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Yiya's Gourmet Cuban Bakery More Than Pastelitos

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A New Times 2009 "Best of Miami" winner,

Yiya's Gourmet Cuban Bakery certainly has a lot of charm. The place has an

extensive menu that goes beyond Cuban staples. There are guava and cheese

pastries (95 cents each) and pan con lechón ($5.65). Situated on NE 79th

Street, it's definitely worth making a point to visit for breakfast,

baked goods, or in this instance, lunch.

The parking situation

isn't the best. There are a few meters out front where cars were

receiving tickets as we made our way in. The lot next door belongs to

Mi Toro Grill, where signs threatening towing are posted.

When

we walked in and asked if we should take a seat or order first, the woman

behind the counter said we could look at a menu on the table and then

order. She appeared overwhelmed as she multitasked by working the

counter and the tables. Only one table -- that had yet to be cleared --

contained a menu. We ordered at the counter and then sat at a

quaint table for two beside the window.

Yiya's has tall tables and café-style tables for two. There are also couches and chairs to
settle back in with a cup of java. The atmosphere is casual and chic yet full of industrial vibrancy and metropolitan energy.

Although our smoking-hot cappuccino ($1.95) and café con leche ($1.95) were served momentarily, we waited almost 20 minutes for two sandwiches. The chicken ciabatta ($6.75) is a pressed Italian sandwich filled with roast chicken breast (not the heartiest piece, but enough), lettuce, tomatoes, and a perfect honey mustard sauce that completes a sophisticated taste. The rustic tomato ciabatta ($6.55) is filled with rustic
tomatoes, mozzarella, and basil. Sides would be a nice touch, such as
a pickle, chips, and/or a pasta or potato salad. Fries cost an additional $1.25. A little freebie isn't too much to ask for, though.

Yiya's was not packed on a recent Saturday morning around 11:30, so the long wait and delayed service was inexcusable. Having another employee on the floor and/or in the kitchen could help shore things up and keep patrons' minds on a delightful cup of coffee, book, or
date. Yiya's is open Tuesday through Friday 8 a.m. to 6:30 p.m. and Saturday
9 a.m. to 5 p.m.

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