Monday, October 09, 2006

Quick Bites - Brief Review of Strawberry Hut, 1505 N Wheeler St, Plant City, FL

I actually ate at the Strawberry Hut Sandwich Shoppe this summer and kept meaning to do a full review. So, I'm putting this Quick Bite together to give a brief review of the Hut. And a Hut it certainly is. I actually found out about the Strawberry Hut from a message board where a local Tampa resident raved about the place and their Cuban sandwiches. Being formerly from Miami, I was eager to check out the Hut's Cubans, since I haven't really found authentic ones up here in Orlando. Not knowing what to expect, I packed up the boys and Grandma and Grandpa and we set out west on I-4. About 40 minutes later (yes, I really did travel almost 45 minutes just to try a place to eat lunch), we approached Exit 21 on I-4 and headed south on Wheeler Street. We kept our eyes peeled for a sign for the restaurant and went right by it. It was when we realized the addresses were not correct that we backtracked and found the Strawberry Hut.

Yep, there it is in the picture. Kind of looks like a walk-up Dairy Queen. No indoor seating, no restrooms, just a counter to order your food from, nothing fancy at all. Oh, and we were lucky it was Saturday, it turns out the Strawberry Hut is closed on Sundays - that wouldn't have been a good thing. But, we had come all this way, and people did rave about it, so we ordered up. The adults all ordered the Cuban combo for $5.75, which comes with a medium Cuban sandwich, chips, and a soda. I upgraded my drink to a shake - strawberry naturally - hey, we are in Plant City, home of the famous Strawberry Festival! They actually had a kiddie meal available - a small sandwich, Cheetos, a cookie, a drink, and a toy for $2.60 - so both boys got that.

After our orders were ready, we headed over to the picnic table next to the Hut. My Cuban sandwich was pretty large, pressed nice and flat, and had a nice portion of meat and cheese topped with a mayo dressing and tomatoes. I thought it was delicious, as was the strawberry shake. Grandpa, being more of a Cuban sandwich traditionalist, thought it was okay but was put-off by the dressing (he's right, they don't make them like that in Miami), and that it wasn't the right mix of meats. I didn't worry too much about that as long as it tasted good! The boys' sandwiches were small - dinner-roll size - but were perfect for their appetites along with the chips.
So, if you find yourself halfway to Tampa and are getting hungry for lunch, stop off at exit 21 to check out the Strawberry Hut. At least stop for a strawberry shake for goodness sake!


Anonymous said...

Hi there...I am also from Clermont...teacher, love to cook, bring my kids around....If you really want the most "authentic" Cuban you have to go to Black Bean Cafe in Winter Park (call first to check they are open). It is small and only seats a few...but, the best. MamaB's Subs in downtown Orlando on Rt. 50 near the superb,too. To die for.

Copyright © by Restaurant Mom. All rights reserved.