There is some part of me that for some reason really wants to have a “real” Cuban sandwich. I don’t know why this is.
A couple years ago, I was in Salt Lake City, and the place I ate dinner at had an “authentic Cuban”. It was pretty good, but I wondered if it was authentic. Then about a month ago, I got a Cuban at a place at BWI airport that I didn’t like at all.
So on this trip to Tampa, I asked around among some of the locals, and had no less than three recommendations for The Floridian. Happily enough, it was about eight blocks from my hotel, and had a Verizon store next door where I went and bought a replacement headset after dinner. The Floridian says that it had the very best Cuban on the planet. I don’t have a good basis for comparison, but it was pretty darn good.
My order was a Cuban, fries, and a drink. So the sandwich was very good! It was a 10″ size, was hot off the press, and yet not so hot as to burn the mouth. The press made the bread fairly hard, and it takes a good bite to get through it. I noticed the sandwich had ham, pork, and salami on it, all thin sliced. It had some yellow sauce. It had an interesting flavor, just a hint of spice, and was very good.
The fries were perfect, medium cut and fried just to the point of crisp. The fries were black peppered. The tea was brewed on-site and self serve, and excellent.
So I enjoyed the sandwich. I got there about 1900 and left about 1945. I was the only customer in the place, although a couple to-go folks came in. My check was $8,30.
After this meal, I looked up Cuban sandwiches on Wikipedia, and to my surprise found out that I had *not* had a pure Cuban. The salami was the difference. Well, I guess I will have to have another in pure form! Next trip.