One of the biggest and busiest restaurants in the Los Angeles area is a Cuban bakery called Porto’s. No matter what time of the week, each location of the mini-chain overflows with people looking for affordable sandwiches, potato balls, and cheese rolls. In this episode of Cult Following, host Serena Dai visits a massive new location in Buena Park, where thousands of people waited for hours to grab pastries when it first opened.
Besides serving line-drawing fare, Porto’s Bakery & Cafe is a legend in the Cuban community — and in Southern California. After matriarch Rosa fled Cuba for California, she first ran her baking business out of the family’s apartment, then a small space at Silver Lake and Sunset Boulevard. The Porto family opened its Glendale location in 1982, and other locations followed: Rosa’s daughter Betty still runs the business.
Dai and self-declared super-fan comedian Chris Garcia met up with Betty to find out more about what makes Porto’s such a hit.