Having had one very good and one very average experience on our last trip to Italy myself and my wife decided to give Panama Beach another go. Of the beach front restaurants in Porto Gribaldi it is by far the most upmarket looking and has a relaxing atmosphere. The repeat experience was very dissapointing. First the staff are very rude (vilano in Italian), seem to think they are more important than the customer and are pretentious. On one occassion we popped in for a coffee and the waiter dissappeared talking to a customer without returning with our change (until my wife reminded him). When we had lunch our pasta dish took over 45 minutes to arrive and when it did I had about 8 clams (vongole) in my pasta. It was basically a plate of spagetti and oil with a sporadic vongole. The dish was lacking in flavour. When I mentioned this to the waiter he pointed out my wife had more vongole (well about 10). Having eaten this dish all over the adriatic and mediterranean coast in Italy both dishes were severely lacking in flavour and shell fish! On the plus the wine was good and good value, but we had finished our mezzo litre well before our food arrived.
Having been very dissapointed with the meal, we then had to wait 30 minutes from asking for the bill until it arrived. The staff could see how discontent we were and simply did not care. Other tables also had to wait a long time for their food and some of the faces indicated that they also were not happy. So what is the problem. It is one of attitude. The owner does not want to listen to customers and is very above himself. It seems to me that he has created a beach/restaurant for his friends from Ferrara and does not really care about the other customers. The kitchen cannot cope with multiple tables and the chef does not seem overly competent. This is a real shame as if this place got its act together it could be a real stand out in the town.
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