What do El Mago de la Frita (5828 S.W. 8th St., West Miami, 305.266.8486) in West Miami and President Barack Obama have in common? It seems the former was one of Obama’s stops during a recent trip to Miami. The president popped into the 25-year-old restaurant with Congressional hopeful Joe Garcia, a regular at the Miami staple, to grub on some of the Magic City’s best fritas (they won the Burgie for Best Frita).
On the menu for President Obama: six fritas with cheese, one frita without cheese and a Materva—the most well rounded, Cuban meal, if there ever was one. Patrons, workers and frita magician himself, Ortelio Cardenas, all attest to President Obama’s graciousness and charm, which, to Obama’s benefit, overruled the rookie mistake of a) ordering a frita with cheese (they’re best served as-is) and b) walking into a Cuban restaurant swarming with Republicans. Cardenas says Obama’s visit made him feel as if he had won the lottery… the public relations lottery, that is. [via Miami New Times]