Neighborhood Joints

$7 at La Esquina Tropical in Little Havana

La Esquina Tropical (1060 SW Eighth St., Miami), or the Tropical Corner if you don't speak Miami, is a Little Havana minimart with a lunch counter and coffee window. Peep game on that bungeed-up water cooler -- it's an MIA trademark. Short Order stopped by yesterday around 3:30 p.m. for a bite to eat and bought a ham croqueta, beef empanada, pan con bistec (steak sandwich), and a colada (Cuban jet fuel). The bill came to $6.85. We wouldn't say it's the best place of its kind, and there are many like it in Dade County, but just so you know, this one is open from 7 a.m. to 10 p.m. every day except Sunday, when its closes at 9, and unlike other Little Havana spots of its kind, it accepts debit cards.

Following are some pictures of and thoughts about the food.

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Jacob Katel
Contact: Jacob Katel