Archive for May, 2008

Gourmet Pizza

Gourmet Pizza has been known in Panama over the past couple of years as an easy-going trendy, neighborhood pizza joint with consistently good, thin crust pizza, with fresh and unique toppings such as feta cheese or asparagus. Recently they have expanded their menu and added pastas. On offer are five types of pasta with your choice of four different sauces so that you can mix and match to your taste: Alfredo, Matrichana, Carbonera, and Bolognese; pasta ranges from $6.26. I tested the Matrichana with Tortellini last night and it was very tasty, brimming with vegetables and bacon to give it well rounded smoky flavor.

We often enjoy the savory antipasta appetizer $6, classic Greek salad with loads of feta cheese and black olives served with piping hot pita bread, 5.00.

Among our favorite pizzas are the Primavera (vegetarian with fresh asparagus) which is topped with fresh al dente vegetables; Greek feta cheese and black olives combine to create a uniquely flavored pizza, Hawaiian sweet pineapple and thinly sliced ham plus traditional Pepperoni and Cheese are old standbys, rich melt in your mouth Four Cheese pizza, all available plus many more choices in 3 sizes; priced from $5.75 (10”) to $19.00 (16”). For those watching their calorie counts they offer light pizza, and for those who are not, dessert pizzas such as honey and cinnamon or chocolaty nutella.

They also have a full bar with a simple wine list and if you don´t want to hang out they have take out and home delivery too.

When it is full the noise levels can be high but we love the pizza so much we can tune it out.
Located on Avenida Balboa next to Arrocha Pharmacy on the edge of Paitilla, and across from MultiCentro Mall. Within walking distance from the Plaza Paitilla Hotel, Decapolis Hotel, Sheraton Four Points hotels.
Tel:215-1000, www.goumetpizzapanama.com, Open 11 am till 12am.


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Last evening I went to the official opening of the 15,000 Watts Exposition. An exposition of Photographs, Paintings, and Displays by Arnoux, Cartooch, and Miguel Lombardo. I have never been to La Casona previously and enjoyed both the expo and the location. The exposition, while not large, was poignant. A display of photos and artwork by Arnoux, Cartooch and Lombardo which demonstrated the wasteful, offensive, outdated but still used, power line/engery systems which drape around Panama and many other countries.


My impression was that 15,000 Watts is aimed at increasing awareness of our “wired world” around us and perhaps to drive us to think more in terms of cleaning up existing energy systems and developing more efficient, visually appealing, options.

The event was catered by Ma Maison; their selection of wines and drinks was excellent.


Sponsored by Alliance Francaise Panama http://www.afpanama.org/, Sanofi Aventis http://www.sanofi-aventis.com/, Empresas Bern http://www.empresasbern.com/.

Running until June 25th. La Casona is open from 9:30 pm until the wee hours. Not open during the day.

La Casona Tel: 211-0740 http://www.enlacasona.com/
Plaza Herrera, Casco Viejo (a.k.a. Casco Antiguo & San Felipe)

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waiting for mail

Remember when you were a child and waiting for a package to arrive? And just when they told you it would arrive, it did? In Panama that doesn´t happen. You had better be prepared for a long wait.

With the Panama Postal Service (what is that word service doing in there?) some things never show up, and some take months to arrive. I once had a small Christmas box sent from Canada at an exorbitant cost and it arrived finally over 6 months later. Things are usually better if you use a mail service in Panama. I finally started and now use PakYa Panama.

I recently signed up for the services of Pakya Panama and have been very pleased. Although I have not ordered much from the US, nor anything large, everything arrived quickly and efficiently. When I walk into the office I am greeted by Melodye, an American and she helps with whatever questions I may have. They respond to my emails too.

There is no monthly charge, they charge by the pound ($2) and add customs charges.

When you start to use their service, you must let them know what is coming and get precise details from them on where and how to send the package or mail.

Ask for Melodye.

Here are their details:
PakYa Panama
Located close to MacDonalds on Transismica. Go straight through on Via Brasil up the hill across Transismica, it is the second gate (grey) on the right, office is at the back of the parking lot.
Edificio Islas Baleares #2,
Calle El Paical, Panama City
Tel: 236-1728, 6614-3632
Pakya Panama
web: http://www.pakyapanama.com
email: pty600@yahoo.com, info@pakyapanama.com

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Official opening of “15,000 Watts-Intelligent Energy” will be held in La Casona, Casco Viejo, May 29th, this Thursday at 7:30 pm. An exposition of Photographs, Paintings, and Displays by Arnoux, Cartooch, and Miguel Lombardo.

15,000 Watts Exposition

I recently had a “heads up” to this show from one of the artists and I have an inkling that it will be a unique, and interesting event. Artists were pushed to their limits to create works which are “off the wall” that will have the whole town talking. If you have an interest in the arts, plan to attend.

