La Carreta

La Carreta doesn't serve the most gourmet Cuban food in Miami, but with multiple locations, it's a convenient place to get the classics. The Little Havana location is a stand-alone building guarded by a colorful rooster statue. The menu is an extensive list of Cuban dishes such as ropa vieja ($8.95), picadillo ($6.50), and palomilla ($10.25), plus some American - chicken wings and spare ribs in barbecue sauce - and Spanish-inspired fare. Stick to the Cuban basics. Each day, the restaurant offers a selection of three or four specials, and weekday lunch deals include breaded pork chop, shrimp creole, and fried grouper for less than $10. La Carreta is not only a fast, inexpensive lunch or dinner spot but also a good breakfast or late-night snack stop (it's open till 5 a.m. on weekends) because of its prime Eighth Street location and to-go Cuban cafecito.

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