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Panama's Top 5 Cheap Outdoor Restaurants

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Written by Matt   
Thursday, 08 January 2009 12:18
Panama Cheap Outdoor RestaurantsAmong the many great aspects of life in Panama are its warm climate and its nightlife/dining scene. While the latter wouldn't necessarily rival anything from New York or LA, sovaldi sale Panama's entertainment scene is among the best in Central America and not to mention, sovaldi sale significantly cheaper than comparables at home. Considering nightly temperatures in Panama are almost always perfect, doctor it's surprising that so few outdoor restaurants and bars exist, but those that do are packed regularly. Of course none of these places have websites. When cheap eats and perfect weather combine, it's hard not to have a good time anywhere in the world: think pig roasts, tailgates, festivals in college. Below is our list of Panama's best, cheapest outdoor restaurants. Most are best enjoyed in the evening when temperatures hover somewhere around paradise, but daytime too can be pleasant in these places if you score a table with shade and a decent breeze. Visitors don't come down to Panama in the winter to sit inside wannabe cool gathering spots: they come to experience something new and tropical, and the following five restaurants (in no particular order) usually guarantee that.

1. Kyukos: Located at the very end of the Amador Causeway, literally I don't think there's an establishment that sits further from the Causeway's entrance, is one of the best kept secrets in Panama dining and nightlife. Kyukos is one of the few restaurants on the Causeway that 1) is always full and b) frequented by locals. By avoiding the touristy vibe, Kyukos remains a magnate for friends meeting after work, lazy weekend afternooners, and just about any random visitor who has nothing better to do. Beers cost around $1.50, skewers of meats run $3, and entire platters of fried fish, seafood, and chicken vary from $6-$9. While service here is amusingly slow, there's no excuse not to chill out to the open sky, relax and admire the yachts parked out front.  Locals like to buy bottles or half bottles of liquor (vodka, rum, whiskey...etc) for discounted prices, which are sold by the wait staff out of random recycled bottles with the mixer of your choice.

Directions: Follow the Causeway road all the way out to the last island, bearing to the left where all the yachts are stationed. Kyukos is tucked back in a corner, marked by large umbrellas, a ramp for unloading boats, and a cabana-like bar area.  

2. Pescadito: Once the location of the famous Senor Frogs, this banking district hotspot is the place to go for big sporting events, happy hours, and Saturday afternoons. Covered by a large thatched roof and comprised of cheap tables and far too many TVs, Pescadito offers inexpensive buckets of beers ($8) and some great snack foods: fries, ceviches, salads, skewers...etc. Known as a real down home Panamanian bar, chances are you'll be one of the only foreigners around, which is what disturbingly makes this place so wonderful. The parking area is located in the restaurant, meaning cars drive through the tables to find a space, which is just hilarious.

Directions: Located on one-way street that leads past HSBC and eventually turns into Calle Uruguay. Make a left at the Four Points Sheraton (near Plaza New York) and continue about 3 blocks down.

3. La Marea: This is arguably the "fanciest" place on my list, but still, if you know how to order, shouldn't run you more than ten bucks a head. If you like ceviche, La Marea is a must. The feature of the menu is about ten different kinds of ceviches ranging from octopus to sea bass to shrimp, all with crazy combinations of juices and spices. Ceviches run about $5-$7 and are served with pita chips and toasted jumbo corn kernels. The ambiance of this place is decidedly Miami chic, but the prices are extremely reasonable and the service pretty sharp. Ordering mixed drinks means the waiter brings the bottle to your table and waits to stop on your cue.

Directions: Cheesily located in Multi Plaza Mall, Las Terrazas which is the name of the large terraced area also hosting Benihana (sucks), Ten Bistro (pretty good) and Segafredo (great and cool for school) is visible from Punta Pacifica: located on the second floor.
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4. Jap Jap: This is the most down home place on the list, where all the workers take off lunch for $2 roasted chickens. Sodas and juices hover around $0.60 and the majority of the menu is abot $3. While it can get a little noisy here from cars passing, the Jap Jap experience is one visitors to Panama love because it actually feels like you're in another country! Go figure! The menu is all displayed in photos above the cash register area, while busy men behind the chopping blocks dab sauces and chop bones like it's their own special meat party. A meal here shouldn't cost more than $5 and there's a carwash adjacent to the restaurant, which does great detailing for pennies.

Directions: In El Cangrejo, turn off Via Argentina at El Prado restaurant and travel 2 blocks until you reach Jap Jap on the corner ahead.

5. Grill 50: The new location of Grill 50 is a testament to its success: large, scenic, and always filled to the brim. Another go-to spot for local Panamanians after work or for birthday parties, this is a great economic dining option which invariably turns into a great economic partying option somewhere around ten or eleven o'clock. Domestic beers run around a buck, appetizers are like $3, and full entrees if you're feeling hungry are something like $8. Grill 50 is a great sporting bar too, with plenty of TVs and a good selection of international channels. The service can be slow, but what do you expect? This is Panama. The food is always fresh although a cross breeze like that can make almost anything taste great.

Directions: Located in San Francisco, on the street (I think it's called Via Porras) with Bodega de Mi Amiga liquor store. It's a few blocks from the Super 99 and it sits on a prominent corner, usually designated with tons of illegally parked SUVs sitting on the curb.

Image: Of course, nothing as cool as the image used for this article exists in Panama. It was found at standardhotels.com/upload/Miami_events_outdoor.jpg

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Hm...
written by Sarajon , January 08, 2009
This is useful for our upcoming trip to Panama City. We love to hang out at local spots and drink dollar sirvesa! Any others that you might have left out?
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Jimmy's
written by Lamer , January 09, 2009
I liked the food and the service at Jimmy's on Calle 50 across Atlapa Convention Center. The waiters look and act like real waiters. The food is great especially local fish and seafood. These run for maximum $ 12. Good Italian stuff on the menu too, for $8. A huge plate of mixed grilled meat (pork, chicken, beef and some kind of sausage) was $ 11. The place is always packed inside where the AC is, but I love to eat on the spacious terrace under the fans. The terrace is pretty noisy due to its location by the street, but it's a large place with a Spanish touch and the noise doesn't seem to bother anybody. There are mostly middle class locals and a few foreigners as well. I went there three times in a row...couldn't have enough of their fish.
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how about...
written by Ms. K , January 09, 2009
what about casablanca restaurant in casco vieho (sp?) it's on a plaza and really pretty and european feeling. beers aren't more than two dollars
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cheap, you said?
written by Lamer , January 10, 2009
You might want to add the cheapest and funniest place in Casco Viejo - don't ask me the name. It's held by a Chinese couple who both look as if they are still in communist China by the factory. They can fill you up for $2 including drinks and you get to socialize with the guards and the natives of Casco. It's in the "safe" zone, on San Francisco street or something like that. If you've never been to China, nor to the Balcans in communist times, you might skip this one and eat at Manolo's.
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pic
written by kay , March 24, 2009
Which restaurant is that in your initial pic - with the trees and umbrellas by the water?
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Kay,
written by Lina , March 26, 2009
that picture is the Standard Hotel in South Beach (Miami Beach, FL)
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