Sponsored by Alliance Francaise Panama http://www.afpanama.org/, Sanofi Aventis http://www.sanofi-aventis.com/, Empresas Bern http://www.empresasbern.com/.

Running May 29 to June 25th. La Casona is open from 9:30 pm until the wee hours.

La Casona Tel: 211-0740 http://www.enlacasona.com/
Plaza Herrera, Casco Viejo (a.k.a. Casco Antiguo & San Felipe)

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NEW YORK CITY BAGEL: Blueberry, cheese, poppyseed, wholegrain, or plain jane, which do you want with your salmon and cream cheese? The first time I had the New York Bagel Cafe´s lox and cream cheese I was so thrilled just to have found a place in Panama that knew how to make bagels and served them up with salmon! I went back again and again for the same lunch. Pure comfort food and sure to satisfy any big appetite.

NY City Bagels in Panama

I bought bags of bagels to take home and freeze, soon we had bagels every day… and then I stepped on the scales 🙂 Oops, Danger Zone!

Now, I enjoy one of Jon´s fresh bagels whenever I go to the Cafe for lunch or breakfast! My favorite these days are the blueberry bagels, because blueberry anything is almost impossible to find in Panama. They are almost sweet but not, perfect for a sandwich or as a treat with cream cheese; the dough is brimming with blueberries and the berry flavor runs through and through.

The minute you walk into the Cafe the sultry aroma of fresh baked bagels surrounds you and if you aren´t already hungry, you will be. New York Bagel Cafe has a full list of Bagel Sandwiches served with chips and pickles. Bagels sandwiches from $3.95 – $6.35; Salads from $4.25; Giant Chocolate Chip or Oatmeal Cookies, $.75, Espresso $.60, Cappuccino $1.50.

When the caffeine overdose is sending you into the atmosphere, they have a yummy, thirst quenching Italian Soda made from your choice of Italian Flavored Syrup $1.75.

Regulars hang out every day using it as their office because they have a free WIFI signal! It is a great place to meet new people, and check out the large bulletin board for interesting flyers and business cards. On any given day you will see groups at tables in business meetings or just enjoying a delicious steaming coffee and bagel. Coffee refills are free; House Coffee $1.50.

jon@newyorkbagelcafe.com (website coming soon, Jon promised)

Smell the fresh Bagels

Located just up the street from Via Argentina. Coming up from Via Espana, turn right at Taco Loco (across from Greenhouse Restaurant) and New York City Bagel is a few buildings up the hill on the right, across from the statue of Albert Einstein´s head; technically Einstein Plaza, Calle F.

Hours of operation are from:
Mon – Fri, 7am-8pm
Sat. 8am-8pm
Sun 8am-3pm

Phone number: 390-6051

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DOLCE CAFE is located as you go up Via Argentina in Panama City from Via Espana on the right side. The café is the creation of Angel Bakx, an honest to goodness pastry chef from Canada. Not too many of those around these areas eh? (I have to let my Canadian background hang out somewhere!) Dolce is a delightful little cafe, decorated with a cosy, relaxed ambiance; a quiet retreat away from the hustle and bustle of Via Argentina and Panama City.


Savor and linger with sweet and sensational homeade delights such as Butter Tarts, Flourless Chocolate Cake (meaning it is mostly luscious chocolate!), Lemon Pie, Strudel, Muffins, Giant Chocolate Chip Cookies, Peanut Butter Cookies.

Notice I have started with the sweet stuff first, now you know where my soft spot is. So before the dessert you can order homeade soup, chili, quiche, bratwurst and sauerkraut, chicken wings, salads…. and more. If you are craving an American style breakfast, in the mornings you can order up 2 eggs and bacon.

Angel´s food is created from scratch, and with a lot of love I´d say. That is a rarity nowadays. She even offers old-fashioned Root Beer Floats and Brownie Parfaits.

I tested Angel´s butter tarts and cherry crumble. Absolutely buttery-delicious made with real brown sugar. Mouth watering and rich. Reminded me of eating special treats in my grandmother´s kitchen, Nanny baked cookies and sweets almost every day. Everything she made too was from scratch.

Prices are reasonable: Coffee $1.50, Breakfast $3.50, Cookies and Butter Tarts $1.00 ea, Cakes $3.00 piece, Soup $3.25 bowl, Bratwurst on a Bun with Sauerkraut $5.00.

Dolce 3

Chef Angel smiled and told me “a lot of my pastries are made when the mood strikes the chef”, that can be translated to: menu varies from day to day.

Angel has an English book-exchange library where you can bring on your novels and trade for new ones. She will soon have a mailing list to let her fans know about special events. Drop in for tea (or coffee), she always greets her guests.

Dolce 2

Dolce Cafe, Via Argentina before Taco Loco. 8 am to 8 pm, Mon to Sat, Sun 8 am to 4 pm. Tel: 264-1216 angiebakx@yahoo.com

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