La Panetteria

For about four years back in high school and college, I was pescatarian (no meat, but fish is ok). Giving up meat wasn’t a big deal for me. I mean, I missed bacon, but tofu is pretty fun. Carbs, on the other hand, you’ll have to rip from my cold, dead hands. Actually, let’s be real. I’m not dying with the regret of leaving delicious uneaten carbs in my hands. Carbs are where it’s at. And among the best available carbs are fresh bakery goods. La Panetteria is an adorable new Barranco bakery that also offers sandwiches during the afternoon. Ivo and I decided to check it out.

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As a little lunch joint for a half-hour break, it’s perfect. I don’t think I could sit there and work for several hours the way I would in a cushy coffee shop, but the set up was clean and stylish. They had art from local artists on the walls, and all of it was for sale, which I love. Even the dishes were these beautiful ceramic pieces by a Peruvian artist. The lunch menu kept it simple: There were maybe six or seven sandwich options and some juices. The juices were pretty lackluster, especially compared to what Peru can offer, so we started a little skeptical. But when it came to their home game, La Panetteria delivered. The bread on those sandwiches… If they’d just said, “Sorry, we’re out of cheese and meat, but here’s the bread,” I probably would’ve eaten it, then just shrugged and paid the bill without complaint. They didn’t go nuts with the sandwich content, probably knowing how good their bread was: some cheese, some salami, some lettuce and tomato, some homemade mayo mix. That was it. Ivo and I both ended lunch full and happy.

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Maybe obviously though, the best part about going to La Panetteria for lunch was that we got to hit up the bakery afterward. So far, we’ve tired their pesto bread (awesome) and another of their savory breads, one with green olive slices in it (even better). We’ve also made a point of working our way through just about everything in their desserts selection. So far, their super chocolatey chocolate cookies and their crispy cinnamon pin wheels are my top two. I was even surprised by the plain oatmeal cookies, which were so good they beat out the regular chocolate chip cookies for me. I’ve got my eye on their brownies next. Basically, thanks to this place, whenever Ivo walks into the apartment with one of those brown paper bags now I have to resist the urge to dive tackle him for it.

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