The tiny spot offers a dim-lit dining space with several tables and a high-top counter where you can eat-in for breakfast, lunch, and dinner; or order take-out from the convenient walk-up counter. Whenever you arrive, do so for the empanadas and burgers -- both a few of Patino's house specialities. And come hungry.
The menu covers all manner of Colombian fast food, including the traditional street food-style burgers and hot dogs the likes you'd find at Miami's La Moon Restaurant, but also a few authentic regional dishes made exactly as you'll find them in Patino's home city of Pereira. Many of the picks are variations of Patino's family recipes, dishes she learned to make from her mother, but also given her own unique twist -- slight variations that make it hard to decide what version you'll order.
Olmstead will insist you order Patino's empanadas ($1). A different breed than the Spanish or South American versions, they're tiny -- a Colombian trait -- with a thick, crunchy, cornmeal shell stuffed with a tasty forcemeat, a flavorful combination of beef and potato blended to a creamy consistency. They're served with a small cup of Patino's own ají picante, a spicy Colombian sauce made with green chile peppers, onion, cilantro, lime juice, vinegar and accented with cumin. Get them on Thursday or Saturday, when you can pick each up for just $.50, all day long.