| February 2, 2011 | 7:00am
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"It's the first one in America," says Alexander Hiller, Director of 100 Montaditos, which just opened this past Friday in midtown Miami (just across from Hurricane Grill & Wings). There are some 200 locations worldwide (in France, Mexico, Portugal, and, mostly, in hometown Spain), so these are no rookie operators. Think of it as The Dollar Store of fast food franchises, although admittedly I've never seen Serrano ham in a Dollar Store. 100 Montaditos serves up plenty of Serrano ham, thin wisps of the precious pork placed in warm, crunchy-crusted, olive oil-drizzled, fresh-from-the-oven bread (the par-baked sort imported from Spain). That's your dollar sandwich right there, which ain't bad.
There are nine other one buck wonders (like pulled bbq pork; smoked salmon; and chorizo). A whole lot of $1.50 montaditos (tortilla Española with chipotle aioli; tuna with caesar dressing; grilled chicken with brava sauce). Muchos
montaditos for $2 (Serrano ham with Iberico cheese; duck mousse with crispy onion; burgers and hot dogs). And $2.50 montaditos such as Serrano ham with pulled pork, Iberico cheese, tomato, and olive oil; tuna with anchovies, shrimp, and aioli; and roast beef with cream cheese, guacamole, and crispy onion.
The half-dozen montaditos sampler plates read like lotto tickets. To wit: The Madrid Sampler of 6 montaditos (#'s 1, 7, 8, 18, 46, and 89). That one's $8. You can choose from a few threesomes for $4, and get a dozen, with olives, for $21.
What do you do with a montadito? Eat one or two or three or more with a beer or two or more. 100 Montaditos serves far fewer beers -- mostly Mahou 5 Estrellas, in 11-ounce bottle ($2.50) or 17-ounce draft ($3). Also: Mahou 5 Estrellas Light.
You can get a 5-beer bucket for $10, and all day on Fridays you can get TWO buckets for $10. Wine, water, juices, soft drinks, coffees, cortados, cafe con leches, and cappuccinos are also on tap, all $2 or less.
Other snacks to go along with the montaditos are a potato chip cone ($1); Spanish olives or roasted mixed nuts ($1.50); and brava potatoes or french fries ($2.50). A quintet of salads go for $4.90. The place is clean, bright, and happy. Flat screen television screens show sports and other suitable Spanish-style sandwich-and-beer entertainment.
Every Wednesday -- that's today -- every montadito on the menu is $1. And a mug of beer is just a buck too if you purchase a montadito. That's a deal.