The organizers announced details of the activity at a press conference held at the Hard Rock Hotel, where they offered artisanal beers, very trendy lately, from both national and European microbreweries. In addition to its traditional Expo open to the public, new installments this year include the Gastro Pub, a space for fans of pints and pub fare, and a new version of the Wine Route, providing a guided tour of different varieties of wine, various dishes to sample, and a special room for wine tastings.
This year 13 national and foreign chefs have been invited to speak at the fair's Chefs Unplugged conference about the latest trends and techniques in gastronomy to students, cooking professionals, and amateurs with some knowledge of cuisine.
The conference will be held on August 29 and 30 from 9:00 am to 5:00 pm in Atlapa and participants will include chefs Antonio Bachour of St. Regis Hotel Bal Harbour, Miami; Virgilio Martínez, Central, Lima, Perú; Carlos García, Alto, Caracas, Venezuela; Kamila Seidler and Michelangelo Cestari of Gustu, La Paz, Bolivia; Makoto Okuwa, Makoto Restaurant, Miami; Raúl Vaquerizo, Universidad Interamericana de Panamá; Carlos Alba, Atelier in Amador Theater; Mario Castrellón, Maito, Panamá; José Olmedo Carles, Donde José, Panamá; Hernán Correa, Riesen Panamá; Alfonso de La Espriella, La Trona, Panamá and Luis Mendizábal, Cuatro, David, Panamá.
An additional feature of the festival is the Copa Panamá Gastronómica, an international competition among 14 teams of culinary students from cooking schools in Mexico, Guatemala, Costa Rica, Colombia, and Panama, represented by Chiriquí, Veraguas, and the capital.
Those who follow Panamá Gastronómica on social networks can engage in Brunch Star, an activity held in association with elbrunchblog.com by renowned blogger Ernesto Méndez, with a competition open to the public.
Finally, this year the event debuts the concept of Gastronomic Experiences R, in alliance with Bac Credomatic, which consists of three exclusive dinners offered by national and international chefs at a different restaurant each time.
The first dinner will be given on August 28 at 8 pm at Hard Rock Hotel's Soy restaurant, with a menu inspired by the concept of umami, or the fifth basic taste, and prepared by chefs Makoto Okuwa, Antonio Bachour, and Paul Carrillo.
The second dinner will be held at Mercao restaurant, where the renowned Panamanian chefs Francisco Castro and Luis Mendizábal will highlight the best of the national cuisine.
And finally, for the third dinner the Venezuelan chef Carlos García will present his best cooking skills at the restaurant Bon Vivant, where diners will also be able to enjoy the wines Viu Manent and Gran Oriol Serra.
Visit www.panamagastronomica.com for more information or to purchase your tickets through TicketPlus at the price of $7 dollars.