I discovered this restaurant online while I was searching for a local eatery. Padrino's is being rate one of the top Cuban restaurants in all of Orlando so we decided to endure the 45 min drive to check it out.
Padrino's is located in a mega commercial/retail complex on the surface looked like it was a new development that recently opened. However they have been there for 5 years.
The interior of the restaurant was nice and very clean. The hostess was super friendly and the place is very lively. This is not a place for a romantic dinner, but great for a birthday celebration or just a casual lunch or dinner.
Our server was attentive, friendly and efficient. Just how I like it. When we finished one course she was ready to bring out the next course (we had appetizers, entrees, desert and then a coffee)
There was live music. The one man show sang classic Latin/Spanish hits. Some I heard of and others had no clue. (I'm not Hispanic/Latin) The crowd loved the selection because some tables joined in and sang along.
There was 2 tables celebrating a birthday. The staff will come out with tambourines and other hand held instruments and sing Happy Birthday in Spanish with a Spanish flare. It was very amusing. One table that was celebrating serenaded his wife (the birthday girl). It was very moving and the patrons cheered him on.
Simply put AMAZING. Instead of a bread basket you will receive a basket of fried plantains with a garlic dipping sauce. It was good.
We both ordered mojitos. I had a strawberry mojito and my partner had a mango then a traditional mojito. They were very good but don't expect fresh strawberries or mangoes. It's not that type of restaurant but never the less it was extremely good.
We then ordered an appetizer, the Cuban Sampler. It was a great choice because we were able to try an assortment of traditional Cuban snacks from empanadas, croquetas and several tostones with pico de gallo and salsa.We both ordered the churrasco skirt steaks (medium and medium rare) both were tender, juicy and they were a nice portion. The steaks were accompanied with fried sweet plantains, white rice and a table side serving of black beans.
Of course, I mustered up the room to try the flan. It was very good. The caramel was not burnt. The flan was fluffy, and very tasty.
The only thing that was a disappointment was the coffee and prices. I wanted traditional Cuban coffee and I felt like I got an Italian espresso.
The mojitos was reasonably priced at $8.00 and $7.00. The churrasco skirt steaks were a bit pricey for it only to have rice and black beans and 3 small plantains. I think $19.99 was a bit too much, $15 would have been more reasonable.
No regrets the food was excellent but pricey. Having lives in Miami for 9 years this was food at its best but in Orlando. I would go back but perhaps not the desert and definitely not the coffee.
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