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Glenn Lindgren: Cubans really got it right when they invented Cuban bread.

Jorge Castillo: With a crisp crust on the outside and a lightly textured inside, a warm, fresh- baked loaf of Cuban bread is the next best thing to heaven.

Glenn Lindgren: Although there are some limited areas of the country where you can get a decent loaf of Cuban bread...

Jorge Castillo: ...cities like Chicago and Union City New Jersey...

Glenn Lindgren: ...the best Cuban bread is made in South Florida. In fact, the "Cuban Bread Line" (the Mason Dixon line of Cuban pastry) stretches across the state just north of Tampa.

Eat the Best Cuban Bread

Raúl Musibay: If you go anywhere north of the Cuban Bread Line you have two chances of getting a decent loaf: slim and none.

Jorge Castillo: Yes, you can find Cuban bread at practically every supermarket in Miami. However, the big chain groceries have never quite gotten it right.
Glenn Lindgren: Although these store-made loaves will do in a pinch, the only place to get the real thing is from a Cuban bread bakery.

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The Details

San Lago Bakery, Miami

With its crisp crust and light texture, the best way to enjoy a warm, fresh baked loaf of Cuban bread is with a smear of butter and a hot Cuban café con leche. Although there are bakeries that make real Cuban bread in a few larger cities in the north and in California, the best Cuban bread comes from South Florida. A "Cuban Bread Line" (the Mason-Dixon Line of Cuban baked goods) stretches across the state just north of Tampa. Stray north of the Cuban Bread Line and you have scant chance of getting a genuine loaf.

The Miami bakery loaf is about twice as wide as the slimmer version found in other cities. At some bakeries, you might even find a charred remnant or two of a palmetto leaf, used during baking to create a distinctive cracking along the leaf line. Most Miami bakeries achieve the same effect by slitting the top of the loaf with a knife. After baking, bakeries keep the bread fresh and warm in a huge heated rack right behind the counter. You will never get a cold loaf of bread at a Cuban bakery.

La Segunda Bakery, Tampa

Check out some of our favorite Cuban Bread Bakeries at the links below:
Make your own Cuban Bread
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