Latin Times Magazine Volume 13 No 2 - Page 20

Meet the Winners of the 3rd Annual National Cuban Sandwich Festival! Stone Soup Company 1st Place Traditional 2nd Place Popular Category What is your name? Ilya Benjamin Goldberg Name of your Restaurant? The Stone Soup Company Where is it located? 1517 East 7th Ave YBOR CITY, FL 33605 Do you have a website? www.stonesoupco.com What did winning this contest mean to you? It meant being part of history in the great city of Tampa. It also meant for a benchmark for us to be judged against those with generations of experience. How long have you been making Cuban Sandwiches? About four years. We know some have been making Cuban sandwiches for 100 years but we have found a way to make it better. As much as we respect them, and we are just happy to be here. What makes your Cuban sandwich so special? Love. We love making Cuban sandwiches. It’s completely engineered, from roasting the pork overnight, to the baker bringing us fresh bread daily, to the way we place the pickles and the way we make the cut. It’s consistently the best Cuban in Tampa, the state of Florida, and the USA. There is one more key ingredient that few businesses have, KARMA. We donate all unused ingredients in our Core business of soups to charity. As we sell a cup we track the sales and match those sales with donations. To date we have given over 39,000 cups of soup to local Tampa shelters via Tampa Bay Harvest. This is the best form of feel good, attention, publicity, and good will anyone can get. When you give you get so much more, this transcends the Best Cuban or the Best Soup (creative loafing 2013) it makes us just the best at being good citizens. Do you think you have a chance at winning again next year? Absolutely. There is nothing like this from Tampa to Miami and all across the USA. But we haven’t decided if we are competing because we just feel like we have already won. Docho’s Hot off the Press 1st Place – Popular Vote 2nd Place - Traditional 3rd Place – Non Traditional What is your name? Dave and Debbie Guy Name of your Restaurant? Food Truck- Dochos Hot off the Press Where is it located? We move to where our fans are Do you have a website? We prefer facebook, like us at Docho’s Concession What did winning this contest mean to you?Winning this contest was amazing, it means all of the care and love we put into our sandwich is being recognized. Some people are all about the money, we are all about making people smile. How long have you been making Cuban Sandwiches? We have been making Cuban Sandwiches for 4 years. What makes your Cuban sandwich so special? For some people it is just a sandwich but not for us. We wanted to make sure we did it right. We researched every item we put on our sandwich from the bread to the special mustard that we have shipped in, it can only be purchased in one place in the world THAT is why our sandwich is so special. Do you think you have a chance at winning again next year? We would hope we have a chance of winning but we have seen it in the past where a winner in the past believes they are entitled to the win, we are not like that we will go into this with the same fears, anticipation and excitement we do every year and hope our quality and love shows. Regardless of how we finish next year we are proud of our accomplishments over the past 2 years. This year we placed in all 3 categories. And first with our fans (that is what is important) this is a first time for this contest. We do not take that lightly. Dulce Café 1st Place NonTraditional What is your name? Diane Agudelo & Hector Vega Name of your Restaurant? Dulce Cafe Where is it located? 3310 W Kennedy Blvd Tampa, FL 33609 Do you have a website? www.dulcecafebakery.com What did winning this contest mean to you? It was a big achievement because we are new to the restaurant industry and when coming in the competition and competing against well-established restaurants and experienced competitors, I doubted we could win. How long have you been making Cuban Sandwiches? Not very long at all, just under a year we started in July 2013 What makes your Cuban sandwich so special? Our sandwich is very special because it is a pastry. Our “Puffy Cuban” has all of the deliciousness of a Cuban sandwich wrapped up in a flaky and light pastry. Our ingredients are high quality and we use our own in-house slow roasted pork. Do you think you have a chance at winning again next year? Absolutely, I think that knowing what to expect we can even compete better on all other categories.