CúbaroEach month Yucatan Today visits a restaurant in order to describe what it has to offer. This is not a review; it is a summary of the menu, service, ambience, prices, and opening hours.

February, 2011

Have you noticed the exotic-looking restaurant on the southwest corner of the glorieta at the Monumento a la Patria? In fact it is not just one restaurant. Cubaro, Slavia, and Tobago are a trio of places to indulge yourself in some of the best food, wine, and coffee that Mérida has to offer.

Owner Jonathan opened Slavia about ten years ago with just a few tables, no sign, and a couple of torches outside the door. He wanted to create a unique restaurant which caters to “the exotic side of the good life”…and so he has! Slavia’s eclectic clash of Indian-European-Mexican-Bohemian decor is a visual treat; he has collected furniture, art, table settings, and lamps from all over the world, and the restaurant-bar has expanded; but there is no area which seats more than 20 people, so every space is cozy. The bartender is a pro and specializes in mojitos and martinis; and there is a delicious array of imported wines available by the glass, a rarity in Mérida. The sommelier knows his wines and makes suggestions without being condescending. The menu is as eclectic as the decor, including such fusion recipes as Vietnamese curry shrimp rolls with mango chutney, crispy and served piping hot; and grilled prawns with lemon spinach. There are carpaccios, fondues, chapatas, salads, pastas, seafood, duck, beef, and venison. The menu has to be seen to be believed.

Cubaro is an outdoor space overlooking the monument, with a more modern feel but an equally eclectic menu. An example of the ultimate concept in fusion is the cochinita spring roll, crispy, served hot, and accompanied by a delicious homemade habanero sauce. The sour orange duck magret, flamed with Grand Marnier, is served on a bed of caramelized onion and comes with rosemary Cambray potatoes. There are also pastas, seafood, soups, salads, steaks and more. The house specialty is the venison toasts with chile de árbol. It’s a great spot to watch the people go by and the service is impeccable; no detail is overlooked.

Tobago is a café but so much more! They have delicious Italian roast coffee and their baristas know how to make a proper espresso and cappuccino, and the desserts are amazing, including flaming strawberries and apple tart. The space is small, with only a few tables, and offers an eclectic decor with an intimate feel. If you like the cozy, private feel of the café, you can order dinner here from either of the other two menus.

Cubaro, Slavia, & Tobago are wonderful worlds of indulgence, delicious and unique food, flawless service, and hundreds of tiny details which make them irresistable. If you can’t decide which one to go to, have an appetizer and drink at Slavia, dinner at Cubaro, and coffee and dessert at Tobago! Unforgettable.


Paseo de Montejo at the Monumento a la Patria. Tel. 926 6587. Open from 5.30 pm every day.


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