La Isla's has mastered the Papa Rellena. I could not get enough of this ball of fluffy mashed potatoes with spicy meat in the center. It was like opening a box within a box, the flavor just kept coming undone in my mouth. The dipping sauce had a kick to it: that was inviting and dangerous, to the preservation of my taste buds. But I didn't care, I was going to finish this bad boy. I took breaks, with the Arroz con Gandules (yellow rice with Pigeon Peas) and a can of Classic Coke. It was delectable, but I kept going back to the Big Papa.
I was not the only one obsessed with their plate choices. The guy next to me was making food porn with his cell phone. I quickly interjected and asked if he was a foodie. And YES, he was: and allowed me to get in on the action. So we both shared our plates, instagrams and snapped away. He also shared his Yuca with me: just a small bite. It was golden yum with a shot of minced garlic on top. Wish I had ordered some, but I was plenty full. I watched as he devoured his El Cubano: a sandwich with roasted pork, ham, Swiss cheese and a thin pickle on Cuban bread lathered in garlic mojo. I felt like I just had a "When Harry Met Sally" moment, but there was no faking here. Our foodie senses had climaxed with so much robust flavors.
To cleanse our palates and take in the moment, we both ordered the Cuban Espresso with a shot of miracle. The thick froth was a delight on my lips, as I sipped away. Ahhhh, I felt like I could close my eyes and wake up in Havana, Cuba.
Instead, I was sitting elbow to elbow with a foodie and many locals in the "Mile Square". But when I need to escape the busy city life, I can go to La Isla's for authentic Cuban Food, great people and enjoy a Great Big Ball of Fire... Papa Rellena.
Note: La Isla's is so hot, not even heat guru Bobby Flay could beat Owner Omar Giner in a "throwdown" on Throwdown with Bobby Flay. The infamous Omar's Stuffed French Toast prevailed: filled with Strawberry and Guava Cream Cheese, coated with almonds and corn flakes.
La Isla Restaurant
104 Washington Street, Hoboken, NJ 07030
Tel 201 659-8197
Fax 201 659-8320
Sorry, reservations not taken
We are a BYOB with no cork fees
Credit Cards Welcome