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Observations About The New Deli Baru in Boquete


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I know I'm going to get a lot of blow-back on this (which is fine), but I'm not finding a whole lot of joy in the new Deli Baru. There are an awfully lot of inconveniences and aggravations.

The road on which it is located is too narrow to comfortably accommodate two lanes of traffic, for starters. Secondly, if you go anytime around midday, the automobile and pedestrian traffic is horrendous because of the Buen Pastor school next door. Out of the six times I've gone and five times I've been directed to park in front, I've been blocked by a delivery truck three times. Even though there are two loading dock lanes, the big trucks apparently choose not to negotiate backing into them and leave customers to negotiate backing around them to get out. One day I went around 12 or 1 and had a hell of a time getting out because I was backing out and dodging school kids, school vehicles, AND delivery trucks.

At any given time there are a minimum of two stockers in each aisle, and I've experienced up to four. It's slow going. And they don't willfully get out of the way. I find locating items difficult, too. For example, I spent about ten minutes looking through the condiments for ketchup only to find that it was shelved with canned tomatoes, tomato sauce, etc. My purchases from the bakery have been mediocre at best. Fruits and vegetables can be bought cheaper at the mercado, although I admit that Deli Baru has stuff that the mercado doesn't. I haven't bought a lot of meat there, but what I have bought has been fine but nothing that cannot be bought elsewhere.

I keep hoping the next trip will be better, but right now I'm not impressed. I'll return--if less often--because of certain items not available elsewhere in Boquete--including a superior choice of dark chocolate. Otherwise, the biggest joy it has given me is that it's freed up some parking at Romero.

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I don't think your views should warrant any blow-back, facts are facts.

Boquete has a geological problem, it occupies the bottom of a valley that resembles a crater and there is just not enough real estate. Add the practice of only stocking when the store is open (to be able to keep an eye on workers) and shoppers are present, and the shopping experience is not going to be great.  The locals shop several times a week; their shopping trips are brief so they don't see the stockers as a problem plus they are hardly ever in a hurry.

Maybe when that Buena Vista mall at Volcancito road is finished it will alleviate some of the hassle?

 

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  • Admin_01 changed the title to Observations About The New Deli Baru in Boquete

I would like to mention that the road in front of Baru is a one way street travelling east from the school so there should not be two way traffic on that road.   I believe it is a matter of time before the Policia start ticketing.  I buy my produce at the green grocer across from Sr. Gyros, fresher and for the most part, not coming from farms using a lot of pesticides (like Cerro Punta farmers).  I think Mandarin has the best chicken in town so I tend to buy my dry goods there as well.  As for Romero's, the smell has always turned me off.

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1 hour ago, MarieElaine said:

I would like to mention that the road in front of Baru is a one way street travelling east from the school so there should not be two way traffic on that road.   I believe it is a matter of time before the Policia start ticketing. 

I don't believe that's correct, Marie. While it is illegal to turn left off Avenida Central onto the street when traveling north, I believe it is permitted to turn right when going south. That has been a two-way street (or at least used as a two-way street) for as long as I've been here. Someone please correct me if I'm wrong.

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I was very happy when Super Baru opened, and will continue to buy items there. But, must say, with the new competition, Romeros seems to have upped their game. In fact, I find their produce department superior to the selection at Baru. And yes, I love to shop for veggies with Sarah and her family's business across from Signor Gyros. They are good people and deserve our support.

Today I went to Super Baru (and I was in no rush), and walked out angry; not because of the parking (with which I have not yet had a problem). The service at the deli/meat counter was awful! I was the only customer initially, and had to call out to the counter man to get his attention. He was slicing a large amount of lunch meats and indicated he had no time to take my order. Well, ok, but where's the rest of the staff? Decided to do my other in-store shopping, and when I returned to the deli/meat counter, there was a family picking-up that large amount of lunch meat. Great, I thought. Now I can place my order. NO WAY. The man behind the counter ignored me and was cleaning-up/re-wrapping. By the way, there were at least two other men at the chicken/fish end of the counter, doing nothing. I signaled them, as by now there was another lady waiting for service. Ignored....maybe the chicken/fish men are not allowed to mingle with the meat men? Finally, a young guy (looked to be a teenager) took my order, and it took FOREVER. This young man needs to learn to use a slicer efficiently! Each slice was so slow, and I had ordered almost 2 pounds of 3 different lunch meats! A woman (manager) appeared behind the counter, and I asked her in Spanish if she was the Manager. Yes, and I told her that service was terrible today. She said something to the two guys; tossed her hair, and left.  The infinite slicing of turkey breast continued....

I have experienced some pretty bad service in Panama during almost 10 years, and expect I will continue to do so. It's my pet peeve, and I always put myself in "grin-and-bear-it" mode, but today was one of the worst examples...and this from a highly-touted new business in Boquete!

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At Romero it seems the guys who dispense fish at the end of the meat counter are not allowed to come down to the meat end, even if there is only one customer and nobody at the meat end.  Maybe there is a division of labor behind meat counters in Panama that workers dare not cross.

