Panama Dining Room
Modern Australian
  • Level 3,
    231 Smith St,
    Melbourne, VIC
  • (03) 9417 7663,
  • Dinner Sun-Thu 6pm-9pm

    Fri-Sat 6pm-10pm

Panama Dining Room

There's much to do at Panama Dining Room, starting with the three-flight workout required to reach a cavernous warehouse space with huge arched windows. Then there's a pool table, cocktails, occasional DJs, and a menu by chef Ayhan Erkoc (late of Celsius in Adelaide) with intricate, interesting food that defies the expectations created by the well-worn retro furniture. Pickles and dates accompany a superb chicken liver parfait, and shellfish oil and peach frame gooey burrata. Oysters come with finger lime, fried school prawns with fermented chilli mayo, while full-flavoured ox tongue shares a plate with radishes and snow peas. Most of the interest comes from the small dishes, though the ravenous will appreciate larger plates, such as slow-roasted lamb shoulder built for two. The drinks list is well-priced, with a good range of beer and cider, while service, though not particularly well-informed, keeps it cool and collected.

You might also like:

Italian renaissance

Carlton, the Melbourne suburb that brought Italian cuisine a...

Atlas Dining, Melbourne review

Atlas Dining transports diners to a new culinary destination...

At a glance

  • Wine:
  • One glass
  • Price:
  • E $4-$21

    M $32-$39

    D $16

  • Feature:
  • Licensed
    Wheelchair Access
    Impressive Wine List
  • Cards:
  • American Express
  • Bookings:
  • Bookings recommended
  • Chef:
  • Ayhan Erkoc



Hobart, TAS
Smolt is the Volvo of Hobart restaurants: always reliable, without making a fuss. Secure ...

Bar Lourinha

Melbourne, VIC
Turning 10 has added spring to Bar Lourinha's step. Not that this perennially crowded fav...


Brisbane, QLD
Esquire isn't a restaurant for everyone. Control freaks, for instance, won't like letting...

Da Noi

Melbourne, VIC
First-timers should know a couple of things about Da Noi. First, there's no menu. Second,...


Griffith, ACT
The grey-whiskered Ben Willis could pass for a maturing, but certainly not jaded, rock st...


Amaru is dressed to impress. A one-time shopfront turned into an intimate 34-seat restaur...


Adelaide, SA
Quietly, up a set of stairs in a dimly lit side-street, a revolution has been taking plac...

The Source

Berriedale, TAS
Artistic inspiration is never far away at The Source - from John Olsen's painting of the ...
get the latest news

Sign up to receive the latest food, travel and dining news direct from Gourmet Traveller headquarters.