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Three Days In Tampa!! Help?!?

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I KNOW I want to enjoy authentic Cuban at LEAST once - Last trip I was at that Columbia place in Ybor, lots of 'show' and not much great food. I want an outstanding Vaca Frita! Suggestions please for some delicious Cuban and generally anything amazing (breakfast, lunch, or dinner) in the area.

Thanks!

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  1. So you're here now?
    I too, love Vaca Frita ---- but when I want that I go to Las Margaritas on Hillsborough Ave. near Dale Mabry Highway...
    All these years I really should have been trying to find other places that have it on the menu...
    Las Margaritas is a small family owned Cuban Restaurant that's been there forever...

    Arco Iris on Columbus is my favorite go-to Cuban... Great stuff...

    4 Replies
    1. re: Mild Bill

      Thanks, Bill! I'll be there at the end of the month. I have Las Margaritas on the agenda. What's the best stuff at Arco Iris?

      1. re: bivouac

        If you want to taste how good 'Caldo Gallego' soup can be, make sure you order that...
        If you're not familiar, it's a creamy, beany, garlicky soup with some chopped collard greens, cooked with pork shank or feets, which puts the silky texture over the edge...
        I love their roast pork... The only thing I've ever ordered that I didn't care for was the fried King Mackerel chunks... I thought they were WAY dry... But otherwise most everything has been exceptional...

        Right around the corner from Arco Iris is Mi Pueblo--- a friendly, non-judgmental, 'neighborhood' cafeteria style restaurant that serves Latin food, but more towards Puerto Rican... Awesome!
        It's all out in front of you---- like a candy store...

      2. re: Mild Bill

        three adults with 2 small children.
        we ate bean soup with greens , black beans and rice , pork sandwich and cuban sandwich, plantains. everyone of those items was delicious!!!

        reasonable prices and tasty... would suggest this place to everyone.

        1. re: virginiagal

          Awesome!

      3. Once you get your cuban fix, I recommend bin 27 bistro in south tampa for their lamb porterhouse, butternut squash soup and the ropa vieja...kind of a fusion latin place. I think they have tasting menus paired with wine on Tuesdays for a pretty reasonable price. I also like mise en place, also in south tampa but it's a little more pricier. Great food at both places!