Lunch at La Valentina, Long Branch

(Joon) #21

I went there a couple times when they first opened, and it was really underwhelming. Looking at the yelp reviews seems like they’re doing good work though. Now I want a sandwich!


Do you ever not want a sandwich, @joonjoon ? :joy:

(Eat Me !) #23

Hey Seal, you ever tried el Poblano on Bayard st ?

They do a big carry bis with the hospital and the courts.



If it is the place I’m thinking of, my coworker says they have some great pernil. He is Cuban too and says it is great. Lmk :slight_smile:


Is this the chain restaurant seal? The one I’m talking about is like the Guatemalan version of kfc. It’s fast food and delicious!

(Joon) #26

I got a cuban sandwich from the Cuban place in Asbury today. My conclusion: I don’t like cuban sandwiches.

Ever keep something in your life and pretend you like it for years and years because you feel like you should? Well, that’s the cuban for me. It’s just a glorified ham sandwich. I don’t like it, and I’m not afraid to admit it now.

At this place they use chopped pernil/roast pork for the pork portion of the program. It was fine, but at the end of the day half the sandwich is cheap deli ham. A nice bonus is that if you ask for some hot sauce they’ll give you some green salsa, which makes the sandwich much, much better. I think next time I’ll try their lechon sandwich, which seems like the same sandwich minus the ham.

Their oxtail looks fantastic and I will definitely be returning for a big pile of that action. And their 6.95 lunch specials look really great for the money.

For similar types of food, I think I prefer Caribbean restaurant (technically Peruvian) on Main st. But I’m going to pop in and try a couple other things.


Fwiw, the papagallos Cubano resembles nothing like you have probably seen. Picture some Mexican dude half tuned up on tacate making a fat sandwich with Mexican ingredients. This is nothing like anything Cuban at all. I turned a few people on to it at work and people liked it. The sandwich is super “rich” and a half usually does ok for me. The fun part is the variable factor. Depending on who makes it you get a different assortment of meats lol…I’m serious :slight_smile:

(Joon) #28

So apparently I have a favorite new oxtail in town now. Cuban Cafe does an awesome version, and the best part about it - they PILE IT HIGH. At so many places when you get something like oxtail they load you up with rice and beans and you get a piddling portion of the meat. NOT HERE. It’s almost absurd how much food they give you. Plus it’s only TEN BUCKS!!

Oh, and ask for a little salsa on the side for some extra zing.

(Eat Me !) #29

Ingredients maketh the Sammie. The real ones in South Beach have home roasted ham and pork. Then they put em in a grill with lots of melty Swiss on a smushed toasted fresh Cuban roll.

If the ingredients are not fresh, it’s just not right.

And there are a lot of bad Cubans, and bad Ruebens, out there.

(David) #30

Gabby’s has only 3 locations, all in New Brunswick, so they are not the chicken chain.

Best to go on a Friday for lunch as they make a LOT of good specials including a great spicy goat.


Damn that is looking good. I dont go to asbury much but this is on my radar.


OMG. Now I have to see how late they’re open




Half bird was tasty but not seasoned. I salted it up. They got the skin right.

Beans were weak and rice decent.

8.50 for half bird + 2 sides…not bad.

The 7.50 linos 1/2 bird cooked over wood with fries and rice/beans is a lot better seasoned but this was a decent dish. The fries aren’t great but it is a substantial dish and fills me up. I just load the fries up with hot sauce.


Has anyone been to long branch BBQ lately? I haven’t been in a while. Now that port chop has priced themselves out of the market I might be hitting that spot more often.

(Joe K) #36

I agree with Joon. The oxtails at Cuban Cafe are awesome. The only other spots that have them are Jamaican and can be pricey.

(Roland) #37

Cuban Cafe is a regular stop of mine. If oxtails are being served they just fix me a plate when I walk in.
The Cuban sandwich is massive and my wife will make a few meals out of it.
Lunch specials are inexpensive all day

(Eat Me !) #38

(Joon) #39

Nice to meet fellow oxtail fans! A much simpler but excellent preparation can also be had at Jameson’s. At the table is supposed to have it but every time I’ve gone there they’ve not had it or run out. :frowning:


Simply Southern in Belmar has it too… I’ve been waiting on cold weather to order it :blush: