Miami's Cuban Ventanita Guide

Where to get pastelitos, croqueticas and cafecito

Sep
29
2021

In light of Latinx Heritage Month, we thought we’d continue the celebration of our roots with the ventanita. Born in Miami, these ventanitas or small counter-service windows, located in Miami bakeries, restaurants, and coffee establishments, give us the daily fuel we need to remain our true Latin selves.

It’s not only where we pull up for our Cuban cafecitocortadito, and anything else ending in “ito” but the neighborhood spots that represent Miami.

We all have one (if you’re a local). They know our exact order and that we take our cafecito with extra espumita. It’s a whole experience, where there’s no real rush, organized chaos that we could watch for hours.

Thank you, Miami for giving us the gift of ventanitas. A place to connect, contar cuentos, and to be our unapologetic selves. Here’s a guide to our favorites in Miami.

ENRIQUETA’S SANDWICH SHOP


Neighborhood: Wynwood
Address: 186 NE 29th St

Enriqueta’s Sandwich Shop located in the not-so-crowded area of Wynwood is a full-fledged restaurant serving breakfast, Cuban sandwiches, and daily specials. You can take a seat inside or order at the ventanita. It usually has a small, manageable line and your wait time will be dependent on your order. For $6.50 we’re getting a cafe con lechetostada, and a freshly squeezed orange juice. If it’s closer to lunch or your need something to cure your hangover, we’d opt for a sandwich. Choices include pan con bistecmedia nochepan con lechon, and many more.

 

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LOS PINARENOS, FRUTERÍA


Neighborhood: Calle Ocho
Address: 1334 SW 8th St

Los Pinarenos Fruteria is a quirky open-air fruit market and ventanita that has been around for 57 years. It’s family-owned and the spot we’d bring our out-of-town friends that are looking to take a walk down Calle Ocho with a fresh fruit juice or cafecito in hand. If you love guava, ginger and pineapple get the Miami sunrise.

 

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SANGUICH DE MIAMI


Neighborhood: Calle Ocho
Address: 2057 SW 8th St

Sanguich de Miami is a restaurant and ventanita featuring Cuban sandwiches like the croqueta preparada and the Cubano. They also add a playful take to the menu with dishes like Cuban nachos made with plantains, pickled onions, shredded lechon, and house-made garlic cilantro aioli. If you are craving something iced, try their colada batido with a strong hit of Cuban coffee.

VERSAILLES


Neighborhood: Calle Ocho
Address: 3555 SW 8th St

Versailles. We couldn’t do a Cuban ventanita guide without including Versailles on Calle Ocho. This iconic Miami staple is for locals as much as it is for tourists. Stop by Versailles when you’re feeling chatty and want to strike up a conversation (that might turn into a debate) with a stranger. It might get political with all the personalities that frequent this ventanita and you should be okay with that.

TINTA Y CAFE


Neighborhood: Coral Gables
Address: 1315 Ponce de Leon

Tinta y Cafe is a modern coffee house with a less hectic ventanita we’d hit up if we are looking to catch up with a friend. Deep conversations can be had at the patio after you place your order at the ventanita counter. You can also sit inside if the heat is unbearable. We love their sandwich selection, our favorite being the guajiro. You can have it with pork or chicken and it comes with Swiss cheese, sauteed onions, drenched in a delicious mojo de la casa. The iced coffee also pairs well with their round-shaped croquetas that melt in your mouth.

 

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MARY’S CAFE


Neighborhood: Coral Gables
Address: 2542 SW 27th Ave

Mary’s Cafe located next to Mary’s Coin Laundry is one of those rare ventanita finds where parking is easy and free. And yes, you can do laundry next door as you wait for your pan con bistec. It’s also open 24 hours a day making it your spot for late-night croqueticas and more. Mary’s Cafe also doubles a convenient store where you can purchase masks, Duracell batteries, Alka-Seltzer, cigarettes, and even some halls for your throat.

ISLAS CANARIAS


Neighborhood: West Kendall
Address: 3804 SW 137th

Islas Canarias is another favorite family-owned Miami institution located in West Kendall. A line forms at this ventanita but they are pretty quick. We love the croquetas and so does everyone else in Miami. El cafe esta fuerta, in the best way possible.

PHOTO CREDIT SCOTT MCINTYRE
THE HUNGRY POST