By Lori Fredrich Senior Food Writer, Dining Editor, Podcast Host Published Oct 09, 2017 at 1:03 PM

The second Cubanitas location opened late last week at Drexel Town Square in Oak Creek. And the restaurant was hopping late Saturday night, casting an orange glow across the square.

Cubanitas Oak Creek, 7973 S. Main St., is the newest addition to a cadre of popular restaurants in the square, including Bel Air Cantina, Pizza Man and Valentine Cafe.

Owned by Chef Marc Bianchini and his wife Marta, a native of Cuba, the Cuban restaurant was established in 2003. The trail-blazing restaurant was the first of its kind in Wisconsin, and thanks to dishes that hearken back to Marta's family recipes, the Downtown location has become a popular hot spot for dishes like empanadas, tostones, ropa vieja, arroz con pollo and more.

The interior of the Oak Creek restaurant mirrors the look and feel of the Downtown location in a variety of ways. Bright red-orange walls, eye-catching art and a lively bar are hallmarks. Meanwhile, the new location sports personal touches, including a collection of female portraits on the dining room wall. Images of Marta's relatives, they back to the name "Cubanitas," which is Spanish for "little Cuban girls." 

The Cubanitas menu offers up inspired Cuban fare including empanadas, sandwiches (including the classic Cubano) and entrees like lechon asado (roasted pork), ropa vieja (flank steak) and a variety of seafood dishes with prices ranging between $8 and $17. Sides include classic options like yucca, plantains and Frijoles Colorados (red beans with potatoes). On the sweet side, there’s flan along with options like coconut and key lime pie.

Hours for the new location are Monday through Friday from 11 a.m. to 11 p.m., Friday and Saturday from 11 a.m. to midnight and Sunday from 10 a.m. to 10 p.m.

Lori Fredrich Senior Food Writer, Dining Editor, Podcast Host

Lori is an avid cook whose accrual of condiments and spices is rivaled only by her cookbook collection. Her passion for the culinary industry was birthed while balancing A&W root beer mugs as a teenage carhop, fed by insatiable curiosity and fueled by the people whose stories entwine with each and every dish. She’s had the privilege of chronicling these tales via numerous media, including OnMilwaukee and in her book “Milwaukee Food.” Her work has garnered journalism awards from entities including the Milwaukee Press Club. 

When she’s not eating, photographing food, writing or recording the FoodCrush podcast, you’ll find Lori seeking out adventures with her husband Paul, traveling, cooking, reading, learning, snuggling with her cats and looking for ways to make a difference.