Photo by Luis Manuel Botello

Panamanian Chef Yadira Stamp will close her restaurant on Dec. 22. Esencias Panameñas Restaurant and Catering has operated at 3322 Georgia Ave NW. for four years. Stamp is hoping to relocate elsewhere in the city and says her catering operation will continue without change. 

The cozy Latin charmer drew in customers with signature dishes like stuffed yucca balls with a tamarind dipping sauce and oxtail over coconut pigeon peas and rice. Drinks featured Panama’s signature spirit seco herrerano. Brunch was a special treat because the menu featured many fried options.

Stamp came to the U.S. from Panama in 1978 and worked as an executive business consultant and senior business analyst before deciding on a career change and enrolling in culinary school. 

Stamp declined to provide a reason for the closure. 

Esencias Panameñas; 3322 Georgia Ave. NW; (202) 688-7250; esenciaspanamenas.com