For such a small town, Boquete offers up some damn good choices in the dining world, and I am here to offer you my personal reviews. Whether you are in the mood for international fare, typical Panamanian food, or an impressive gourmet meal, you can find all Boquete eats here. Two things to keep in mind is that the typical gratuity rate is 10% of the check and that tap water is safe to drink.
Choices for Boquete Eats
Restaurante Mango– Makes a tasty breakfast and has a cute outdoor patio. Dinners are always good and consistent with fresh ingredients, but pricey. Try the brick oven pizza. (closed as of 2016)
La Posada– This is my husbands favorite bar and pizza. Consider sitting at a table in the bar for faster service. Prices have risen tremendously.
Sugar & Spice– Specializes in homemade muffins and heavenly varieties of breads. Large selection of breakfast dishes, though for me they are too bland. Service is on point and the restaurant runs smoothly. Take home items available as well. Sugar & Spice is closed on Wednesday.
Fire Side Inn (George’s Grill)– This is a mixed bag restaurant. The food is interesting, but the herbs in my soup did not go well with the overall taste. It was very bitter. The daily fish specials are worthwhile and service is just okay. Bring a cushion as the hard seats get rough after a short time.
Paladar– Located inside the Hotel Valle del Rio Hotel, this took me by surprise. They feature a cooked to order pasta buffet on Wednesday nights for a decent price. Service was acceptable and the outdoor patio is the best in Boquete.
Casona del Cuzco– NOM! Famous for Pisco Sours. Try the Peruvian Chicken with yellow pepper!
El Alto– A decent breakfast and in a different part of town (San Francisco Plaza).
Morton’s Bakehouse– Tasty bagels and flavored cream cheeses, but the bagels are chewy. Morton’s is usually a Tuesday morning market participant.
La Ceiba Bakery- Yummy and inexpensive Panamanian pastries and coffee.
El Oasis Restaurante– A gorgeous dining spot in the midst of amazing gardens in the heart of downtown Boquete. Their soups are the best in Boquete; try the Roasted Red Pepper or Cream of Corn. The Polenta with Grilled Veggies is an inexpensive, delicious, and filling dinner choice, as is the Stuffed Chicken.
El Sabroson– Wide variety of foods and affordable prices. Typical Panamanian fare that is worth trying.
La Brülerie at Finca Lerida– An awesome dining option. La Brülerie have fantastic views during the daytime, interesting birds to watch, a fabulous new remodel, and quality food with lovely presentations, but extremely slow service.
Sabor Escondido Restaurant- Located inside Valle Escondido. Lots of food and choices, but very slow service.
Mike’s Global Grill- Fun little sports bar with outdoor seating along the creek bank and often live entertainment. This is the place for singles of Boquete. Mike’s has better than average food, especially burgers, wings, pizzas, and salads. They also serve a pretty noteworthy breakfast.
Punto de Encuentro Cafe (Olga’s)– Huevos Rancheros for me, and the price is right! Pancakes and waffles are both on the menu as well. Olga knows no strangers and you will feel right at home.
El Parador– Lovely mountain views and inexpensive breakfasts, pressed sandwiches, and luscious smoothies. (I prefer mine with milk)
Cafe Duran– Good coffee but expensive specialty drinks. They do have a nice selection of sweets.
Panamonte Inn Hotel Restaurant– My favorite, hands down. The pumpkin soup or Beef Carpacchio are great starters and try Osso Buco for dinner. Choose a table in the bar, which features relaxed atmosphere and romantic fireplaces. Breakfast is delicious, no matter what you choose. Panamonte just celebrated its 100th year in operation. I have yet to have anything less than spectacular at Panamonte.
Big Daddy’s– New management has upped the ante on food quality, cleanliness, and friendliness of the staff. Mike, the owner and manager, is always around helping out. Colorful decor and fun atmosphere. Known for the best fish tacos in town.
La Casona Mexicana– Attentive service, yummy Chorizo Queso Dip, and flavorful Chicken Fajitas. The sauce they offer you complimentary pairs nicely with the queso dip.
Art Cafe– Romantic and fancy place to dine with friends or for a special occasion. I like their non-typical Beef Stroganoff and decadent desserts. Salads are huge and the lamb is ranked superior.
The Rock– Beautiful location and setting, yet incredibly overpriced. The Rock offers a variety of soups and a delicious chicken curry meal. Service is slow, but the wine list is extensive and they have a full bar.
The Ricos Little Italy Pizzeria- I have not eaten here, but have walked by and the smells from inside are mouthwatering.
Il Barolo– New Italian restaurant located in the loop that features Northern Italian cuisine and interesting Salmon Rolls for appetizer. I could have eaten them all! Try their daily pasta specials and enjoy a dip in their pool if you would like.
Toco Madera Restaurant– Nice little spot away from the busy downtown with a cute patio. Good drinks! They were out of many items when we dined there, but the food we had was really delectable.
Il Pianista– A little hard to find but a quaint location and relaxed ambiance. Service is good, and I recommend the Vegetable Lasagna or Canneloni and pizza. This is an exceptional place for a special occasion with fine wine and beer choices as well.
Restaurante Raices de la Casa del Risco- Located inside Los Molinas, this is the place for Friday evening happy hour, featuring live music and very inexpensive appetizers. Ceviche and Chicken Quesadillas are both spectacular and only $5.90 each.
Central Park– The perfect choice for $2.50-$3.50 Panamanian meals or to just people watch. Meal includes choice of meat, rice, beans, and a scoop of macaroni salad.
Fresas Mary– Located near Volacancito, this is a popular choice for fruit sherbets and smoothies. I like the Strawberries and Cream.
Baru Restaurant and Bar– Right in the heart of town with big screen TV’s outside and free WIFI, this is a busy place to be and a popular place to meet up. The food is tasty, above average, and they have gourmet burgers.
Restaurante Bistro– Extremely good service, affordable prices, and a perfect Chicken Quesadilla. (this restaurant is closed and has changed hands in 2016)
I am quite impressed with the local Boquete eats and new restaurants are opening up often. What is your favorite eatery in Boquete and did it make my list? I would love to hear from you.