Homemade Traditional Cuban Sandwiches with Ham Pork and Cheese
Food - Drink
The Cuban Sandwich Rivalry That Turned Into A Yearly Festival
The iconic Cuban sandwich is made of marinated pork, mustard, pickles, Swiss cheese, and pressed Cuban bread. This American-born sandwich comes from Florida, the state closest to Cuba itself, but the cities of Tampa and Miami both claim the Cuban as their own, leading to a rivalry that even spawned its own festival.
Miami lays claim to the International Cuban Sandwich Festival, which has been held in Centennial Park yearly since 2012. The festival may help bolster Tampa's association with the Cuban, putting it a head over Miami, but its founders, Victor Padilla and his wife Jolie Gonzalez-Padilla, created it to help the homeless.
During the first festival in 2012, a 36-foot-long sandwich was built to help nourish Tampa's homeless population, and by 2020, this grew to a record-breaking 200-foot-long Cuban sandwich. The goal for 2023's festivities (scheduled for May 27 and 28) is even more ambitious: a 280-footer that can satisfy more than 700 people.