As I’m writing this we’ve just got home after attending the Panero Lounge‘s launch evening in Palmertson Road, Southsea, Portsmouth.
Recently, Helen was invited to their sister restaurant, The Cosy Club in Gunwharf Quays which you can read about here.
Traffic through Pompey at rush hour was pretty bad as usual, so we were all late bar one, Carlos. Good old Carlos, he saved us a table for the six of us by fighting everyone off – not really – and we didn’t arrive until gone 6.30, a good half hour late.
After greeting one another we popped down to the bar to order drinks. The place was buzzing.
The bar tenders all seemed to know their stuff pretty well, shaking the cocktails confidently and pouring them from great heights into glasses. At first I was drinking a nice Malbec but noticed that another bar tender had just poured out several of the same drink which looked rather nice. I asked another what it was and said I’d have one too please. It happened to be a Prosecco & passionfruit Martini. Well. it. was. D-ivine, with a capital D!
Our servers for the evening were Connor and Emily. Again, they were very friendly and confident, they knew what the dishes were and weren’t shy whatsoever, so a big thank you to them for looking after us.
Once we were all seated and each had a drink in front of us we said ‘bring on the grub’. Well, a little more politely than that, of course, we are English after all – oops, except Carlos.
We had one vegetarian with us and he ended up with three dishes to himself! Not for long though as we each had a nibble too. The hummus was lovely, smokey to taste and really quite yummy. We were given fresh slices of ciabatta to accompany the tapas.
The butternut squash with goats cheese was a firm favourite, the hummus too.
We all particularly liked the gyoza’s, both the vegetarian and meat one. They are Japanese dumplings with shiro miso dressing & chilli mayo. Chicken or pea & edamame. Those who had never tried squid before were surprised that they liked it.
Asked if we would like more tapas, we of course said yes. 9 small bowls weren’t really enough for 6 hungry people who had been working all day.
A little later we spied people eating desserts! I asked Emily about them and she said that we could now order from the menu but we’d have to pay. This was good because if you read Helen’s post on the Cosy Club launch you weren’t able to buy food and 3 small tapas and loads of free drinks didn’t go too well together, plus we were still a little peckish.
I ordered our desserts and they were all good. The churros came with both a chocolate and caramel sauce to dip them into.
Peter, Geoff and Rebecca all had sundaes, one of each, raspberry & berry compote; sticky toffee pieces & salted caramel; brownie pieces & chocolate sauce.
Helen had the sticky toffee pudding and Carlos the chocolate & orange torte.
The ambience was of course, very good – it was free don’t forget, everyone was rather happy – music played in the background and lots of chatter could be heard.
Inside, again like the Cosy Club, is full of pictures upon the walls, lots of parrot ones and portraits all adding colour and making it look ‘busy’. It certainly gave you something to look at if you were bored with the company you were keeping – I wasn’t I must add.
Apart from the tapas menu they also offer burgers – along with a favourite of mine, halloumi burger, yay – fried chicken, steak, chilli, sandwiches etc., They have a kids menu too. There’s loads to chose from.
More than likely we’ll make a return visit soon and have something different than tapas. I’ll keep you posted. Don’t forget that we are on Facebook, Instagram and Twitter.
Oh and by the way, if you’re wondering on the name ‘Panero’, it’s ‘a basket used in a bakery to place bread being taken out of the oven’ or ‘a small, round mat’ according to Wiktionary. Not quite sure why that name (they’re not a bakery) and not something to do with Portsmouth but there you go.
Ambience 9 – don’t forget it was free drinks and food
Living life, loving cake
Sorry not the place for us breakfast is supermarket food coffee not acceptable. Decor good but over priced boring food served up by casual dressed workers. Too flash.
Hi Steve. Sorry you didn’t enjoy your meal.
I returned recently to Panero Lounge (we had some vouchers to use up from the launch party) and our meals weren’t bad and the service was friendly and pretty good – I didn’t notice what the servers were wearing to be honest. On another occasion my son (who’s definitely not a foodie whatsoever and mainly eats because he needs to) also enjoyed his meal. However, the other half of LLLC went for breakfast and wasn’t impressed either, I don’t recall why. Bit of a ‘hit & miss’ kind of place maybe. I think perhaps restaurants that have such an extensive menu like this aren’t always the best places to visit if you’re looking for quality (we gave it a 7 in the review which we class as’average’.
Personally I don’t think the prices are bad, for example £9 for a burger & fries and £3.95 per tapa. Also, I’m not sure why you would say it’s ‘boring’ food. On looking at the menu again they have some very interesting sounding dishes.
Would I return again? I’ll not say never but it’s definitely wouldn’t be my first choice. If I was invited to join family and friends there then it’s quite a suitable place to visit. Because of the extensive menu it should keep everyone happy, there’s something for everyone and as I said, I don’t think it’s very expensive. In fact, I’ll be going out for a friend’s birthday meal soon and she and her friends are very fussy with their food and all like quite different things so Panero would be a good choice.
Thank you for reading our blog Steve and do let us know if there’s any places you love to eat at which we could review.