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Cuban Suggestions-Sherman Oaks/Van Nuys?

Hypnotic23 Mar 4, 2009 05:22 PM

Can anybody suggest a good non chain Cuban restaurant in Sherman Oaks or Van Nuys area? I tried Vercailles and was disgusted, even spots in North Hollywood also would be great?



  1. Das Ubergeek Mar 4, 2009 09:20 PM

    Is El Criollo still open on Victory and Fulton?

    1. Kate is always hungry Mar 4, 2009 09:21 PM


      My favorite is El Criollo. I haven't been for a while. Unless they've moved since the last time I was there, the address is 13425 Victory Blvd. Enjoy!


      2 Replies
      1. re: Kate is always hungry
        Hypnotic23 Mar 5, 2009 09:10 AM

        Thank you both, I shall try this over the weekend, I see they have a website too:


        1. re: Hypnotic23
          sbritchky Mar 5, 2009 09:23 AM

          Oh, man, cream cheese with guava and a cup of sweet Cuban coffee for dessert! The only thing missing is a Cuban cigar and some hot politics.

          It's a nice-looking menu that reminds me of my very pleasant years in Miami. Please let us know if El Criollo delivers on its promise, Hypnotic23.

      2. a
        a213b Mar 5, 2009 10:18 AM

        Man, I live not too far from this and was never aware. What do you all recommend there?

        3 Replies
        1. re: a213b
          Das Ubergeek Mar 5, 2009 11:56 AM

          Rrrrrrrrrrrrrrropa vieja!

          1. re: Das Ubergeek
            sbritchky Mar 5, 2009 12:30 PM

            You mean I don't have to dress up to go? ;-)

            1. re: Das Ubergeek
              Kate is always hungry Mar 5, 2009 07:12 PM

              Si como no! I love the ropa vieja. It's the ropa vieja by which I measure all other ropa viejas, and the homemade flan! I took a well-traveled friend there once and she stated, unequivocally, that it was the best flan she had ever had.

          2. f
            fishyak Mar 5, 2009 04:21 PM

            Website shows address as 6622 Van Nuys Blvd, not Victory Blvd. Just called and confirmed. This puts it between Kittridge and Vanowen. If my wife feels like a Media Noche - we're in. And I haven't had guava shells and cream cheese in an age either.

            6 Replies
            1. re: fishyak
              Das Ubergeek Mar 5, 2009 08:21 PM

              That's odd, because I used to live at Vanowen and Fulton and would walk down there. Maybe they moved.

              1. re: Das Ubergeek
                Local Mar 5, 2009 09:10 PM

                they did move ...can't remember where, but I read about it recently...maybe Yelp...I drive by the old location daily, noticed it was closed and was depressed until reading about the move.

                1. re: Local
                  Das Ubergeek Mar 5, 2009 09:19 PM

                  It would be hard for me to go PAST Puro Sabor in order to go to El Criollo... that's just cruel!!

                  1. re: Das Ubergeek
                    Local Mar 5, 2009 09:33 PM

                    oh yes, i know...Puro Sabor is truly the siren's song and especially hard to ignore with my office just a block away. love their ceviche!

                    1. re: Local
                      Das Ubergeek Mar 5, 2009 09:35 PM

                      Try the causa rellena. It will make you cry.

                    2. re: Das Ubergeek
                      streetgourmetla Mar 5, 2009 10:41 PM

                      Pero tambien, vale la pena!The new El Criollo is great, and the food is as good as ever.

              2. toomanypots Mar 5, 2009 09:20 PM

                So, ... is everybody going there this Friday night? :-)

                2 Replies
                1. re: toomanypots
                  a213b Mar 6, 2009 11:40 AM

                  I'll be there tonight; may just be my wife and I, or we may be as large as a party of 7 or 8.

                  I am REALLY looking forward to this! For anyone else who's there, you'll be able to recognize me by my hair ... it's, um, rather distinctive.

                  1. re: a213b
                    sbritchky Mar 6, 2009 11:53 AM

                    I'll be in ropa vieja (old clothes).

                2. f
                  fishyak Mar 6, 2009 07:57 AM

                  Tried El Criollo last night. We'll be back.

                  Sangria - good - a little sweet from simple syrup.
                  My wife and I both went "simple" media noche sandwiches with ff's. The sandwiches had been pressed long enough to crisp and get the cheese melted. Personally, I would have liked one slice more pork roast and less ham, but that's taste; the sandwich was still really good. The ff's were almost perfectly crisp. The service was a little slow. The Cuban coffee was spot on. The bigger dinners looked and smelled really good.

                  Neighborhood = dicey at night. After dark the grocery cart crowd was wandering around out front and the razor wire everywhere out back (where the parking is) says "Pay attention."

                  And I think a lot of this menu would transport well so placing to go orders for pick up makes sense, too.

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