The old Harlem Bar embraces its Latin American side

Every great city has funky lil' sub-'hoods that for whatever reason are famous in their own right, whether it's the historic cultural value of Old 4th Ward, or the amazing acting skills and insatiable steak lust of all 3,000 people in Bonanza. Giving you a new reason to revere a famous section of NYC, Spanish Harlem

Former soul food lounge Harlem Bar has been reincarnated as a Latin American resto-tavern with a rustic map-like mural of Cuba and the Caribbean, a wall featuring a plexiglass board of hanging gold-glittered circles, and a new stone/glass tiled bar sitting below a large, flashing, color-changing cross, which hopefully helps keep all their spirits pure. First choices include panko-crusted Papa Rellena (ground beef-stuffed potatoes), then move on to slow-cooked beef or chicken stew, pan-seared/ caramelized onion-topped pork chops, and a plate of ground beef & tropical cheese-layered sweet plantain lasagna, on which you don't have to be Garfield to potentially Odie. Booze's handled by bottled brews (Sol, Carta Blanca...), Latin American wines (Argentina's Punta Final Malbec, Chile's Morande Pionero Pinot Noir), plus house cocktails like the half-SoCo/half-sweet tea vodka Menta Julep, or the bourbon & muddled ginger syrup/ lemon/ blueberry Azucar Morena -- Spanish for "Brown Sugar", it comes in handy when chatting up ladies if you lack the Stones

For dessert try the deep-fried chocolate fudge dots, vanilla ice cream/ caramel sauce-topped raisin bread pudding, or a cinnamon whipped cream-crowned, 151-drenched piece of homemade yellow cake, which you don't have to be from Bonanza to consider down-home Hoss-spitality.

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