La Rey de las Fritas has been serving Cuban food in Miami for 40 years. They originated and are known for “La original Frita Cubana” – a Cuban-style burger they invented. It is a ground beef patty with sautéed onions that is topped with a mound of shoestring fried potatoes on a fluffy Cuban roll. There are several locations but we visited what we think was the original. Located in a strip shopping center, it was a large place with 2 U-shaped counters with stools facing toward the kitchen and the opposite wall had booth seating. It was bright and a bit sterile, but managed to get a fair number of people both eating in and taking out. Their famous burgers are offered with a number of variations and otherwise they had a large menu of Cuban dishes. They also had shakes and drinks made from lots of different fruits and so we also tried a mango shake or Batidos. The sandwich was interesting but not killer however the shake was lovely.
The Frita Cubana is 100% ground beef and infused with a secret recipe of herbs and spices. It comes out looking quite red. It was not spicy and the onions were barely cooked. We tried a Frita Doble which meant a double meat patty, double fries and double onions and it was just $8.75, The bun was nicely soft but I could have used a fork to scoop up all the onions and fries that fell out every time I picked it up. The little fries were crisp and delicious. It was different and fun.
The mango batido is as much a smoothie as a shake – thick and delicious. The mango flavor did come through and it was thick enough for the straw to stand up without falling. There was no spoon to eat it with, though. It would be fun to try the server’s other favorite, Mamey. another tropical fruit I’m not familiar with. A definite yes on this order.