Black Bean Deli: A Cuban Cafe

Papas rellenas platter and a creme soda - the perfect lunch.

In Orlando, there are some places that I've eaten at so often I forget that and haven't already written about them. Yet they are special and part of the food scene here that shouldn't be missed. Perfect example, Black Bean Deli.

I heard about Black Bean Deli for years before I actually ever went. I don't know what took me so long. It's been recognized and written about by Saveur and the NY Times, not to mention the countless on-line and local mentions. This casual Cuban cafe started as primarily a take-out joint and the Winter Park location still feels like it. Seating is minimal (just a few spots at the counter), but the second, newer location in the Mills50 neighborhood boasts ample dining space. Apparently they've got a location at the Amway Center too, but I haven't been there and from what I hear, it's open during events only.

And while the locations are important, the most important thing is the food. I'm not Cuban, but people tell me Black Bean Deli serves the most traditional food in town. All I know is that it's delicious. Literally everything I've had is delicious. My favorites include their pan con lechon sandwich (pulled pork with garlic mojo), the rice and beans, plantains, and every pastry/hand pie they've got in their case. The empanadas are great, the guava pastelito (puff pastry with guava) is flaky and not too sweet. Their tres leches dessert is very good, but after eating a meal (portions are large, just look at above) I'm usually so stuffed I don't make it to dessert.

If you are looking for a casual and quick lunch, it's hard to beat.

Black Bean Deli - Two Locations

Mills50 Orlando 
1835 E. Colonial Dr.
Orlando, FL 32803

Winter Park
325 South Orlando Ave.
Winter Park, FL 32789

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