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Thursday, 08 April 2010Informations

Coffee

Cuban coffee is delicious - rich, nutty, full-bodied and slightly sweet. You can make it Cuban style like espresso, with milk like a cappuccino or café latte or like regular coffee. Cuban coffee is available in vacuum-packed cellophane bags. You can buy whole beans or pre-ground.

Cigars

The quality and reputation of Cuban cigars is unsurpassed. There are currently about 35 brands available that produce several hundred varieties. Some of the most popular brands include Cohiba, Montecristo, Romeo y Julieta, Partagas, H. Upmann and Bolivar.

Each brand is available in 6 to 8 varieties or sizes. Prices vary according to brand and variety. If you have the time, read a few books on the subject. Or ask for advice both before you leave on your trip and once you've arrived. Be sure to try a few different brands and varieties. Then buy the one you like best in the price range you can afford.

Warning: Be wary of the person on the street or beach who offers to sell you cigars. These cigars could be inferior in quality.

Only official outlets and government stores can guarantee authenticity. Even then check for freshness - both smell and touch - uniformity of size and colour. Remember only these stores can issue receipts for your cigar purchases. You may need to produce these receipts at customs, either in Cuba or at home.

Alcoholic Beverages

Rum in Cuba is excellent, plentiful and inexpensive. Cuban white rum is ideal for cocktails. Three of the best - all created in Cuba - are the Cuba Libre, the Daiquiri, and the Mojito.

Brands include Havana Club, Varadero and Caribbean Club. Varieties are white, 3, 5 and 7 year old. For the connoisseur you can purchase 15-year-old rum, for a hefty price. The older the rum, the darker it is. Aged rum should be sipped slowly with ice or straight up.

If you are going to buy rum, buy it in a store or at the duty-free shop at the airport. Don't buy it from a stranger... the product is usually an inferior brand with a little aged rum for colour. There is no limit on the amount of rum you can take with you when you leave Cuba. However, be aware of your country's regulations on the amount of alcohol that you can import.

Cuba also produces several brands of beer of varying type and quality including Hatuey, Mayabe, Bucanero and its best-known brand, Cristal. Cuba has begun to produce its own wine. Although still experimental, the result is already quite tasty.

Cuisine

Unlike many other Caribbean islands, Cuban cooking is not hot in terms of spicing. The influences are Spanish and African.Traditional cooking is built around the staples of rice and beans, pork, chicken and fried or boiled root vegetables all flavoured with onions, garlic and mild spices. The other staple is seafood. Traditional cooking Seafood.

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