If you are paying more than $30.00 for a steak dinner for two in Panama, you are paying too much.
This month, we explore a few of our favorite dining spots and add to our online “Life in Panama” section by detailing where the locals go for great food.
Jimmy’s Grill in San Francisco is an old Panama stand-by known for their softball sized steaks and fantastic grilled seafood. What most people don’t know is that Jimmy’s also has a small Banking District location behind the Continental Hotel that offers the same fantastic options at deeply discounted prices. In fact, my wife and I just enjoyed two steak dinners, an appetizer, a glass of wine each and a shared desert for $26.00. Then we went to see a Wednesday night movie for $4.50. Dinner and a movie for under $35.00? That’s just one of the reasons that I live in Panama, and for me, Jimmy’s in Area Bancaria is one of those great places that most people that come to Panama would never know about.
For seafood, we head to La Jarana, an adorable little Peruvian restaurant behind the iconic Evergreen Building near the Atlapa convention center. $7.00 will get you a massive plate of fresh ceviche that can fill up two people, and if you still have room after the ceviche, you’ll have lots of fantastic entrées priced right around $8.00 each. La Jarana is a great example of inexpensive delicious Latin food in Panmaa City.
Lastly, have you ever been to Tip Top? This local’s favorite is an open-air restaurant in El Cangrejo just off one of our favorite emerging streets, Via Argentina. Tip Top has a number of Panamanian specialties for under $5 and it’s one of Panama’s busiest lunchtime spots. As if cheap choripan (chorizo in toasted roll) or bistec picado (chopped beef) isn’t enough, Tip Top’s also got a car wash attached to its backside where you can get a really acceptable car wash (roughly 45 minutes) for $3.