I'm looking for good Puerto Rican or Dominican restaurants, preferably in lower Manhattan, but I'll go uptown and to nearby Brooklyn, if necessary.
I'm especially looking for places that have the good, savory hot dishes that have to cook for hours--carne guisado, ropa vieja, and the chicken (made with chicken leg quarters, not breasts) equivalents, and the soups that are meals in themselves. Also, I'm looking for excellent "maduros," truly ripe plantains that are cooked slowly, so that they caramelize around the edges: the ones I've had recently have been disappointing--either almost "tostones" or reheated or refried so that they are tough, bitter,and dry.
These restaurants can be little greasy spoons like Havana Chelsea--yes, I know, this is Cuban, but the food is similar; or places that are a bit quieter and more "gracious," but they should be primarily places for eating in, not take-out, although they may offer take-out, too.
I already know about El Castillo de Jagua (on Rivington Street) and its clone (on Grand Street), so I need more suggestions than these.
And I'll take suggestions for good Cuban food, too.