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Porto's must try's

I will be trying Portos for the first time (yes how can I call myself a CH?) next week and wish to know the items I must try as I am breaking my diet. I know about the potato balls but what else do I have to sample? I was thinking more about the baked goods but as long as I am there I would not pass up the sandwiches or anything else.

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  1. I adore their pastries with cream cheese and guava. The sweetness of the guava is tempered by the slight tang of the cream cheese--so delicious!

    Congratulations on breaking your diet :)

    1 Reply
    1. re: riceflour

      I second riceflour's mention... those guava pastries... yum, yum.

      1. Also, their regular cheese roll (pastry with cream cheese).
        And personally I really like their meat pies too!


        2 Replies
          1. re: burumun

            I second the recommendation for the cheese rolls! The potato balls are definately a must. I also like their plaintain chips. I remember being overwhelmed ther first time I went to Porto's because there were so many people and good things to try!

          2. Ask them if they have any still-warm chocolate croissants. OMG so sinful, so good.

            Also, their coffee is revelatory. I once put a cafe con leche next to a latte from Fourbucks and had someone try both (blind) and the results were comical -- I'd never actually seen anyone do a spit-take in real life before.

            1. Porto's makes a mean Cuban sandwich. If your going off a diet that's the way to go Ditto on the guava & cream cheese pastries. I just had them last Tuesday.

              1. The cheese rolls are really good, its a flaky crust with a sweet cheese baked in. The potatoe balls are delish. I love their media noche sandwich, the cubano sandwich and the lechon sandwich. Desserts are a must try, I suggest the mango cheesecake, the pinapple bomb and the tres leches. I also like their meat pie and chicken empanada.

                1. Any of the mini cakes are really good, so pick one (or 2 or 30) in your favorite flavor. I like anything chocolate there. Mango cake is good too.
                  Guava pastries must be tried.

                  2 Replies
                    1. re: CookieEater

                      yeah the mini cakes are good if you want to sample a variety. I love the mini tres leches cake. I like the guava and pineapple turnover. I don't like the brownie. I like their whole wheat breads too which come in a bun size. Basically try one of everything and you can't really go wrong. I can't say that about most other bakeries.

                    2. CHEESE ROLLS!!!

                      They're often likened to crack... lol
                      No not really.
                      They're quite addictive...

                      1. Media noche preparada - the midnight sandwich (Cuban on sweet bread) with croquette on it. The pastrami sandwich is also pretty great, especially to take to the Dodger game.

                        1. meat pies. dear god so good.

                          1. all of their pastries are excellent! the meat pies are also excellent. my favorite sandwich there is the pulled pork sandwich.

                            1. The potato balls are great as are the to-die-for cheese rolls. Skip the croquetas.

                              You should take loaf of Cuban bread home. They make the best in L.A.

                              Rumbabas are my faves. Also love the Elephant Ears. So good with Porto's 5-star coffee.

                              4 Replies
                              1. re: sindy500

                                I just love their macaroons. Perfect balance of sweetness, texture and moisture.
                                I just love them.

                                1. re: gado_gado

                                  I got my answers guys and gals..Thanks

                                  1. re: SIMIHOUND

                                    I'm going to be the dissenter here. I do not get the love for the potato balls. I've had them many, many times. To me, they are just dense and starchy. I am going to have to try those pastries with the cream cheese and guava. They sound awesome.

                                    1. re: Fru

                                      Agree agree AGREE! Those potato balls are overrated!

                              2. love the empanada w/chorizo and those potato balls!

                                1 Reply
                                1. re: foufou

                                  I just got back.....First of all I did not expect it to be such a large place with such a large parking lot. In any case...I tried and also brought home potato balls-I dont see what the hype is about those, chocolate croissants-(yes Das Ubergeek you were right as usual,) black bean and bananna dessert-oh yes! cheese rolls (truly sinfully painfully unreal) pork tamale, cubano sandwich (wow that was special) , meat pies, apple empanada, olive bread and ciabata bread and yes the guava cheese pastry. All in all very worth the trip and a great experience for the day. Now where do I hide all this from the wife?

