With a gastronomy influenced by multiple cultures for being a transit country, Panama is a country where you can find many interesting restaurants, especially in its cosmopolitan capital, Panama City.
Here we show you some recommendations that cover a wide range, from the most popular inns to the avant-garde options where Panamanian cuisine is reinvented with a little fusion with other gastronomy.
Located opposite the Marriott Hotel, in the heart of Panama City's banking district, Beirut is considered the best Lebanese and Indian cuisine restaurant.
El Trapiche is one of the classic restaurants of the capital, with more than 30 years of operation. It is one of the best places to taste the traditional Panamanian food, at a good price and in a pleasant atmosphere, especially in its original restaurant, in the neighborhood of El Cangrejo.
Las Tinajas is a traditional Panamanian food restaurant where you can enjoy a dinner with folkloric show.
Every week, from Tuesday to Saturday, at 9:00 pm, the scene of the restaurant is invaded by dirty diablicos, empolleradas, montunos that dance to the sound of typical Panamanian music songs performed by live musicians.
A really surprising place this René Café, especially since it does not have a menu from which to choose the food, but a unique menu, which changes every day, composed of several dishes of small portions.
The location of this restaurant is impressive, in the middle of Amador's Causeway, with the skyscrapers of Panama City and the sea as a backdrop. It is a good option for lunch when visiting the Frank Gehry Road or the nearby Biomuseum, although in my opinion the view is much prettier at dusk or at night.
This typical Panamanian restaurant is located on the top floor of the Seafood Market. It is not a fancy restaurant nor will you see tourists in it, but you can be sure of one thing: its products are fresh and of the best quality, since they come from the market itself.
Pomodoro / The Wine Bar
Swiss chef Willy Diggelmann, who has been living in Panama for decades, decided to open an Italian restaurant in El Cangrejo in 1995, which quickly became one of the most popular in the city. A few years later, he expanded the restaurant by creating another wing, which he called The Wine Bar, with the same cuisine of Pomodoro, but completely focused on wine culture.
Surely a pizzeria is not the first thing that comes to mind if you mention a Greek restaurant, but that's precisely the specialty of Athen's Pizza. At Athen's they prefer to order the Ladopsomo, a curious dish that everyone in Panama would think is a typical Greek dish because of its enormous popularity in the isthmus.
A foreigner might find it funny to receive the name of a Cantonese restaurant as a Panamanian food recommendation. However, with a significant population of Cantonese immigrants and their descendants since at least the time of canal construction, Panamanians are very accustomed to Cantonese food and it is normal to find restaurants that serve "dim sum" with long lines weekends.
This type of banquet, based on small pieces of food, generally in the form of dumplings filled with pork, seafood and / or vegetables, is incredibly popular with Panamanians, who call it a Chinese breakfast, although it would be more appropriate to call it Cantonese brunch.
Felipe Milanés is a Panamanian chef who, after traveling around the world and working in different cuisines, finally decided to return to Panama to promote a new gastronomy with purely Panamanian ingredients. His project called him Tomillo and is located in the attractive Old Town.
It is a restaurant that defines the trend of new forms of Panamanian cuisine.