One Friday afternoon, long long before MuchBites, after a rather long day at work, my phone rang.
“Hey Wes, are you free for a quick coffee?”
“Of course.” I never turn down a coffee except in special circumstances; which is almost never.
“Meet me at Panela and Co, Calle Lopez de Hoyos, number 10 in 20 minutes….”
And so I got to know the restaurant that is the subject of this post.
As soon as I got there, I was taken aback by the interior. It had everything that I look for in a place to chill and relax. I especially loved the white exposed brick walls and exposed tubing on the ceiling. The dangling lamps over the counter enticingly shed light on the bagels, the quiches, the red velvet cupcakes and the other delectable things on offer.
However, on this occasion, I settled for a small latte (watching the pennies and all). As the coffee was being made and poured, my senses were telling me that this might not be your average let’s look good and charge a lot cafe. The coffee art that went with the coffee was that extra detail that made it all the more special. Now, I won’t profess to being a coffee connoisseur, but I tell you what, there was something about this coffee that I really relished. Had I found a keeper?
For a while after that, I frequented Panela and Co every so often; and once I had my first Bagel with cream cheese and sun-dried tomatoes, I was hooked! At every visit, a “hello Wesley” was that added touch of specialty. And on those days I woke up on the Bagel side of the bed, I knew exactly where I would be heading.
Passage of time…………………………………
I have grown to love this place because it’s not about “let’s have a cool looking place and charge high prices for it.” Rather, the cool looking place just goes hand in hand with products of fine quality. That is important. As MuchBites and Wesley, I’m anti cool looking places being used as an excuse to charge extortionate prices.
I put my theory to the test and I went for one of the priced Brunches from Panela and Co. At 19€ a pop, I was a bit apprehensive. I went on one Saturday around 15:30hrs and when I couldn’t eat anything else until 23:00hrs, I knew my money had been well spent – bear in mind I need to eat something every couple of hours to keep my spirits afloat. The place was heaving with happy brunchers. I started off with fresh fruit and natural yoghurt granola which came with some freshly squeezed orange juice and coffee. This was swiftly followed by a warm breakfast bagel served with bacon, avocado and cheddar cheese which was accompanied by some rather tasty potatoes.
As I chewed away, the flavours of the bacon and potatoes keenly reminded me of my first morning in Seattle, on that very day that I first fell in love with Seattle. The whole brunch experience was not one to be forgotten anytime soon. As you know, the premise for MuchBites is that if its good, I talk about it; if not, I keep quiet and forever hold my peace. Take from that what you may.
Of course, I could carry on writing about the soft focaccia breads, warm Belgian waffles and fresh salad wraps, but, why not try it out yourself. The lovely people at Panela and Co will be more than happy to welcome you at anytime.