                                2. Where is porto's located, I am in need NOW!!!

                                  12 Replies
                                  1. re: JEN10

                                    There are two locations. One is in Burbank and one is in Glendale.

                                    Glendale Location
                                    315 North Brand Blvd.
                                    Glendale, CA 91203
                                    tel. (818) 956-5996
                                    fax (818) 956-0696

                                    Burbank Location
                                    3614 W Magnolia Blvd.
                                    Burbank, CA 91505
                                    (818) 846-9100

                                    1. re: alliebear

                                      Dang it, I live in Palos Verdes that would be a trek. I love living here but the food selection is limited. Good thing I like to cook.

                                      1. re: JEN10

                                        Porto's is to baking as Brent's is to deli. I think an occasional trek in is well worth it but I would make the trek in the morning when you know they have everything your coming for. Porto's is about golden brown flakey tidbitds on your shirt your plate and around the corners of your mouth that you know mean something was baked well, baked correctly. I am so amazed how one place can be so wonderful and also well managed. BTW those cheese rolls are "food crack."

                                          1. re: choctastic

                                            That's the thing... you go to a normal bakery and a danish is $2 (or more if it's one of those fancy bakeshops) -- at Porto's it's 90 cents. It's cheap as dirt and they make it up on volume.

                                            1. re: Das Ubergeek

                                              Funny thing, I never looked at prices while I was there. I bought a boat load of stuff including a sandwich, drink and at least a dozen rolls of sorts and spent less than $40.00. I can't get the place out of my mind today.

                                              1. re: SIMIHOUND

                                                I think of the prices at Porto's mostly because my favourite coffeeshop in OC (Cafe Contigo) sells Porto's pastries that they buy frozen from the main factory in Irwindale. They're much more expensive and so I notice -- but still cheaper than the gas to get to the 818 and back (even in my little tiny hybrid).

                                          2. re: SIMIHOUND

                                            I don't know how often I would make that kind of drive for Porto's, but I do know they replenish items throughout the day--I've never seen them without cheese rolls, guava with cheese rolls, potato balls, etc.

                                            If you want to purchase the love and respect of your peers, order a deli tray of potato balls, and a deli tray of cheese rolls and take that to the office for breakfast. Soooo good!

                                          3. re: JEN10

                                            JEN10, good news. Tropi Cuba Cafe in Torrance buys many of their frozen parbaked pastries from Porto's. While you won't get the whole range of Porto's offerings, many of the tarts (especially the guava y queso) are there.

                                            That said, the last time I bought the Tropi Cuba version, they weren't baked correctly. The puff pastry was pale and dense instead of puffy and crisp, which means the oven wasn't hot enough. Working w/ parbaked product still requires some technical skill in the kitchen.

                                            Provided the kitchen staff are on their A game, the Tropi Cuba will save you a trip to Glendale.

                                            Tropi Cuba Cafe
                                            21730 S Vermont Ave, Torrance, CA 90502

                                            1. re: Professor Salt

                                              It is on my hit list, thank you Professor!

                                              1. re: Professor Salt

                                                At least soon it'll just be a drive to Downey, which is more palatable than Glendale...

                                                1. re: Professor Salt

                                                  Thanks for posting this tip again. Missed it the first time. Can't wait to go tomorrow.

                                          4. Has anyone tried their Meringue fruit torte? Just wondering if it's overly sweet?

                                            2 Replies
                                            1. re: chowchow12345678

                                              PS My wife just found the cheese rolls and went nuts! She told me keep everything else I brought home and just leave those rolls for her. BTW The next time I fly out of Burbank airport I know where I am getting my sandwich for the plane.

                                              1. re: chowchow12345678

                                                My mom and I order the cake every year for our birthdays! It is delicious with CUSTARD in the middle!! We enjoy the meringue because it's low fat :)

                                              2. Yes, it's all amazing and so inexpensive! Let me just add my love for the chorizo empanadas, the creme brulee, mango balls (not sure of the name--organge, perfect little spheres), pineapple bomb, and let us not forget the humble apple danish! Amen! Love the place, and even with a huge line, they have enough staff to whip you right through,