Living on the east side really has its perks. The rent is cheap, downtown Austin is 5 minutes away, and, most importantly, there is an incredibly diverse selection of places to eat. East Austin is basically a melting pot. Are you looking for American food made with locally grown ingredients? Try East Side Cafe. Love breakfast tacos the size of a newborn child? Head on over Juan in a Million. Craving soul food? It doesn’t get any better than Hoover’s.
Over in my neck of the woods is the Cuban Sandwich Cafe. Tucked back behind an elementary school, this inconspicuous little food stop has an attractive display of Cuban pastries up front and their menu has enticing selections to appease both meat eaters and herbivores alike.
On this particular trip I ordered the Cuban sandwich (its in the name so it has to be good!). I gave my food order to the incredibly helpful and affable gentleman behind the counter and then sat at one of the mismatched tables in the dining area to wait. Everything about this place seems friendly and cozy. Almost like its been here for 50 years.
After I received my sandwich I had to resist the urge to devour it right there, instead heading back to the house where I’d left my camera. This was hard to do. It smelled so good and it was so warm in the to-go bag.
As I unwrapped the sandwich, as if unwrapping a gift, I was hit with aromas of pork, roast beef, bacon, and delicious cheesy, mustardy goodness.
The sandwiches are almost flattened in a hot press which allows the outer crust of the bread to become extra crispy while simultaneously heating up the inside. The result is a harmonious gathering of crispy and soft textures, savory pork and sweet bread.
If you ever find yourself on the east side of Austin please don’t hesitate to try something new. You may surprise yourself. And if you’re ever heading over to the Cuban Sandwich Cafe give me a call! We’ll split an eclair… or five.