Two left undone projects recently came together nicely. The Lost Cuban popped up in my Facebook feed about 2 months ago. For a silly reason, I’d been wanting to visit a Cuban restaurant and I couldn’t believe that there was one as close to Cedar Rapids. I’d been plotting how to get to one the next time I hit a larger urban center. My library friend Nancy had said once again that we needed to find a time we could go to lunch so I suggested the Lost Cuban. She agreed and with a little bit of back and forth we set up a time and date. After overcoming the first confusing hurdle to park downtown (watch for another post about that), we found it easily enough.
It isn’t very big, but it’s brightly colored and friendly. There aren’t a bunch of tables, so you might want to nab one first. There are menus in a rack to the side and once you know what you want you can order at the counter. There is an interesting assortment of foreign pops (happily including my favorite Mexican Coke where they use real sugar as a sweetener) and then you have a choice of sandwiches. Although I’m not a big chicken fan normally, I was tempted to try their Arroz y Pollo (Rice and Chicken) which is a signature Cuban dish. Instead I went for their Cuban sandwich which was very good, especially with the special mango sauce that they use on their BBQ and (according to the owner) will soon be available at Hy-Vee. It was an interesting change of pace.
Besides the sandwich I had rice and black beans that were also very good. This is what they said about the meal: “The Cuban sandwich has our roasted pork which we marinate for 3 days in a mojo sauce we make in house, a premium ham, Swiss cheese, dill pickles and mustard it is all on the only Cuban Bread in Iowa an then pressed together to make the hot sandwich. The sauce has not been named yet but we are calling it “Sweet and Sassy” as of recently, it consists of mango, pineapple, guava, habaneros and the dry rub we make for our ribs.”
The lunch crowd was present at 11:00 AM, but not overwhelming. Their contact medium of choice is Facebook and most of the week they seem to be primarily a lunch place with later hours a couple of nights a week. They also cater. So if you want to support a downtown business in the fallout area from the Flood of 2008, try something delicious and different, and get a Mexican Coke, check out the Lost Cuban. Find them on Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/TheLostCuban
And watch a story about them on our local CBS News channel: http://www.cbs2iowa.com/community/features/signature/stories/the-lost-cuban-34.shtml?wap=0
UPDATE August 14, 2015: I didn’t have to do much updating here. I added my signature block.
Sarah S. Uthoff is the main force behind Trundlebed Tales striving to bring the History, Mystery, Magic and Imagination of Laura Ingalls Wilder and other greats of children’s literature and history to life for a new generation. Uthoff is a nationally known Laura Ingalls Wilder authority and has presented at five of the Wilder homesites, many conferences and numerous libraries, museums, and events around the Midwest. Attend one of her programs, schedule one yourself, watch her videos, listen to her podcast, and find her on Facebook, Twitter, Google+, LinkedIn, and Academia.edu. Professionally she is a reference librarian at Kirkwood Community College and director of the Oxford (Iowa) Public Library.