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We drove up Hillsborough Ave tonight and ate dinner at Mi Bandera Restaurant.  I can’t even tell you how many times I’ve driven right by it and never even noticed it was there.  It’s in a small shopping center on the opposite corner of the Ranch House Restaurant.  The dominant language for both staff and customers is Spanish and the whole place had a very community type feel to it.  You could tell it has a lot of regular customers just by the greetings and smiles.

Our waitress started us off with some bread which was quite awesome.

Let’s face it, bread is one of my favorite things, and when it’s served warm smothered in butter and garlic, I’m one happy gal.  We ordered a couple of appetizers, some calamari and an empanada.

The enpanada was very tasty.  It had a mixture of potato and beef in it.  It was very crispy on the outside and the flavors were excellent.  Loren really liked the salsa that came with it.   At $1 each, we should have just gotten a few of them. 

The calamari, unfortunately, was the downfall of the meal.

Completely overcooked and totally inedible.  It was like trying to bite into rubber.  Luckily our meals came out pretty quick.

Have you ever watched Diners, Drive-Ins and Dives?  Do you remember the episode where the guy was making mofongo?  Well, they had mofongo on the menu and how in the world were we supposed to pass that up after Guy Fieri was so enthralled by it?

Loren ordered it with fried pork.  It was interesting.  Fried green plantains smashed with lots of garlic, plus a whole bunch of other stuff in it.  It was very unique and tasty.  He said the pork was good too.  It came with another sauce on the side, a green chimichurri sauce that he really liked.

I wasn’t feeling very adventurous tonight, so just ordered the chicken breast with mushroom sauce which came with three sides.   I got rice, red beans, and boiled red potatoes.

The mushroom sauce was just like a marsala sauce.  It was very good.  The chicken was pounded very thin which made it a little tough.  The red beans had a lot of flavor to them.  There was enough food on this plate for 3 meals.   We both ended up taking a lot of food home for lunch tomorrow.  Our waitress was very friendly and seemed genuinely sincere about us having an enjoyable meal.  Overall, the flavors were very good throughout the dishes.   Total bill was $31. 

Mi Bandera Restaurant
7748 W Hillsborough Ave
Tampa, FL
813-243-8727



Mi bandera on Urbanspoon

Food4/5
Service4/5
Atmosphere3/5
Value4/5
3.9/5
  • 0 Comments
  • Filed under: Columbian, Tampa
  • Not too many people in Cuban Breezes tonight.  I figured it’d be crowded since the football playoffs were tonight, but since they close at 8pm on Sunday, it makes sense that people wouldn’t want to have to leave halfway through the game.

    Loren got the masitas with some ultimate black beans and a salad.

    He said the pork was very tender and flavorful.  He even had a little left over for tomorrow.  I ordered the fricase de pollo with beans.

    This is one of my favorite dishes here.  It’s got some wonderful flavors and textures with just a little bit of spice.  I kept telling myself to save some for tomorrow, but I ended up eating the entire thing. 

    And yet, I still managed to save room for the chocolate lava cake.

    Thick, rich, chocolately oozing warmth with some vanilla ice cream.  It was yummy.  We had a $10 Restaurant.com coupon, so the total bill after the coupon was $18.

    Cuban Breezes
    13980 W Hillsborough Ave
    Tampa, FL
    813-814-9939

    Cuban Breezes on Urbanspoon

    Food4/5
    Service4/5
    Atmosphere3/5
    Value4/5
    3.9/5
  • 0 Comments
  • Filed under: Cuban, Dessert, Oldsmar
  • Let’s face it, we eat at Cuban Breezes a lot.  We just can’t help it.  The food is consistently good and the prices are great.  Especially when you have a Restaurant.com coupon to boot.  $10 off when you spend $20, you just can’t beat that for lunch.

    We started off with the Pan con Queso y Tomate aka grilled cheese and tomato on Cuban bread.

    I think I could have just eaten this for lunch and been happy.  Their Cuban bread is so light and fluffy, add some garlic spread, melted cheese, and tomatoes and you’ve got a little bit of heaven in your mouth. 

    For my entree, I ordered the Fricase de Pollo,  shredded chicken and diced potatoes simmered in a tomato-based sauce over rice.

    When it comes to the table, the aroma is amazing.  Everything is tender and flavorful.  Half of it came home with me for dinner.  It was so comforting and warm on a chilly Florida day.
    Loren got the ultimate beans and rice with lechon, their marinated shredded pork.

    Fresh and tasty as always.  After the coupon, the total bill was $13.  You just can’t beat the value for the wonderfully consistent fresh and tasty food.

    Cuban Breezes
    13980 W Hillsborough Ave
    Tampa, FL
    813-814-9939

    Cuban Breezes on Urbanspoon

    Food5/5
    Service4/5
    Atmosphere3/5
    Value5/5
    4.4/5
  • 0 Comments
  • Filed under: Cuban, Oldsmar
  • We eat at Cuban Breezes quite a bit since it’s close, inexpensive, and the food’s pretty good.  Loren and I went there for lunch today.  He ordered a Havana burger with fries and I ordered a chicken philly with rice & beans.

    Loren was only able to eat half of the Havana burger.  It’s a half pound burger and very filling.  Their seasoned fries are yummy.

    Unfortunately, either the waitress or the kitchen didn’t get my order right and it came out as a chicken wrap.  Fortunately, though, when I told them it wasn’t right, they very quickly made it right and took it off the bill.   That’s the kind of service we’ve come to appreciate here. 

    The chicken philly has onions and peppers on their delicious Cuban bread.  I drench it in Havana sauce and my taste buds are happy.  Total bill was $9 for the burger and a drink.  

    Cuban Breezes
    13980 W Hillsborough Ave
    Tampa, FL

    Cuban Breezes on Urbanspoon

    Food4/5
    Service4/5
    Atmosphere3/5
    Value4/5
    3.9/5
  • 0 Comments
  • Filed under: Cuban, Oldsmar
  • We went back to Pico Rojo tonight because we had a $10 coupon only to find out they’re no longer accepting any coupons. 

    We ordered the whole chicken meal which came with 4 sides.

    The rice and beans were good, the fried cheese, not so much.  It was rubbery and didn’t have any flavor whatsoever.

    I liked the cole slaw, it had a nice tangy flavor.  I didn’t like the plantains though.  They were kind of tough.  The chicken, however, was as good as we remembered it from the last time we were here.  It has a nice texture and flavor.  And we also had to get the chicken empanadas.

    This is just one of the tastiest empanadas around.  So many different flavors going on inside.   Total dinner was $30, but we had quite a bit of leftovers.

    Pico Rojo
    2475 McMullen Booth Rd, Ste E
    Clearwater, FL
    727-474-3826

    Pico Rojo on Urbanspoon

    Food4/5
    Service3/5
    Atmosphere3/5
    Value3/5
    3.4/5