Miami's Best Flan: Versailles, Cuban Guys, Little Havana and More
Want access to our Best Of picks from your smartphone? Download our free Best Of app for the iPhone or Android phone from the App Store or Google Play. Don't forget to check out the full Best of Miami® 2012 online at bestof.voiceplaces.com.
|All photos by Alex Rodriguez|
|Flan from Versailles.|
Sweet and silky, not too firm, not too soft, creamy or supple... and that's just the people. Flan moves to its own rhythm. Its curves are as sexy as a salsa dancer on a hardwood dance floor -- and it's twice as easy to take home.
A good flan is one that's balanced in all flavors (sweet, eggy, creamy, and caramelized). If it's baked properly, the inside is smooth, with no sign of air bubbles. It shouldn't be too gelatinous or too firm, and should always hold its form. A good flan uses the flavors to compliment one another without any being especially predominant.
Originally hailing from the kitchens of Spain and France, the sweet egg and cream-based custard has found its way into the heart of Latin America. Few other desserts boast the popularity of flan on a restaurant menu. And as the official unofficial "Little Latin America," Miami must provide flan just like immigrants' native countries.
With that in mind, we set out to find the ten best flans in Miami. Our journey took us from Hialeah to Weschester to Midtown and Kendall. We found that Spanish restaurants (surprisingly) didn't have the best flan on the market, and that the best stuff doesn't have to be the most expensive, either. You might be surprised to see who made our list, and who didn't.
|Goat's milk flan.|
Mercadito may be a quasi-chain, but that doesn't mean it couldn't be in the running for our top ten flans list. The flan de cajeta ($7), which is made with goat's milk, is a particularly light flan compared to the most conventional. It's garnished with a cinnamon-sugar chip, and pieces of soft, candied apricot adorn the plate. It's a floral flan that's not too heavy on caramelized syrup, or almibar.
9. Confiteria Buenos Aires Bakery
We knew we'd get a little beef for choosing an Argentine place for great flan, but lo and behold, it made the list. Buenos Aires Bakery has been around for about a decade, but with all the delicious facturas and cakes they serve, has anyone paid attention to the flan? There are two varieties, one with dulce de leche, and one without. For consistency's sake, we ordered the regular flan. The almibar is crazy good -- if you're into caramelized sugar, that is. It's a little more gelatinous than most flans, but we're chocking that up to perhaps a way to keep the price low. After all, flan there is only $2.99.