On sweltering hot days, it takes a lot to make ponceños leave their homes. Yet they come out in droves to the tree-shaded courtyard of the Cubuqui. When a breeze shakes the flower-covered branches, things cool down considerably. And if nature doesn't cooperate, there are always the three air-conditioned dining rooms. The menu is extremely well traveled, stopping in Argentina (churrasco, or skirt steak, served with homemade chimichurri) and France (veal fillet in a red wine sauce) before heading back to Puerto Rico for such dishes as masitas de cerdo (chunks of perfectly seasoned pork). The wine list, which includes many bottles from Spain and Chile, is quite reasonable. There's always live music, whether it's a small band playing jazz or a single accordionist losing himself in a tango.
32 Calle Isabel, Ponce, 00732, Puerto Rico