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Mortadella on a Cuban? What gives!!??

Um, tell me this is/was just a crazy error? I finally stopped in at Montrose Spa the other evening on the way home from the gym, wanting a cuban but knowing that I couldn't possibly deal with the crowd at Chez Henri. Well, $6.50 gets you a giant sandwich, fresh grilled, mustard, pickles, etc. But why the heck was there mortadella on my sandwich?! I'm going for the real deal next time.

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  1. I only went there once, but definitely didn't get mortadella on my sandwich, just the ham and roast pork (for meats).

    2 Replies
    1. re: Dax

      Recently a co worker told me the naked fish makes a cuban sandwich with roast pork (usually dry) ham (domestic?) and swiss, with pickles and a spicy mayo type sauce. she says it is the best and a little greasy like on the streets.

      1. re: joshengel

        I tried it once at the Waltham location. I'd put it about on par with the pressed sandwich "cubano" at The Squealing Pig but it's nothing special. Any of the other, more local, regular cubano-making joints make better ones.

    2. Miami subs 'special' cuban has bologna on it. Mortadella sounds pretty good to me.

      1. What do you mean by the "real deal"? A Cuban family runs Montrose and the same can't be said of Chez Henri, if I recall correctly.... I was talking about Cuban sandwiches with the older woman there the other day (there was mortadella on mine), and she said that while she loves Chez Henri, they put chipotle in theirs, which should also disqualify it as "the real deal"... but then again, from posters on Chowhound and from eating, I've learned that there are usually several versions of "authentic", whatever that means.

        1 Reply
        1. re: newhound

          I'm not looking to get into the authentic debate because there are just too many interpretations, as you alluded to. By the real deal I just meant my original craving - for a Chez Henri cuban. No, it's not the traditional (maybe a better word to use than "authentic", note to self) cuban you'd get in Miami or Tampa, but it is my preferred sandwich when I'm wanting to throw down for the flavor (and the calories!)

          FWIW, the mortadella on this sandwich threw the whole flavor off for me. I was starving after 2+ hours at the gym and I ate the whole darn thing - I ain't frontin' - but I won't get that sandwich again. Otherwise, the experience at Montrose was great.

        2. Never gotten mortadella in my Montrose cuban. Usually black forest ham (with the roast pork, mustard and pickles.) That's just plain wierd.

          1. The origin story of the Cubano is a bit murky -- some Cuban ex-pats claim it was invented in FL, not Cuba (which I personally doubt).

            I just know I never saw Genoa salami (as is added to many Cubanos in the Tampa area) to the ones I had when I lived in Miami. Maybe mortadella is another Tampa-influenced nod to the Italian ex-pats who were often customers of Cuban restaurants in Tampa.

            The local Cubano that most reminds me of Miami is El Oriental's version; I've been meaning to get back since the re-opening.

            The Cuban side of the menu at Chez Henri was originated by Corrina Mozo, its original chef de cuisine; she is half-Cuban, half-French.

            1 Reply
            1. re: MC Slim JB

              No mayo, tomatoes, lettuce, mortadella, Genoa or any other kind of salami, in my Cubano please!!! What you'd have is called a Cuban Mix Sandwich at El Siboney in Key West.

              Here's a great, encyclopedic link to it all:


            2. Just wondering, since we're on the subject: I have tentative plans to go to Chez Henri after work on Friday to finally try one. There will probably be three of us. How early do we need to get there in order to get a seat? Thanks-

              1 Reply
              1. re: AnnieP

                Six sharp. Last time I was at CH, I easily found two spots at 6. By 6:15, the bar was full. Get there at 6 and you'll be fine. That sandwich is the most amazing thing on earth, authentic or not.

              2. We've moved the non-local discussion of mortadella and Cubans to the General Chowhounding Topics board, at http://www.chowhound.com/topics/359388