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La Camaronera
Photograph: Courtesy La Camaronera

The 13 best Little Havana restaurants in Miami

Eat globally at the best restaurants in Little Havana, serving Mexican food, Cuban sandwiches and even authentic Thai

Virginia Gil
Written by
Virginia Gil
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This should go without saying but the best Little Havana restaurants serve more than just Cuban food. Over the years, Miami’s Latin neighborhood has grown to embrace a wide variety of cuisines, from Thai and Mexican to Spanish. It’s a true melting pot of flavors and cultures that represents Miami as well. You’ll find Miami’s finest Cuban sandwiches alongside several contenders for Miami’s best tacos. Once you’ve eaten your way through the neighborhood, sidle up to one of Miami’s best bars for a cocktail and a little salsa dancing—which is always on the menu in Little Havana.

RECOMMENDED: Full guide to Little Havana

Time Out Market Miami
  • Restaurants
  • Ice cream parlors
  • East Little Havana

Little Havana's—and we'd argue Miami's—most famous ice cream parlor sells all sorts of irresistible, only-in-Miami flavors: The Abuela Maria with crumbled Maria crackers and guava and cream cheese, the flan ice cream with heaps of Cuban rum, the Knaus Berry Farm with bourbon-soaked chunks of those hard-to-get-your-hands-on cinnamon rolls. We could wax poetic all day on Suzy Batlle's flavors but you should just go and try it for yourself.

Best Little Havana restaurants

  • Restaurants
  • Sandwich shops
  • East Little Havana
  • price 1 of 4

This quaint, 25-seat restaurant serves an edited menu of classic Cuban sandwiches and made-to-order batidos (Cuban milkshakes, for the uninitiated). Naturally, the best Cubano in Miami resides here. It consists of mostly housemade ingredients—cured ham, pork brined in-house, fresh pickles and artisanal mustard—plus crusty Cuban bread made specifically to Sanguich's specifications. 

  • Restaurants
  • Seafood
  • East Little Havana
  • price 2 of 4

La Camaronera is a Little Havana institution. The family-owned Cuban fish shack has been doling out all sorts of fried items from the sea, from lobster poppers and fish fingers to popcorn shrimp, for decades. It’s been featured on the Food Network and nearly every person in Miami has tried it and vouch for its greatness: the pan con minuta. Fried snapper on a lightly toasted Cuban roll is the holy grail of fish sandwiches. 

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  • Restaurants
  • Thai
  • East Little Havana
  • price 2 of 4

What is it? Chef Bas’ ode to his native Thailand is a compact restaurant serving above-average curries you will most definitely have to stand in line to try. But every single one is worth it. Part of the shtick here is that you’re only allowed to order once, so make sure the pad see ew with beef and khao soi gai find their way to your table. One’s a noodle dish and the other is a golden curry, and both will blow you away.

  • Restaurants
  • Cafés
  • East Little Havana
  • price 2 of 4

Michelle Bernstein and Julio Cabrera’s Cuban restaurant and lounge transports diners from Little Havana to old-world Cuba with classic cocktails and elevated Latin dishes. The pairing of Bernstein and Cabrera is nothing short of magic manifested in mouthwatering paella croquetas, the Instagrammable chancleta cocktail and so much more contained in a beautifully evocative space.

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  • Bars
  • Cocktail bars
  • East Little Havana
  • price 2 of 4

The only rooftop bar and restaurant in Little Havana sits away from the action on Calle Ocho and offers stellar views of its much glitzier neighbor to the east, Brickell. It’s a gorgeous garden setting dotted with oversized umbrellas and comfy patio furniture, where it’s easy to spend hours sipping on mezcal cocktails and noshing on the tasty veggie-forward fare, such as grilled mushrooms and an heirloom tomato salad—both fresh and bursting with flavor.

  • Restaurants
  • Cuban
  • West Little Havana
  • price 2 of 4

The most famous Cuban restaurant in the world. Really, it says so on the sign. If you didn’t try a Cubano at Versailles, were you even in Miami? Hardly. The Little Havana institution also has the most famous coffee window in the city, swarming with ex-pats and adorable octogenarians sipping their daily cafecito.  

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  • Restaurants
  • Cuban
  • West Little Havana
  • price 1 of 4

One of the city’s original purveyors of juicy Cuban burgers—whose name translates to mean King of the Fritas— reigns supreme in these parts. Trust El Rey for a consistently delicious sandwich made up of a chorizo-beer patty between toasted Cuban bread and topped with shoestring fries. It’s simple yet simply outstanding. 

  • Restaurants
  • Japanese
  • East Little Havana
  • price 3 of 4

This sliver of a sushi restaurant on Calle Ocho proffers pleasant service and fresh sushi. Rolls and pieces are available a la carte but the omakase dinner is the way to go here. It's a generous tasting menu served at the counter, and reservations are a must as there are only eight seats per service. Ahi allows BYO and the staff will be happy to chill your bottle while you dine. 

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  • Restaurants
  • Sandwich shops
  • East Little Havana
  • price 1 of 4

This gritty-looking gastropub decked in graffiti has all the makings of a hip Wynwood restaurant, but you’ll find it deep in Little Havana. It’s a choose-your-adventure kind of dining experience thanks to a vast Latin-fusion menu. Steer Cuban with an order of the lechón buns and vaca frita tostones; go Asian with the wok-charred Brussels sprouts, or try a mix of several cuisines with a serving of the tasty shrimp po’ boy tacos. 

  • Restaurants
  • Mexican
  • East Little Havana
  • price 1 of 4

This bare-bones Mexican restaurant on Calle Ocho ticks all the boxes: cheap, oversize dishes and a statue of La Virgen de Guadalupe, to whom we pray for the bounty Mi Rinconcito bestows on all its hungry diners. The heaping portions of delicious Mexican food served here are not just a bargain (you can easily feed a family of four for $20) but they’re also really tasty.

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  • Restaurants
  • Spanish
  • West Little Havana
  • price 3 of 4

Resembling an old Spanish castle, this charming Little Havana institution beams with live music, chatty servers and large parties tucking into giant paellas. You don’t go to Casa Juancho unless you’re celebrating something or prepared to spend a lot. If the latter is a concern, trust that the ratio of price to fun will always be favorable and the award-winning seafood paella dependably satisfying. 

  • Restaurants
  • Mexican
  • East Little Havana
  • price 2 of 4

A taste of South Beach in Little Havana, this Mexican-themed supper club goes from low-key restaurant to full-on party the later it gets. Fuel up with mini tacos, crudos and assorted Latin fare, plus tequila and mezcal cocktails. Burn off dinner dancing all night to reggaeton at El Santo’s not-so-hidden backroom, El Diablo.

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