Over on Baymeadows Road sits 1928 Cuban Bistro, a quaint little cafe that serves authentic Cuban coffee and food, including Cuban sandwiches, croquetas, empanadas and pastries.
"I am a Miami girl at heart," said owner, Rebecca Gonzalez. "When I moved up here [four years ago], I was missing the [Cuban] flavor, the culture, the bakeries. I was just like, 'I'm going to open something myself.'"
Last Friday, after two months of preparations, Gonzalez opened 1928 Cuban Bistro located at 3928 Baymeadows Rd. No. 9. Everything about it, she says, is in tribute to her grandfather, the man who was her big male role model.
"My grandfather, 1928 is his birth year," she said. "We opened it on his birthday. We have pink because it's his favorite color. And of course, the music lyric on the wall from a song he used to sing to my grandmother."
Gonzalez is a first-generation Cuban American, like her husband, Adrian. She said her family moved up to the First Coast from Miami, primarily to enroll their kids in the St. Johns County Schools system, known for their A-rating.
Story continues below. Scroll through pictures below to see the menu.
When it comes to the food you can find at 1928 Cuban Bistro, they are based on family recipes.
"My mom is the one who taught me how to make the pork, the soup," she said.
Pointing at the menu, she also explained that her family helped inspire some of the menu items.
"My two aunts are featured on there," she said. "The youngest aunt liked the coffee 'La Nani' and the other inspired 'Piry's Croqueta Preparada' sandwich."
On opening day, Gonzalez said their Cuban sandwiches were a hit, causing them to sell out of the roasted pork hours before closing. (The sandwich is made of roast pork, ham, swiss cheese, picks and mustard on Cuban bread.)
She said a great alternative to the Cuban is Piry's Croqueta Preparada sandwich. It generally consists of roast pork, too, but she said it is just as delicious without. Without pork, it's made of ham, swiss, ham croquetas, pickles and mustard on Cuban bread.
Some other popular menu items included the croquetas and Cuban beef empanadas. Gonzalez also said any salad ordered can be turned into a wrap.
1928 Cuban Bistro is giving customers 10 percent off by checking in on Facebook or Instagram. This deal lasts throughout October.
- Monday: Closed
- Tuesday to Saturday: 8 a.m. to 8 p.m.
- Sunday: 8 a.m. to 4 p.m.
Phone number: 904-683-8104