Dose of Cuba on Orange Avenue

Since the demise of Elena's Cuban Cafe a few years back, downtown has been sorely lacking an essential element: a low-budget Cuban diner on the main drag. The arrival of Orange Ave. General Store and Cafe remedies that gap.

Located in the former storefront of Barnie's Coffee & Tea Co., the quick dining/takeout cafe is neither a full-service restaurant nor a fully stocked general store. Eclectic memorabilia, collectibles and old-time touches carry out the dime-store-type theme. But this is really a home-style Cuban stop from breakfast till midnight, with vats of black beans and rice; always on hand are media noche sandwiches featuring ham, pork and Swiss cheese; and Cuban bistek (steak) lunch platters. There are non-Cuban sandwich standards offered as well, and the specials are always changing, so you never know exactly what you're going to find.

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