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Food - Drink
Porto's: LA's Iconic Cuban Bakery That Always Has A Line Out The Door
Whether or not you live in Southern California, you may have heard of Porto’s Bakery & Cafe. Famous for the lines out the door and Cuban-inspired delicacies, Porto's Bakery is absolutely worth the hype, and it’s not only a SoCal legend but also a true success story that starts back in the 1960s Castro-era Cuba.
Porto's History
In 1962, Rosa Porto and her husband petitioned to leave Cuba, but the couple didn’t arrive in Los Angeles until 1971, so to support them in the interim, she began an illegal bakery. When they arrived in L.A., she quickly began making cakes for fellow Cuban refugees and neighbors until she opened the first Porto’s location in Echo Park.
Rosa Porto expressed that Porto’s main goal was to adapt to the community and welcome everyone. While the bulk of Porto's menu is Hispanic and Cuban-inspired, it's constantly updated to meet the tastes of the ever-evolving community, and if you look closely you can see Mexican, French, and Filipino influences.
What to Try
For something sweet, try Porto’s cheese rolls, made with puff pastry, cream cheese, and sugar, or the guava and cheese strudel called the refugiado, or "refugee.” Popular savory options include their potato balls — deep-fried potato balls stuffed with beef, pepper, onion, and olive — or their Spanish-style croquetas.
How to Visit
The bakery has six locations throughout Los Angeles that you can visit, but be prepared to wait in line. Otherwise, you can place online pastry and cake orders for pick up, or the bakery offers delivery on many of their signature items and bake-at-home options where they will ship you their pastries frozen.