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Little Havana Restaurant

The original of this Cuban staple is in Miami, and the Deerfield restaurant features a fountain and an outdoor patio where die-hard cigar smokers can stretch their legs. A bright interior is decorated with wood mementos, gewgaws, and color-saturated murals of Havana street scenes. But even with every word and snort of laughter echoing against the tiles, the place is never less than cozy, maybe because it's so full of happy people. Margaritas are $5.99 each, and "The Taste of Havana" is a platter of meat and starch heaped roughly to eyebrow height: roasted chicken thighs, ham croquettes, salted plantain chips so sheer you can see through them, a cornmeal tamale with a dab of chopped meat in the middle, and crisp yucca wedges to swipe through a cup of cheesy pepper sauce.

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