Alberto Domenech, owner of the Latino Market in Palm Coast, was leasing the Bull Creek Fish Camp restaurant building when Flagler County decided in January to tear the building down.
The county said the building was irreparably damaged by floodwater from Hurricanes Ian and Nicole in 2022. So when the owner of the Happy Chef in Bunnell decided to sell the restaurant over the summer, Domenech snapped it up to open Domenech Corner Cuban Restaurant, he said.
"I really appreciate the community. Everybody supports me over here; it's great," he said.
Now Domenech owns the building at 508 N. State Street (also known as U.S. 1) next to the bright green Cricket Wireless store.
Eventually, Domenech said, he wants the restaurant to open earlier and close later, but for now it is open from 8 a.m. to 4 p.m. Sunday through Friday, closed on Saturdays.
The restaurant is still in its soft-opening phase, he said, but he plans to have a grand opening around the holidays.
Domenech Corner serves fresh, authentic Cuban food, he said.
Domenech's wife, Yanelis, is the primary chef at Domenech Corner and will run the restaurant's day-to-day business, Domenech said.
Domenech said he opened the restaurant for Yanelis, who loves to cook and has cooked professionally since 2005. The two have been together since 2007, and she has worked with him the entire time, he said.
Yanelis Domenech said she learned to cook from her grandmother.
"I like cooking. I can cook anything," she said.
Even if someone comes in wanting something off the Cuban menu — like grits or pancakes — she will make it, she said.
The Domenechs are both from Cuba — from the mountains, not Havana, and their food reflects that, they said.
"Comida criolla," Alberto Domenech called it — country-style Cuban food.
Yanelis Domenech said she likes to make Cuban food the way she learned to cook it for other people to try.
"It's my food, the way I make it," she said. "Sometimes people say, 'Oh, it's not a real Cuban sandwich,' but it's my way. For 18 years, I make it the same way."
Alberto Domenech said he has lived in Bunnell for almost 20 years, and he's glad to be able to bring Cuban cuisine and culture to the community.
“I believe Bunnell needs some little change," he said. "This is why we're here, you know — [to] bring the culture: Cuban sandwich, Cuban coffee. It's good that people from Bunnell have something new."