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Monday, November 29, 2010

Monday Munchies: Panas Empanadas

Plaudits: None
Neighborhood: Dupont Circle

The Setup

Looking for some post-bar munchies, Official Friend of DCWD Power and I wandered over to one of the newest establishments: Panas Empanadas.

The Vibe

Panas is a basement shop on P Street and is thus both clean and funky. The furniture is orange plastic, the walls are lined with plastic grass, and the lighting is provided by hanging bulbs in glass fishbowls. Otherwise, seating is a bunch of limited two-tops around the service counter.

The Food

Unlike its competitor Julia's, Panas' empanadas are smaller and thus cheaper, and range the gamut in terms of fillings: ingredients as diverse as Brazilian-style shrimp, coconut, brie, artichoke hearts... the list goes on. On this trip I got the six piece combo (six empanadas, soda, and plantain chips). The six I got were:

Carne - beef, green olives, Spanish peppers, hard boiled eggs, onions, parsley
Chipotle steak - shredded sirloin steak, onions with chipotle sauce
Chicken pesto - grilled chicken, pesto sauce, fresh tomatoes, onions
CubaNovo - roasted pork rillette, onion, cilantro, lime, Grand Marnier
Smoked eggplant - smoked eggplant, roasted red peppers, mushrooms, tomatoes, mozzarella, onions, hardboiled eggs
Popeye - sauteed spinach and onions, golden raisins, cream, goat cheese.

Seeing as how my level of intoxication was fairly sizable, my observations on the empanadas are fairly stilted and not at all the sophisticated, discerning, incisive commentary readers of this blog might be used to (I hope anyway). But here's what I do have: flavor combinations are pretty right on. The bite size is perfect for post-bar snacking. The crisp on the empanadas is fantastic.

The Verdict

With the barflies coming in from the circle, this place should take off. And rightfully so.

Food Rating: *** 1/2
(out of 5)
Date Rating: 1.5 Hearts (out of 5)
Dress Code:
Bar Rating:
Calm to chatty
(out of 5) (less than $25 for two)

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