A top view of the cuisine in the restaurant. A top view of the cuisine in the restaurant.

Celebrating Cuban Cuisine: La Caretta’s Flavorful Delights

In Miami, tired of eating the same old life and want to have fun and experience good food? Worry no more. You just need to go to La Caretta Restaurant.

There are nine chains of La Caretta restaurants in Miami. Why are so many restaurants serving Cuban food in Miami? Due to Miami’s geographic closeness to Cuba, it proved to be an easy location for Cubans to migrate to.

La Carreta is a famous Cuban restaurant serving good Cuban food at great prices. It is a great place for people of various demographics to eat, to come and enjoy, be it a romantic date night of a husband and wife or a family outing with kids.

1. History of the first La Caretta Restaurant

Well, first things first, the word “Carreta” comes from a Spanish background, which stands for Oxcart. Now, Oxcart or La Carreta translates to any open vehicle on two or four wheels, generally used to carry loads.

Coming to history, the first ever La Carreta restaurant was interestingly founded by a Cuban migrant only in 1976. Felipe Vals, the Cuban migrant, founded the restaurant in Calle Ocho in Little Havana.

The idea behind creating La Carreta is quite interesting, too, just like the name. When the political takeover of Cuba happened in 1959, many Cubans moved to Miami, and they were rapidly searching for a community that felt like home. This led to a growing demand for a cultural hub, and that is how the idea of La Carreta came out.

It was only a matter of time before La Carreta became a hub of good Cuban food, attracting thousands of customers daily to discover authentic Cuban food made with love.

Having its origins deep-rooted in Cuban style, this restaurant flourishes in providing “abuela style” dining traditions or, in layman’s terms, grandmother-style food. They also serve authentic Cuban espresso.

With more than nine locations spread across Miami, thousands of Miami locals and tourists are treated to authentic Cuban cuisine and coffee daily. It has now become a chain of restaurants spread throughout Miami. Many come together to celebrate cultural achievements and collective Cuban camaraderie.

2. The Menu

The menu is a complete package in itself. It starts right with the mouth-watering appetizers and then moves to the delicious Cuban samplers. There are special dishes for all days of the week. Then comes the famous Cuban entree, which has dishes of chicken, seafood, pork, and meat as well.

The meat entree, which includes authentic recipes like Ropa Vieja, is quite popular on the menu. Ropa Vieja is a dish containing minced beef, which is cooked in a tomato sauce along with onions and peppers and is usually served with sweet plantains and rice on the side.

The famous grilled Palomilla steak, a classic Cuban dish, is also served here. You will surely find sandwiches of many kinds, including the famous Cuban sandwich, a popular lunch item. There are special dishes designed for kids under 12 years of age.

Then there are soups and salads. There is also a place for a bar where you can get wine, beer, and other drinks along with beverages like the famous Cuban coffee espresso.

To top it all, we end with the delicious desserts, which include rice pudding and a chocolate cake.

Locations

1.     Miami International Airport – Concourse “D-37”

2100 NW 42nd Ave, Miami, FL 33126, USA

2.      Mercy Hospital

3663 S Miami Ave, Miami, FL 33133, USA

3.      Pembroke Pines

301 N University Dr, Pembroke Pines, FL 33024, USA

4.      Miramar

14791 Miramar Pkwy, Miramar, FL 33027, USA

5.      International Mall

10633 NW 12th St, Miami, FL 33172, USA

6.      Kendall

11740 SW 88th St, Miami, FL 33186, USA

7.      Hialeah

5350 W 16th Ave, Hialeah, FL 33012, USA

8.      Bird Road

8650 SW 40th St, Miami, FL 33155, USA

9.      8th Street

3632 SW 8th St, Miami, FL 33135, USA

Little Havana, 4.9 km from Vizcaya Museum and Gardens

Here are some of the good and bad reviews by employees and customers of La Carreta Restaurants from various review sites such as TripAdvisor and Yelp.

1.      Great Cuban food!

If you want a taste of Cuba, La Carreta offers plenty of options. The food is great, from finger food, such as empanadas, to full dishes. Be prepared to eat, as plates are large. The price is quite reasonable.

2. Had a great dinner at La Carreta, tasty Cuban food. The delicious Yuca, Frijoles, Rice, Margaritas, and Cuban sandwiches.

3. La Carreta is an amazing Cuban restaurant. Everything tastes great, and the portions are quite large.

4. A must when in Miami- La Carreta is perhaps my favorite mealtime when in Miami. The city has a megadiverse gastronomy. Yet, the Cuban feel and good servings this place has are unparalleled! I used to be a huge Versailles fan. Yet, after the pandemic hit, its serving sizes were shrunken, and they inflated their prices. So, after 25 years of loyalty to Versailles, I accepted being treated to try La Carreta and just kept going back: great size servings and price combined with a great flavor.

5. Bad service

The waiter that served our table did not care about us. He was more concerned about the next in line. We had to wait for a lot of time.

6. From the moment you walk in, you can feel the warmth of everyone who works there. We quickly sat, and the waitress came in a matter of seconds. She took our drink orders and appetizers. The garlic bread was brought out a few minutes later. The assorted “croquetas” were delicious. Then, it took about 15 minutes for our food to come out.

My kids loved the “Palomilla Steak” with fries from the kid’s menu. It was huge. Great value! My wife had the “Vaca Frita” (Shredded beef grilled with onions and Cuban mojo, served with moros rice and sweet plants). Both she and I thought it was fantastic. I had the “Ropa Vieja” for the first time, and I loved it! My mom loved it, too. They have a great staff. The quality of the food is amazing.

7. The most enjoyable part of the job was working with multicultural people. Getting my job done for more dishes. Great hours & days off. Great people in a clean, friendly restaurant. Very grateful for the job opportunity.

8. I would clock in and greet everyone. I proceeded to wipe the tables and mop the floors. Create a water bucket for my rags. Pour chips into the chip machine. Bring chips and salsa to every customer that walks through the door. Then, when customers arrive, I quickly clean the table for the next customer. Around closing, I make new salsa for the next day and clean the bathrooms. I also cleaned the busboy area and took all the trash out.

9. Very happy with the nice portions and options on the brunch menu. The waitstaff was attentive and willing to help us enjoy our meal. I would come to visit again. It was a good experience.

10. This review is for my experience with picking up food; I have not eaten at this location for many years. I have been to this Carreta several Sundays in a row to pick up food. My experience overall has been very pleasant. The staff had the food packed and ready upon my arrival. Once I got to my father-in-law’s house with the food, it was consistently hot and delicious.

Last Updated on December 23, 2023 by Sathi Chakraborty

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