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Sep 28, 2009 08:22 AM

Need Cheap Authentic Cuban Food in Miami

I'll be passing through Miami (one day only), so I'm looking for recommendations for quick authentic Cuban food (lunch or dinner) for my family. And if the place is near the beach where we can walk to, that'd be a bonus. We also like BBQ, so any suggestions for that would be great too. Thanks.

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  1. Puerto Sagua - Cuban at 700 Collins

    1. The great thing about Cuban food is that if it is NOT cheap then it's not authentic. The places that try to take it up a notch -- like Lincoln Road's Yuca -- lose the authenticity along the way.

      If you're staying in South Beach, scscr's suggestion is solid. You also have a pair of David's Cafe (on 10th & Collins & on 16th & Meridian) eateries that will fit the bill. Though, to be fair, the iconic Cuban eateries -- Versailles, La Carreta, Casa Lario, Havana Harry, Las Vegas, Palacio de los Jugos (for an open market feel) -- are in Miami and not South Beach.

      1. I hate to get this cliched, but - "toss a cat." Just go to the first place with a spanish name and a non-pretentious exterior and you have a 72% chance of getting something authentic and cheap in Miami.

        1. Go to El Palacio de los Jugos. It is on 57th and Flagler just south of the 836 highway, near the airport. It is an open market, akin to what you would find in central/latin America. There are essentially 5 stands, plus the fruit vendor. One is totally pork, one is for seafood, one for sandwiches, one for meat and one for fresh juices (try the guanabana, unreal). Get a couple of croquetas while walking around and deciding what to buy. There is no wait service, but just get whatever looks good and sit at one of the tables and enjoy. Infinitely better than Versailles, La Carretta, etc.

          3 Replies
          1. re: mikek

            Second this suggestion. It's kind of like a market, and the experience is more than just a restaurant meal. And not that far of a drive from Miami Beach.

            1. re: tarepanda

              A huge 'THIRD' on the recommendation of El Palacio de los Jugos...

              I fell in freakin' love with the place on my last trip to Miami...
              I'm in Tampa, and a Cuban friend of recommended I go there--- and now I can't wait to go back!

              It's a scene man!

            2. re: mikek

              I saw the article in the Herald a few weeks ago, and I have driven by the place for years, here is my question (and pardon me for my ignorance as I am a gringa) is it easy to figure out what to order or buy if you dont speak spanish?

            3. If you want authentic Cuban food in Miami Beach, then I concur with the recommendations of Puerto Sagua.