My first time at La Camaronera in Little Havana happened when one of the first food trucks in Miami parked in a lot near them. I walked over to take a gander at what was going on inside. The place was packed, and there were no seats. It only had a standing counter space.
I decided right then that I would return with my Dad in tow to check this place out. He had been to La Camaronera before, so I was the rookie this time around.
We started with the Bollitos de Carita (black-eyed pea fritters). I really couldn’t explain much to you about them other than the fact that they’re very addictive. While I ordered the Camarones Fritos (fried shrimp), my pops had the Original Pan con Minuta (fried snapper sandwich).
The breaded shrimp were crispy and delicious. The shrimp are tossed in a ketchup-based sauce, breaded then fried. I had never heard of a ketchup-based breading technique, but hey, it works.
The Original Pan con Minuta (minuta means that they butterfly cut the fish) still has its tail attached. I’m going to go out on a limb here and say that some people eat the tail (actually I know they do).
The sandwich is topped with chopped onions, ketchup, and tartar sauce on a fresh and squishy Cuban bread roll. A dab of their housemade hot sauce will next level your sandwich.
The Camaronera Sandwich has the fried shrimp with chopped onions, ketchup, and tartar sauce on a Cuban bread roll. While the breaded shrimp again was great, the sandwich took it to another level. You’d think I was done, but I wasn’t. It was key lime pie time.
The pie was creamy and tart. I loved it because it was a great way to end the meal.
One other piece of valuable information, La Camaronera, also functions as a fresh seafood market. Plus, you can pick a fish out of the refrigerated case and have them fry it for you right there.
A few years after my initial visit La Camaronera opened up an addition next door with tables and table service, It was initially a stand at the counter to eat kind of deal since the restaurant opened its doors in 1976.
If you’re from out of town and want to take in a unique Miami experience with great food, then this is the place for you. La Camaronera is a landmark in Miami, so for those of you from South Florida who have never been here, for shame.
1952 West Flagler Street