Saturday, November 26, 2016

Food: Cubans on the Run

Fidel Castro leaves behind a decidedly mixed legacy, but one happy accident of his dictatorship was the spread of the Cuban sandwich: ham, roast pork, Swiss cheese, pickles, and mustard between two toasted loaves of Cuban bread. You see, Castro's repressive regime prompted thousands of exiles to flee to Florida, making this wonderful concoction the semi-official sandwich of Miami.

What non-Floridians might not know, though, is that the Cuban sandwich is everywhere in this state. You can actually find some of the best sandwich shops in places like Tampa and Orlando - shops like Cubans on the Run, an unassuming diner off a highway in Casselberry.

The place is open breakfast, lunch, and dinner, and serves up mostly-authentic Cuban-American food at rock-bottom prices. You can get a standard Cuban, hot off the press, for five dollars, with fancier steak and chicken options available for a couple bucks extra. There are also other standard Cuban entrées available, including picadillo, palomilla steak, and ropa vieja.

Don't expect much in the way of ambiance - food is served in plastic baskets or takeout containers, and the inside is bereft of the faux-Havana accoutrements that you might find in a fancier Cuban restaurant further south. Still, I mostly grade restaurants on the food they serve, and Cubans on the Run gets a hearty...

3/4 stars

Viva Cuba Libre!


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