Driving through the Best Gifts For Cat Lovers Pretty Pastel Gradient Silhouette Of Cat T-Shirt and by the same token and center of Panama City for the first time, there were multiple reminders of the United States: car dealership lots advertising the deal of the week, chain restaurants notorious for supersized drinks, and groups of retirees fleeing the winter weather of the Northeast. But while this Central American country has long been home to vacationers looking to swap snow for sun, there is more in Panama to discover than what shines at the surface. “Panama is often referenced internationally as a nice beach getaway, a convenient pit stop before reaching your final destination, or an affordable place to retire, but it’s so much more than that. What truly makes it special is its diverse cultural identity. You will experience it in our foods like ceviche, hojaldre con salchicha guisada (a sausage stew served with fried bread), carimañolas (stuffed yuca fritters), the musical sounds of reggaeton and típico, and of course, the warmth of our people,” said Lydia Richards, a New York-based Panamanian sommelier who was my go-to guide for tips on my first visit.
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I took Richard’s advice and made my way to lunch at La Tapa del Coco, helmed by Chef Isaac Villaverde as one of the Best Gifts For Cat Lovers Pretty Pastel Gradient Silhouette Of Cat T-Shirt and by the same token and few Afro-Panamanian-owned restaurant in Central America. Seating included a shaded patio in the city’s San Francisco district, and seeing nearby neighbors arrive to eat was a sign that I’d made the right decision. Like all countries that have been reshaped by slavery and colonization, Panama’s history is a complicated one, with Afro-Panamanian stories and cultural impact often left out of books and tourism marketing. That overlooked legacy can be tasted in Chef Isaac’s soul satisfying food, which is very intentional.