Mercado de Mariscos
Mercado de Mariscos
Outside the Fishmarket there are several stalls seling Ceviche. I sat down by a stall were there was no TV, as it was quite crowded at some places where football (the world cup) was shown.
You can buy different sizes of ceviche, served in plastic cups and with some biscuits. The small “vaso” was $1.25 and the larger “pinta” was $4 (June 2014). I decided to buy a “pinta” of Ceviche de Pescado (Corvina), but a small would have been enough. There was too much onion in the ceviche and it was quite strong. I have eaten better ceviches.
There are also restaurants at Mercado de Mariscos.
Don René Café
Even though it was evening (18.30) Don René Café had lunch offers for $10 (+tax). I sat down at one of the outdoor tables and ordered the “lunch”. First I was served a vegetable soup and then the main dish. I chose chicken (there was also beef and fish) which was served in a sauce, and with a salad and vegetable rice. As dessert there was a small piece of cake. It all tasted good and I did recommend it to two tourists stopping by the restaurant to see what was on offer. I had also ordered a passion fruit juice for $2 (June 2014).
While I was eating the staff came out with a bug repellent and told me it could be good if I sprayed some on my legs and feet, and yes, I had already noticed the mosquitos!
There are not too many restaurants with outdoor tables in Casco Viejo so when I was hungry one afternoon when I passed Santé I decided to eat there. There are just a few tables on the pavement outside the restaurant and during the week days there are lots of cars in Casco Viejo, so the view is not very nice.
I ordered chicken in mango sauce with rice, and a mango juice. The dish tasted good, but maybe there was too much mango when I also drank mango juice (should have ordered something else to drink) and I would have liked to have just some salad on the plate too. For food and drink it was $17.23 (July 2014).
I stopped at this restaurant because they had outdoor tables at Parque Bolívar. It was a good spot to watch people going by, mostly wedding guests coming from a church.
I ordered lemonade and a cheeseburger with French fries. I must say that the cheeseburger was a disappointment and didn’t taste very good. And it would have been nice to get it on a plate with some salad too. For the meal and juice I paid $12.65 (June 2014).
Dodó – Bon Pan Café
My first morning in Panama City I asked at the hostel for a nice place to eat breakfast, a place where I could have good coffee and a croissant, or some other nice bread. I was recommended Dodó – Bon Pan Café. Unfortunately it was closed and they didn’t open until 9am. I didn’t want to wait that long for breakfast so I went somewhere else.
When I passed by in the late afternoon I saw that they had two outdoor tables and I decided to sit down and drink something. Other people sat indoors where there is A/C, but I prefer to sit outside, even if it is hot and humid.
It was hot and humid, and I had done a lot of walking and sight-seeing during the day, so the cold beer I ordered tasted very good. Two beer with tax was $6.42 (June 2014).
Food courts at shopping malls
There are many shopping malls in Panama City and I visited two of them, Albrook Mall and Multiplaza Mall. . They are both huge and also have many restaurants. Usually I don’t like eating in food courts at malls, but when you are hungry you have to eat.
At Albrook Mall I ate at Crepes and Waffles where I ordered a crepe with chicken, cheese and broccoli. To drink I had a guanabana and lichie smoothie. For crepe and smoothie I paid $8.38 (June 2014). The crepe was good and filling.
At Multiplaza I ate at Go Green, They have different wraps and salads, but no fresh fruit juices. I ordered a wrap called Igo Baja and it tasted good and was also filling. It was $4.90. After eating at Go Green I went to Smoothies and bought a Vitamin Splash for $3.25. For the juices and smoothies they use frozen fruits. There are also frappes.
Casa Sucre Coffeehouse
For the first morning in Panama City I had not bought anything to eat at the hostel for breakfast, so I went to a café and ended up at Casa Sucre coffeehouse, a café situated in Caco Viejo, just a block from the hostel where I stayed.
I ordered an American Coffee and a bagel with cream cheese. It was $5.30 (June 2014). There is WiFi, but it didn’t work when I was there. It was a nice place and it was not too cold (I don’t like places with cold air condition).
At the café they serve sandwiches and pastries, different coffee drinks, juices, sodas etc.
Vita Fruta Bar
I had eaten in the late afternoon, but wanted to have something more, but not too much in the evening. I saw a sign for Vita Fruta Bar and went to check it out, and there I found what I wanted. At Vita Fruta Bar they have smoothies and juices, fruits and yogurt. I bought a yogurt with granola, bananas and coconut to take away and to eat on the balcony at the hostel. It was @4.35 (July 2014).
