With its ever-changing coordinates and conspicuous absence from the Beach Boys' "Kokomo," Cuba is one of the more difficult to locate Caribbean nations. Dig into this enigma with a fork, knife, and today's Groupon: for $15, you get a $30 reusable gift card for Cuban sandwiches and bowls at Cuba Cuba Sandwicheria in Boulder.
Amid lime green walls and countertop seating, Cuba Cuba Sandwicheria’s chefs carefully stack slow-roasted meats and gobs of greens between toasted, locally baked Cuban breads to create six hunger-sating sandwiches. Smoldering shreds of pork tango with citrus and garlic in the pan con lechon ($7), which encourages the mingling of disparate elements, much like a UN ice-cream social. The Elenita ($7) combines layers of roasted turkey with organic watercress and strawberry-balsamic vinaigrette. The shop’s blackboard menu also lists a selection of Cuban bowls, which blend proteins such as ground beef ($6.50) and mahi ($8) with white rice and aiolis. A tres leches cake ($3) and a trio of Cuban sodas ($1.75) provide flavorful ends to epic epicurean eats, and the shop’s quick and efficient service ensures meals appease customers’ appetites speedily. Gift cards obtained through today’s Groupon act like debit cards, usable until drained of funds and then best repurposed as surrealistic playing cards.
Cuba Cuba Sandwicheria
Because her family fled Cuba long before she was born, the closest Kristy Socarras Bigelow has ever gotten to her home country is eating meals prepared by her Cuban relatives. Still, growing up in Miami among a strong Cuban community, it was easy for her to feel close to her heritage—she lived in a bilingual household where they often threw parties with Latin music and dancing.
So when Kristy moved to Denver, she felt a little lost. That lively Cuban community was gone, and the occasional care packages she got from her mother weren't enough to satisfy her constant cravings for her native foods. She and her husband made a command decision: they would open a Cuban restaurant where Kristy could feel at home any time.
Over the years, her single restaurant has expanded into four locations, including three sandwicherias that take a more casual approach to Cuban cuisine. There are a few entrees, but it's mostly wraps and sandwiches, including, of course, the country's famed Cubano with slow-roasted pork and ham. The minuta de pescado is almost like Caribbean banh mi, with tempura mahi, citrus slaw, and spicy aioli on a whole-grain baguette. The mojitos are another specialty, as are chairs that don't wail for help when you put weight on them.