Since 2006, Fortuna Bakery & Cafe has served as a key Central Florida go-to spot for Colombian and South American pastries and breads. With 10 locations and counting around Orlando, guests can experience the savory aroma of Latin American tradition. Each morning, Fortuna bakers arrive to make the freshest ingredients by hand into delicious breads, pastries, and sweet treats.

Riccardo Panneflek, president of Fortuna Bakery, explains that Hispanic bakeries have enjoyed substantial success in the bread category because of consumer trends favoring more flavorful breads filled or topped with authentic flavors from Mexico and Latin America.

“In America, you will find a lot of neighborhood bakeries. A lot of panaderias have not tried to go for the higher end market. Our bread is different than others,” Panneflek shares. 

New Venezuelan treats are the tequeños combo, bolitos de yuca y queso, bolitos de platano y queso. 

Specialties at Fortuna Bakery include the following: 

The Colombian empanada is one of the bakery’s all-star dishes. They are made with homemade corn flour and filled with either ground meat, chicken, or cheese. The potato empanada is baked with homemade corn flour stuffed with potato.

Another creative item is the tequeño, a true Venezuelan delight. These are made with freshly made white cheese and then wrapped in the most delicious semi-sweet, breaded dough. 

Arepa De Choclo Con Queso is another traditional Colombian dish. This is prepared with sweet corn and packed full of traditional flavors topped with white artisanal cheese.

Cuban bread

Cuban bread is another highlight at panaderías in central Florida. Florida has a robust Cuban population, and customers are eager and excited to find delicious options of Cuban bread at their local stores.

El Zocalo Supermarket in Haines City merchandises Cuban bread in attractive packaging alongside bagged breads for convenient sale.

“Cuban bread is very popular with our customers,” explains Elinor Vargas, store manager for El Zocalo in Haines City,

Acapulco Tropical y Mas in Ellenton, Florida, south of St. Petersburg, features large displays of bagged Cuban bread in several positions, including near the store checkout at a separate merchandising table that draws the eyes directly to the display. The 30,000-square-foot modern store opened in 2020.

“Our kitchen crew starts at 4 a.m. in the morning,” explains Ana Leyva of Acapulco Tropical. “We are known for our homemade breads.”

Sandwich breads

Savory options are a perfect example of how Fortuna Bakery is expanding its bread and bakery sales.

“Our next step is to expand our menu with sandwiches and soups,” explains Panneflek of Fortuna Bakery. “Our customers want real food. Comfort food seems to be the trend now.”

Fortuna Bakery offers a variety of comfort foods that appeal to their ever-growing and diverse group of customers.

Fortuna Bakery specialties include pan de bono, which is a Colombian “magic combination” of crumbly cheese, corn flour, a starch, and an egg, inside naturally gluten free bread that is irresistible.

Palmeritas, also known as elephant ears, are tasty treats made with puff pastry baked with sugar. The perfect snack for any time and you can pair them with coffee or tea.

Pan De Queso is a traditional Colombian cheese bread that's made with all-purpose flour. “It's simple yet tantalizingly flavorful.”

Breads for snacking are immensely popular. Sweet, crispy and gluten-free Colombian buñuelos feature a delicious combination of cassava flour and cornstarch deep fried for a delicious crispy crust.