Varadero Cafe: Cuban Food on the Drive
Ever since our visit to Pambiche in Portland a couple of years ago, we’ve been searching for a good Cuban restaurant in Vancouver. The problem is that the extent of most Cuban dishes here is usually just a Cuban sandwich. Sure, there’s a few good Latin restaurants here… but nothing that is decidedly as good as the food that we had at Pambiche.
After hearing about a tiny little shop called Varadero Cafe on Commercial Drive, I’ve been meaning to give this place a try. Cuban food usually gets a rap for being a bit bland but I think it comes down to what you wind up ordering.
We started out with a couple of Empanadas ($3 each). These hot pockets of freshly fried dough (we picked beef and veggie) were light and crispy on the outside and wonderfully flavourful on the inside. I could probably pop a half-dozen of these without a problem.
The Bistec Encebollado ($12.50) is a dish of thinly sliced and grilled marinated beef steak that’s been sautéed with garlic and onions and served with Congri (similar to Moros y Cristianos) which is a mix of black beans and rice. As expected, this is a very filling dish when you factor in the fried plantains and the rice and beans. However, most of the flavour is found in the garlic and onions which adorn the thin beef steak.
The Arroz con Pollo ($12.50) is a dish of garlic fried chicken and rice with bell peppers and onions. I actually really liked the rice in this dish as it had a good amount of flavour to it.
It wasn’t very busy at this tiny little cafe but there’s some good options and I would definitely come back for the empanadas.
2767 Commercial Dr
Posted on March 14, 2019, in Cuban, Restaurant Review and tagged Arroz con Pollo, Bistec Encebollado, Commercial Drive, Cuban, Empanadas, Food, restaurant review, Vancouver. Bookmark the permalink. Leave a comment.