Where will you find the “World’s Best” traditional Cuban sandwich? In a Silver Lake shopping center

El Cochinito Silver Lake

Silver Lake — The best traditional Cuban sandwich (in the world, mind you – including Cuba) is at El Cochinito, which has been humbly serving them up on Sunset Boulevard since the late 1980s.

That’s the declaration by the International Cuban Sandwich Festival, which took place earlier this month in Ybor City, Florida, Los Angeles magazine reports.

A post shared by El Cochinito (@cochinitola) on

Cochinito took first place in the category of Traditional/Worlds Best, which meant Cochinito’s sandwich was strictly limited on the ingredients – just Cuban bread, sweet ham, mojo-marinated pork, Swiss cheese, kosher pickles, and mustard. Butter was allowed only if the sandwich was pressed.

The small restaurant wedged between a dental office and a thrift store was founded back in 1988 by Gladys Gutierrez. Itis now run by her grandchildren, somehow surviving all the changes that have taken place Silver Lake, including in the minimall where El Cochinito makes its home. The neighboring tenants include Trois Familia, the French-Mexican hot spot opened by celebrity chefs  Ludo Lefebvre, Jon Shook, and Vinny Dotolo, and Fat Dragon, which serves updated Chinese-American classics.

Co-owner Daniel Navarro  told L.A. Magazine that winning the prize was “super overwhelming.”

You can taste for yourself whether El Cochinito serves up the world’s best traditional Cuban sandwich by ordering a $9 Cubano.

El Cochinito is at 3508 W Sunset Blvd. at Golden Gate Avenue

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  1. I grew up going there and still love the food there. Haven’t been in a while because it rubbed me the wrong way that the staff (which is otherwise fabulous) was playing Central American music instead of Cuban music. Sounds petty, I know, I actually really like Central American music, but not in a Cuban restaurant. There are so few Cuban places in the city that when you go to one it’s nice to have the full cultural experience…the food and the music go hand and hand.

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