The first thing most people want when they get to Miami (after hitting the beach) is try authentic Cuban food. If you know something about Cuban food in the Magic City, you’ll know some of the best might come from (gasp!) a window! These hotspots aren’t the fanciest, but even Kim has to wear flip flops sometimes. Here are the best spots to get that strictly SoFlo-Cuban experience:
1 Las Olas Café
This humble beach spot attracts locals en masse looking to grab a quick empanada or full meal of chicharrones de pollo and rice. Wash down your meal with their delicious jugo de cana as you pay for your meal in cash only. This literal hole in the wall is so authentic that it doesn’t even have a menu. Warning: it’s constantly packed so proceed with caution.
644 6th St. Miami Beach, FL 33139
Despite its French name (pronounced in Spanish), Versailles, is unquestionably Cuban and has been for 40 years. A wandering vacationer will always be directed here for an authentic Miami/Cuban experience and pastelitos. Its dishes have attracted exiles, tourists, and politicians alike to sit at its tables or pull up to La Ventanita. This has established the restaurant as a sort of political base for THE Cuban opinion and campaign optics. It always helps to see a future leader taking a bite of “world famous” vaca frita served with mojo as she makes promises to the community.
3555 SW 8th St. Miami, FL 33135
3 Larios on the Beach
Wouldn't you know the fanciest on the list comes from Gloria and Emilio Estefan. Larios serves the comfort food you love with glam presentation, haute interiors, and live entertainment. This chic establishment has maintained the color and flavor that is crucial to signature Cuban dishes. We recommend the award-winning lechón and the popular paella valenciana.
820 Ocean Dr Miami Beach, FL 33139
4 Havana 1957
Allow yourself to be taken to 1950s Cuba at this haute beach restaurant. Havana 1957 prides itself on allowing diners to spend a day in Havana. Get a taste of your Cuban favorites and sip on mojitos while surrounded by prints of Cuban legends. This spot offers an authentic atmosphere and authentic dishes, just ask Rob and Blac Chyna.
819 Lincoln Road Miami Beach, Fl
5 Enriqueta’s Sandwich Shop
Because of the heat, foreigners would peg us for iced coffee connoisseurs, but only true natives of the Magic City know the tiniest brew is the hottest brew. We're so serious about the cafecito that 3:05 pm was declared the designated time for cafecitos in 2013. Who needs siesta when, in Miami, you can officially break for a fix at Enriqueta’s? Oh, and you can come here for the sandwiches too…
186 NE 29th St Miami, FL 33137