A little bit of the Caribbean comes to San Mateo

Famous for our amazing restaurant scene, San Mateo has become a foodie haven with residents and visitors alike loving what is being served up on the Peninsula. With people heralding from across the globe, San Mateo has the benefit of a diverse population, with people bringing their regional culture, heritage and culinary arts for all to enjoy. If you find yourself in search of something a bit different, why not try Cuban food at Cuban Kitchen? A taste of the Caribbean has come to San Mateo and is serving up island deliciousness with each entrée.

A little background. Cuban Kitchen launched in February of 2010, in the form of a gourmet lunch truck. The mobile unit hit the road and began serving major cities on the East Coast, including NYC and Jersey City. By summer of that year, the FEDEX truck turned gourmet Cuban kitchen had become a staple for many throughout the region, winning over hearts and stomachs at each and every stop.

The accolades continued as the mobile Cuban food truck was voted “Best of Season 2010” by NJ Star Ledger’s Munch Mobile. Excellent reviews followed in various food blogs, magazines, and other foodie media venues and the little truck, which used to deliver packages, was now delivering up some of the best Cuban food in the region.

Circle around to 2015. The owner of Cuban Kitchen, Lynna Martinez, relocated to the Bay Area and has opened a new brick-n-mortar version of her Food Truck in our town of San Mateo. Cuban Kitchen is more than just a restaurant; it also has a line of proprietary sauces, marinades, specialty drinks and more.

Empanadas - Credit: https://www.facebook.com/qbacubankitchen

Empanadas – Credit: https://www.facebook.com/qbacubankitchen

So what will you find at Cuban Kitchen? Here are a few of their menu items to give you a sampling:

Cuban Pork – Lechón:  marinated and braised in signature garlic-cumin adobo and served with aromatic white rice, Cuban black beans, sweet plantain, mojo (pickled onions), and specialty Guava-Habanero BBQ sauce on the side.

Mojito Chicken: marinated then grilled in signature lemon-garlic mojo, and served with aromatic white rice, Cuban black beans, sweet plantain, mojo (pickled onions), and creamy Garlic-Aioli sauce on the side.

Veggies – “Veg y Sofrito”: grilled red & green bell peppers, red onions, zucchini, seasoned in smoky Spanish paprika spice blend – main ingredient imported from Spain – and served rice, beans and sweet plantain.

And of course,

the “best” Cubano sandwich: sweet honey ham, Cuban pulled pork, mojo, imported swiss cheese, pickles, pressed hot on a french baguette and served with choice of Cuban black beans and rice or side salad.

Yelpers agree that Cuban Kitchen is a great addition to our San Mateo food scene:

Happened to drive by and decided to stop in and enjoy some Cuban food! We had great customer service and AMAZING FOOD! Can’t go wrong there, definitely will be coming back, you’ll feel like you’ve known Lynna forever!!!!!! Loved the fact that they asked for feedback for the food! I know there will be lines out the door for this place once word spreads! Beyond excited that Cuban food is now a short drive away!Ámbar B.

Every time I eat here, I’m more impressed. Such delicious food and friendly staff. Seriously worth a visit – you’ll be sold on the quality. Definitely use the sweet sauce on the lechon, it turns it into a completely different meal.Namu W.

So happy that there’s FINALLY a Cuban restaurant…some variety in the neighborhood, a New Yorker, so nice that a fellow east coast opened this up here in the peninsula.  Food is delish and the owner and her family are such good people! Definitely will be coming there more often.  Their dinner menu is DELISH and reasonably priced as well! Yummy!Dilenia A.

Sounds like a great addition to our local food scene. Follow along at the Cuban Kitchen website or their social channels on Twitter, Facebook & Instagram for a little taste of the Caribbean, all from the convenience of San Mateo.

Walkscore.com rates Bay Meadows high on the list for walkable locations to live on the San Francisco Peninsula and for good reason! Bay Meadows has a high Walkscore because it is steps from shopping, groceries, parks, Caltrain, a farmer’s market and a few short miles from downtown San Mateo with its burgeoning restaurant scene. Check out our Mosey suggestions for more places to explore on foot!