Monday, May 7, 2012

The Pato Cubano

The 320 Main Pato Cubano

The Cuban Sandwich is both well-known, and yet, still rather mysterious. These sandwiches, originally called mixtos in Cuba, made their way to Florida when travel between the US and Cuba was frequent and easy. It is believed that it was in Florida that the Cuban Mixtos made their transition to the standard Cuban Sandwich of today: pressed Cuban-style bread, ham, shredded pork, swiss cheese, mustard, and dill pickles.

Of course, this is a sandwich we’re talking about, so rules tend to be more like guidelines. According to the city of Tampa, FL, the Tampa Historical Cuban Sandwich is the original and official Cuban Sandwich (their City Council said so). It’s very close to the formula above with salami added for good measure. Ask anyone in the Cuban community in Miami if that’s a Cuban Sandwich and you might get a knuckle sandwich instead, followed by an explanation of the fact that salami has no place in the sandwich, and that the heathens in Tampa probably don’t even make their bread properly.

Seal Beach is a long way from Florida - and even farther from Cuba - but that doesn’t mean that we at 320 Main can’t steal a little inspiration from a sandwich that is so beloved to try to make it our own.

320 Main’s Pato Cubano (Cuban Duck) replaces the ham of the traditional Cuban Sandwich with smoked duck, matches that with braised pork, tangy dijon mustard, swiss cheese, dill pickles, and fresh tomatoes - all on a pressed Cuban roll. Have one with our house fries or Sriracha coleslaw and - to stay with the Cuban theme - wash the entire delectable affair down with a hand-shaken Daiquri #3.

Pairs well with: Daiquri #3

Matt “RumDood” Robold is a bartender at 320 Main and, in his spare time, runs, where he writes about rum, rum cocktails, and rum history.

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