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“tiny place next to a convenience market”
Review of La Panza

La Panza
Ranked #793 of 4,850 Restaurants in Portland
Price range: US$ 8 - US$ 18
Cuisines: Southwestern, Mexican
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Restaurant details
Dining options: Outdoor Seating, Reservations
Description: La Panza Cafe is owned by husband and wife (and native New Mexicans) Andy and Jessica Razatos. The food is traditional Northern New Mexican, which is a combination of Spanish, Native American and Mexican ingredients and cooking techniques, which have been practiced and refined for over 400 years. This family business hails from a long, successful history as Andy's father opened the acclaimed, and now famous, Plaza Cafe in Santa Fe in 1947. Andy worked there for most of his career until he and Jessica decided to bring their four children to Portland to spread the love of enchanted, Nuevo Mexicano cuisine. At La Panza (the belly), we believe that less is more. Our dishes are simple, New Mexican soul food. We present all our menu items exactly as we grew up eating them in New Mexico (with a few minor improvements that allow more people to experience them such as vegetarian and gluten free options.) Some distinctive elements of New Mexican food on our menu are the use of red and green chile, blue corn, sopaipillas, posole and stacked (rather than rolled) enchiladas. We are eager to accommodate any dietary requests and can make most of our dishes vegetarian and gluten free. We have improved our red and green chile recipes to be both gluten free and vegetarian by substituting flour with cornstarch and chicken stock with vegetable stock. About our chile: We use only New Mexican Hatch green and Chimayo red chile, which is grown in an area stretching north and south along the Rio Grande river. The soil and growing conditions in the Hatch Valley create a unique environment, which contributes to the distinctive flavor. The chile growing industry is extremely important to the economy of New Mexico and is a prominent part of New Mexican culture. It is the official state vegetable (though it is actually a fruit till harvest) and the official state question is "Red or Green?". We ship our chile directly from growers in New Mexico so the hotness and flavor vary by region and time of year.
Reviewed 30 July 2017

No pretenses at all Good food unusual New Mexican mostly Blue corn things, fresh chicken, some beer and tequila drinks, cooked right in front of you the place is so small

Thank hAAydon
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
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Reviews (29)
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2 - 6 of 29 reviews

Reviewed 25 July 2017

We are Colorado residents and visit New Mexico a couple times a year to get REAL New Mexican food..... and La Panza -NAILS IT- ! New Mexican cuisine represents a twist on Mexican food that uses authentic, fresh food.... hard to describe but delicious. Typical Americanized Mexican food is kind of a gloppy cheese and bean mish mash... New Mexican food avoids the "glop" and delivers food with distinct flavors and taste. With relatives in Portland, we will return to La Panza every chance we get..... Expand your palate and EAT HERE !

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Thank kyle s
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 20 June 2017

I went to this restaurant last week to check it out and I was not disappointed. It is at the intersection of Division and SE 26th Avenue. It is a very tiny space in a little strip mall like thing. About 5 or 6 tables. I was seated and studied the menu. I decided to order the Jamaican Cooler for the beverage and the Green Chile Cheeseburger with Avocado and Bacon. I had never had a Jamaican Cooler before and I must say it is wonderful and their Green Chile Burger was amazing and had the right amount of heat from the chiles and it was cooked perfectly. La Panza means "the belly" in English and this authentic New Mexican Cuisine is well suited for that. Open for Breakfast, Lunch, and Dinner.

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Thank Milestogo007
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 5 June 2017 via mobile

I used to live in Albuquerque so I was super excited to see a New Mexican food restaurant in Portland !

The owner was very nice and doing his best to get everything out quickly (it was busy). The food was delicious and prices were average.

The only complaint I have is that the restaurant isn't bigger because we had to sit outside and I personally like to dine inside.

Thank Tara R
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 24 May 2017

my friends say they love this place, i saw a bunch of people waiting to get in, yet we did not think much of the tastes, kinda bland and normal to our disappointment.

Thank rosar779
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC

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