There is a new fast-casual restaurant on Franklin Street creating some authentic and super fresh Cuban food!  “We are bringing Cuban food happiness to Chapel Hill,” said owner Mary Morabito.  Cuban Revolution Express opened their doors on December 1st on the corner of Franklin and Kenan streets.

Photo by Lane Deacon

Mary and her husband Ed opened Cuban Revolution Restaurant and Bar in Durham at the American Tobacco Campus in 2009. As they were looking to expand, Chapel Hill seemed like the perfect place given the location to the University.  “Same name, same artwork,” said Mary. Unlike the full-service CR in Durham CUBE is a counter service operation with a limited menu.  They serve the late night crowd on Franklin St. – staying open till 2 am on Friday’s and Saturday’s!

Photo by Lane Deacon


As fast-casual patrons look for healthier menu options, Cuban Revolution Express delivers. CUBE is “committed to baking and not frying,” said Mary. Sourcing their food primarily from local producers all their dishes are made to order. You may even see Mary and Ed at one of the local farmers’ markets around town picking up the freshest ingredients.

What’s the most popular menu item?  The Cuban Sandwich of course. The Cuban is filled with their slow-cooked pork, genoa salami, ham, swiss cheese, mayo, mustard, and pickles.  All their sandwiches are hot and pressed Cuban-style.

The menu is creative and unique offering more than just authentic Cuban dishes. “We enjoy traveling especially out west and discovering new dishes, that’s how we came up with the kale and quinoa combination,” said Mary.

There are plenty of options for those with dietary restrictions including vegetarian and gluten-free. If you have any questions about what to order just ask Mary, she will be able to accommodate most special dietary needs and can recommend something for you. On my visit,  I tried the La Fuerza (power salad) a mix of romaine and spinach topped with carrots, radishes, tomatoes, sunflower seeds, chickpeas, red quinoa, corn, pepper jack cheese, and avocado hummus. It’s not only beautiful it also tastes really good, the avocado hummus alone will make me keep coming back for more.

La Fuerza Salad – Photo by Lane Deacon

To finish your meal try the tres leches cake or flan, both made in house.

After the OWASA water issue last week forced CUBE to close along with many other local restaurants, bars, and businesses. They decided to launch the express menu at the full- service Durham location. Now you can get all your favorites from Chapel Hill in Durham as well!

What’s next? They are currently experimenting with gluten free wraps to add to the menu and getting their alcohol license to serve local beers and sangria. They currently carry some authentic Cuban sodas.

Run don’t walk to the CUBE!