Gas Stations go gourmet

(WSVN) - From the outside, most of SoFlo’s gas stations look like the perfect place to fill ‘er up and grab a hot dog or a Slurpee. But looks can be deceiving. Some gas stations are going gourmet.

Time to fill up … while you’re filling up. On the outside, El Carajo in Miami looks like a normal gas station, but inside you’ll feel like you’ve flown to Spain.

Javier Fonseca, El Carajo: “We are Miami’s most well-known secret, while at the same time we are a hidden gem.”

El Carajo is serving Spanish tapas like bacon-wrapped dates and lamb chops with veggies.

Javier Fonseca: “We try to be a transporting and enriching experience. People coming in, they don’t expect to see what they see.”

And, don’t forget the wine. There are more than 1,000 selections to take home or enjoy there.

Taqueria Morelia in Florida City is going to pump you up.

Araceli Quintas, Taqueria Morelia: “Taqueria Morelia is authentic Mexican food, family recipes, every day freshly made.”

This family-owned spot shares a space with a gas station.

Araceli Quintas: “Some people mistake this for a gas station, and they are like, ‘Can we get $10 on pump 2?’ And we are like, ‘No, the gas station is next door.'”

Here leaded and unleaded can mean the gas … or how spicy you want your salsa.

Christopher Kagan, customer: “This was a first. I was shocked to see it next to the gas station. I thought the food was great, and it’s convenient.”

From the tortillas, to the tacos, to the salsa — it’s all from scratch.

Christopher Kagan: “I thought it was great. I would come back. I might have to purposely reroute my trip to come and eat.”

You’ll want to park it at Mendez Fuel outside Coral Gables. This organic food will get your motor running.

Michael Mendez, Mendez Fuel: “We offer much more alternative than your typical gas station that we that we’ve all grown up used to.”

Grab a sandwich or a smoothie. Toss back their own brand of cold-pressed juice or fill up on an açaí or dragon fruit bowl.

Michael Mendez: “It’s kind of like a yogurt. You put your toppings and you build your own.”

Necessity is the mother of invention — and our stomachs get to benefit.

Michael Mendez: “You have to try and be different, because you have to try and get that person from the pump to come in and spend more money when they’re already spending a lot of money on fuel.”

El Carajo
2465 S.W. 17th Ave.
Miami, FL 33145
(305) 856-2424

Taqueria Morelia
961 W. Palm Drive
Florida City, FL 33034
(305) 247-7552

Mendez Fuel
3201 Coral Way
Miami, FL 33145
(305) 443-2976

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