Lenos Y Carbon: Steaks and seafood on the Causeway
We asked our taxi driver for a recommendation on the Amador Causeway and he took us to Lenos Y Carbon. On a Sunday afternoon at 2:15pm there was still a 25 minute wait for a table and once we did get seated no fewer than 5 people stopped by to take our order so it seemed a little disorganized. The setting was nice overlooking the marina. We were in a little bit of a hurry, the 25 minute wait only gave us about 40 minutes to eat. Once we finally got someone to understand that we were in a bit of a rush, the food was delivered shortly thereafter.
They do take reservations so that might be a good idea on the weekend. They also accept credit cards.
Favorite Dish: This was my least favorite meal in Panama, I ordered the coconut prawns, for $15.25 I got four huge prawns dipped in coconut but instead of being sweet they tasted salty and the dipping sauce was savory not sweet. Hubby got the corvina with seafood sauce, he said it was good. After reading some reviews after I got home, it seems that the steaks are the draw here but I had figured since we were surrounded by water that seafood seemed like a better bet.
Las Tinajas: Folklore show and Panamanian food
Las Tinajas was right around the corner from our hotel and I figured it would be a nice night out on a Saturday night when we had nowhere to be the next morning. Most people go for the dinner show which starts at 9pm on Tuesday-Saturday, we got there right around 9pm and most people were already seated and eating so we should have gotten there a little earlier so we could watch the show after dinner instead of during. Reservations are highly recommended for the show, there were a couple of empty tables but not many. There's a $5 cover charge for the hour long show which features dancers and musicians performing traditional dances.
Favorite Dish: We started with an appetizer platter with pork rinds, country corn timbal, chorizo, yucca croquets, marinated cheese, fish sticks and fried plantains. For my entree I ordered the corvina (sea bass) in garlic sauce, it was very good. Hubby got the special typical dish with roast pork, fried sweet plantains and a rice ball with chicken. Although we didn't think we could finish off a pitcher of sangria, by the end of the evening it was gone. I can't find my receipt but I think the whole meal with cover charge of $10, tax and tip was around $70.
Beirut: Lebanese food
Located near the Marriott Hotel, Beirut is a nice spot to have Midde Eastern food. We were seated on the outdoor patio. Service wasn't very friendly, it took awhile to get our server to come over and then they seemed to be a little overanxious to clear the plates. But the food is good and it's a nice atmosphere.
Favorite Dish: We ordered an appetizer sampler platter to share and a chicken shawarma sandwich that we split. The menu was only in Spanish but I recognized some of the items on the sampler platter, the falafel, hummus, baba ganoush
El Trapiche: Panamanian diner
Ask anyone in Panama City where to try Panamanian food and most likely the answer will be El Trapiche. It's not fancy but the food is so reasonably priced, the service is jiffy quick and pleasant and the food is oh so tasty. There's outdoor seating but if the heat is making you wilt you can also eat in the air-conditioned dining room decorated to look like an old sugar mill, El Trapicherefers to a press used to extract juice from sugar cane.
We *loved* El Trapiche, we ate there three times, our first night, our second night when we tried unsuccessfully to find another place that served Panamanian food and Sunday for breakfast. Sunday breakfast was packed but they really know how to get people in and get them out.
Favorite Dish: I had the Ropa Vieja both nights for dinner and for breakfast I had a combinacion sandwich made with pork and chicken on a hojaldras (flour fritter). The prices are really cheap, the ropa vieja was around $5, the appetizer plate was only $2!!! The whole meal was under $20 all three times we ate there.
McDonald's: Giving the Colonel a run for his money
The man on the beach from Wisconsin said "I know it sounds crazy but you just have to try the fried chicken from McDonald's". Even crazier? We actually followed his advice and by golly it was darn good fried chicken!
Favorite Dish: I normally avoid McDonald's both at home and abroad unless nature calls and I can avail myself of their free bathrooms but if there is something unusual on the menu, like fried chicken, I can be persuaded to try it
Marina Marina Cafe Gourmet: Very fresh seafood, excellent beef, loved it!
This is an elegant, casual restaurant, with a Canadian-trained chef who specializes in making local food into a refined and delicious experience. Prices are low by US standards, and quality is like one would find in a upscale restaurant anywhere in the world. The location is comfortable as there are lots of parking. Luminous & clean. Moerately priced wine list.
Favorite Dish: I love the lamb shank in wine.... and the seafood is out of this world
- Food and Dining
- Romantic Travel and Honeymoons
Marina Marina Cafe Gourmet: Fresh Fresh seafood
What a lovely small restaurant! Everything sparkles, it is a gem in Panama City. The food can only be described in superlatives, fresh seafood, tender steaks. They have the most delicious home made desserts. We had a wonderful dinner at this restaurant in the Punta Pacifica area, at a very moderate cost.
Favorite Dish: Our favorite was the corvina wrapped in potato, the fish was moist and delicious. A big portion of fish, we did not leave the table hungry! Another good choice was the lamb shank in wine sauce, very tasty and perfectly cooked.
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