It’s been just over two months since Luchacubano opened its doors in Riverhead, bringing a splash of color and Cuban flair to Main Street.
“The community has really taken to the concept and the food,” said manager Tracy Smith. He attributes that to the unique, fun and fresh colors and Miami-inspired atmosphere that’s unlike anything else in the area. “In downtown Riverhead, you have some options. Each place has their unique role and I think we provide something that’s outside of the box,” he said.
The simple, traditional and curated menu covers everything from breakfast to dessert and from the get-go, it’s clear that there are standout favorites. We asked Smith about them recently.
How could they be called Luchacubano without a traditional Cuban sandwich on the menu?
“It’s the No. 1 raved-about item,” Smith said, even from customers who have Cuban heritage — the highest compliment. Made with Cuban bread from Blue Duck Bakery, it features the traditional cured ham, swiss cheese and pickles plus roasted pork and mustard.
No one could have predicted how popular this simple starter would be. Grilled cuban bread, gruyere, manchego, queso blanco and garlic butter. “What’s there not to like?” said Smith, who concedes that he doubted how successful it would be at the beginning.
Using soft, slightly sweet Medianoche bread also sourced from Blue Duck Bakery, the french toast is a breakfast favorite (and breakfast is served all day.)
“It’s the best French Toast I’ve ever had,” Smith said, adding that it’s probably the menu item he’s personally had the most thus far. “It gets prepped every single day and we soak it for a few hours,” he said, resulting in an almost custard-like texture.
Piña Shrimp Kabobs
Jumbo shrimp, pineapple and red onion kabobs are served over rice and beans with sliced avocado.
“It’s a very simple, very delicious item,” Smith said. Pair with a fresh mojito for optimal enjoyment.
A must if you’re enjoying breakfast or brunch, the Café Cubano, or Cuban Coffee is a popular choice. It’s made with strong espresso and sweetened with a frothy, whipped sugar foam.
The menu also features a cold brew, cappuccino and latte all made using Aldo’s coffee beans.
“If you like sweet and want something that’s definitely going to wake you up, that’s the way to go,” Smith said of the Cuban coffee.
If you like your coffee with a stronger kick, be sure to try to new espresso martini, which is enjoying a comeback moment at bars everywhere.