"It’s a little taste of the Southwest,” Arthur Gonzalez, the chef at Panxa, said. “We want people to be relaxed, feel like they’re coming to Grandma’s.
“It’s also a great date night spot.”
They celebrated their fourth anniversary last New Year’s Eve and have developed a reputation for tasty Latin cuisine combining gourmet touches with a comfort feeling.
Following his annual scouting trip, Gonzalez recently added several new items including an Agave Glazed Game hen dinner entree served with rosemary-corn and ancient grains; a Chick-A-Rones appetizer (fried chicken skins, salsa crude, paprika and lime) and for dessert, a Burnt Basque Cheesecake with pistachio crumble.
About the Food
Their fresh chips are legendary. They’re a little thicker than usual but are still delicate and crunchy. They are served with three sauces, including black bean, which comes out warm, a pleasant surprise.
The Chicken Mole has been a favorite from day one, according to Gonzalez.
“People come every single Sunday to have that," he said.
It’s a, dark chocolate mole, gentle poured over a tortilla containing chicken, black beans, brown rice, slaw crema pico, salsa topped with pickled onion and cilantro.
The colors are wonderful and the tastes are a delicious progression of sweetness from the chocolate mole, followed by the gradual increase in the heat from the spices. It’s more than I could finish at one sitting.
The small bite Ceviche is $6 on the bar menu and combines fresh, firm fish with crunchy nuts and Amarillo sauce.
Among the New Mexico favorites are Prawns, “Tamale” Dumplings with crab, corn and chipotle tomato cream and Chimayo Pozole, which comes in a choice of chicken, beef or pork.
Don’t miss the Green Chile Cornbread.
And for dessert, the chocolate bar also is not to be missed. Chocolate desserts can be too heavy and rich. This is the perfect amount of sweetness and rich chocolate taste.
Brunch is served on weekends and one of the specialties is Panxa’s take on eggs benedict, the Panxa Benedicto, with poached egg, polenta, ham and chorizo gravy.
By the Way
You have to love a place that has an after dinner drink called “Words Cannot Espresso,” which starts with Van Gogh espresso vodka.
They have a doggy menu including the Hungry Puppy Combo: sweet potato, brown rice and black beans.
“It sells,” Gonzalez said. “We want this to be a fun place."
Gonzalez said they have one of the largest collections of Mescal and Tequila in the city.
Craft cocktails are a staple as well.
The Margapeno Margarita features a Jalapeno-infused reposada tequila combined with cucumber, lime juice, agave syrup and instead of salt, a dusting of Tajin seasoning on the rim, making all the flavors more intense.
There’s a medium high level of heat, but it’s balanced with the coolness of the cucumber and smoothness of agave syrup.
Gonzales says The Lavender Old Fashioned is very popular. It’s Lavender infused Dickel Rye, Lavender Bitters, Angostura bitters and orange flame. Smooth, intense but not overpowering and a delicate aftertaste.
The wine list features a good mix of wines from California, New Mexico, Australia, Spain and Italy.
Important to Know
The Happy Hour is 3-7 p.m. seven days at week in the bar and 3 p.m. to close on Wednesday.
Panxa is at 3937 E. Broadway with parking on the street. The phone number is (562) 433-7999 and the website is https://panxacocina.com.
They open weekdays at 11 a.m. and 10 a.m. on weekends.