The Cuban import
Credit: George Motz

The Frita Cubana, El Mago de las Fritas


The Frita Cubana is a Cuban invention, a burger born during the 1940s, when it was commonly sold from street carts. But it doesn't even exist there anymore, and so El Mago ("the magician") in Miami is a treasure for fans of this style of burger, which Motz describes as an "unbelievable taste bomb." The Frita is basically an American hamburger with chorizo spice, a sweet sauce, and shaved fried potatoes served on a Cuban roll. "You can get American cheese on it, but that's for the kids," says Motz. "What's unique is that when they cook it on the flattop, they squirt on that secret sauce so that it caramelizes to create a steaky char." Pair it with a batido fruit milkshake, and you've time-traveled to old Havana.

$3.50; doubles for $5.50
El Mago de las Fritas
5828 SW 8th Street, Miami, FL 33144