Sunday night dinner and a drink: Panarotti’s and Europa (Airport Junction Mall)

I think I have decided that my favourite day to go out for takeout/dinner is Sunday night. The malls are always so quiet and the restaurants are fairly empty which means a better chance of decent service.

I was treated to a takeout dinner and I decided to try a pasta meal at Panarottis and while waiting for the order, we had a few drinks at Europa Cafe.

I have had a pizza once before at Panarottis and was sorely disappointed with it. I couldn’t put my finger on it but it was not good at all. However I may be an exception because I have met people who love them. So this time I decided to sample the pasta on their menu. Their main focus is pizza and pasta. I really wanted to try their Cannelloni pasta because I have never seen it on a menu in any of the pasta restaurants here. I also wanted to see if theirs is as good as mine, ha!

We ordered spinach and ricotta cannelloni, Tequila flamed fettuccine pasta and bruschetta with a spicy salsa topping.

(Left to right) Bruschetta, Canelloni pasta, Tequila flamed fettuccine and extra garlic, cheese and chillies in the center.

I loved the tequila flamed pasta, and at 67 pula the portion was quite satisfactory. If I had ordered it alone, I would not have been able to finish it. It comes with chillies on the menu but we opted to remove them when ordering. This pasta was really good! And even after splitting it with my friend, I still had enough left over for one more meal. According to the description on the menu, it is:

Tequila-flamed peppers, chillies and oven-roasted chicken in a creamy tomato and spinach sauce.

That sauce was the! Perfectly balanced, not too much cream and not too much tomato. I wasn’t so crazy about the canelloni though. At the same price as the tequila flamed pasta, it was much less quantity wise and had waaaay too much cheese for my liking. It was covered with a blend of mozzarella, cheddar and parmesan cheese. I felt extremely unhealthy when stuffing it down my throat. I wish they had a version on the menu with a meat based stuffing. So until then, I’ll jus make them at home. The bruschetta was lovely! I enjoyed the spicy salsa and it complimented the pasta dishes very well. I need to figure out how to make that on my own as well. According to the menu it is:

Toasted and drizzled with garlic olive oil, topped with tomato and basil salsa with a hint of chilli.

On the to-do list!

We discovered some obscenely cheap but strong cocktails at Europa while waiting for our Panarottis order. They have a selection of about 8 cocktails on their menu and most are between 30 and 40 pula. I had a mixed berry and mint muddle cocktail while my friend had a Mojito. Despite what looks like an obscene amount of ice in the glass when you get it, the cocktail still packs a punch. It is rare to find cocktails in restaurants or pubs at that price that still deliver in terms of alcohol content (most just taste like juice). My cocktail was slightly bitter and tasted more like a red coloured mojito so I kindly asked the bar man to add some berry or strawberry syrup to temper the bitterness of the crushed mint and they did so at no extra cost! Lucky me!

Europa interior
Europa interior
Mixed berry and mint muddle and Mojito cocktails.
My cocktail after adding the berry syrup.

Check out the menu here if you want to see what else they offer. Since the Rand and Pula are basically 1:1, the pricing is exactly the same here in Botswana. They also serve pasta, pizza, burgers, salads, breakfast meals and coffee. Next time I go, I’ll try sample a meal.


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