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1 hour ago, Louise said:

Great, I thought. Now I can place my order. NO WAY. The man behind the counter ignored me and was cleaning-up/re-wrapping. By the way, there were at least two other men at the chicken/fish end of the counter, doing nothing. I signaled them, as by now there was another lady waiting for service. Ignored....maybe the chicken/fish men are not allowed to mingle with the meat men?

The fresh meat section and the deli section are two different departments with different workers even though they are adjacent to each other in most grocery stores. Both departments have individual customer ticket servers. It's the same in Romero and Super Baru in David. At Rey they're separated by the bakery.

DIspensadores-de-turno-en-caracol-1.jpg.95b3b35355c8118d4b0d9ad216640e8a.jpg    original_organizador_de_turnos_con_dispenzador_de_papel.JPG.35e223f30352dc9020ad79726de0969b.JPG

 

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On 7/21/2017 at 0:53 PM, Bonnie said:

I don't believe that's correct, Marie. While it is illegal to turn left off Avenida Central onto the street when traveling north, I believe it is permitted to turn right when going south. That has been a two-way street (or at least used as a two-way street) for as long as I've been here. Someone please correct me if I'm wrong.

So those travelling north have to turn around or turn left at a street that allows left turns and come back.  Thanks for the correction.

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19 hours ago, JohnF13 said:

It is probably a health concern issue.

 

I know for a fact that "prepared" foods and "raw" foods must be kept in separate coolers here in Panama.  This was the reason that butcher closed down at Plaza San Francisco a couple of years back, the health department required them to purchased a second cooler to separate their meats which they chose not to.

 

John,

 

As for the handling, there could very well be additional requirements since coming into contact with prepared foods is safe whereas it isn't for meats such as raw chicken.

 

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1 hour ago, MarieElaine said:

So those travelling north have to turn around or turn left at a street that allows left turns and come back.  Thanks for the correction.

Don't thank me; thank Keith. He was the one who pointed out in an earlier post that the arrows painted on the road prohibit a left turn going north. That makes it very hard on people coming from the south of town. Of course, as you point out, most people either don't know about the prohibition (not being used to street directions being painted on the street) or simply ignore it. The police don't seem to have enforced it to date.

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JimAndNena, you are correct. Calle 4a Sur is a one-way street. The problem is that drivers don't seem to pay attention to the white arrows painted on the ground at each intersection. Yesterday morning, close to noon, as we left Super Baru and we reached Avenida Central, some dimwit gringo turned left from Avenida Central onto Calle 4a Sur cutting in front of us, in spite of my hand waving and signaling "No" that this was a one-way street. I think that the white arrows must've been painted in Spanish and he didn't understand.

Until we all start respecting the signals and traffic rules, nothing is going to improve regarding vehicular accidents.

 

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1 hour ago, Panama Bill said:

JimAndNena, you are correct. Calle 4a Sur is a one-way street. The problem is that drivers don't seem to pay attention to the white arrows painted on the ground at each intersection. Yesterday morning, close to noon, as we left Super Baru and we reached Avenida Central, some dimwit gringo turned left from Avenida Central onto Calle 4a Sur cutting in front of us, in spite of my hand waving and signaling "No" that this was a one-way street. I think that the white arrows must've been painted in Spanish and he didn't understand.

Until we all start respecting the signals and traffic rules, nothing is going to improve regarding vehicular accidents.

 

Spanish arrows!  OMG, I spit my coffee reading that one!

The system is really simple, if you see arrows, choose one and follow it. It ain't rocket surgery.

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On 7/22/2017 at 3:23 PM, Keith Woolford said:

The fresh meat section and the deli section are two different departments with different workers even though they are adjacent to each other in most grocery stores. Both departments have individual customer ticket servers. It's the same in Romero and Super Baru in David. At Rey they're separated by the bakery.

Mea culpa, I was wrong on the customer ticket dispensers. Noticed today that there are actually three of them, not two ..and they're in English.

Seems like there is one for Deli, one for Chicken, and the other for Beef, Pork, and Fish 

2013-10-21-freefly2.jpg.3c54df610c3ffe47bd6b584a3e961e6f.jpg

 

 

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5 hours ago, JimAndNena said:

Spanish arrows!  OMG, I spit my coffee reading that one!

The system is really simple, if you see arrows, choose one and follow it. It ain't rocket surgery.

 

 

6 hours ago, Panama Bill said:

JimAndNena, you are correct. Calle 4a Sur is a one-way street. The problem is that drivers don't seem to pay attention to the white arrows painted on the ground at each intersection. Yesterday morning, close to noon, as we left Super Baru and we reached Avenida Central, some dimwit gringo turned left from Avenida Central onto Calle 4a Sur cutting in front of us, in spite of my hand waving and signaling "No" that this was a one-way street. I think that the white arrows must've been painted in Spanish and he didn't understand.

Until we all start respecting the signals and traffic rules, nothing is going to improve regarding vehicular accidents.

 

As Keith has pointed out in a sister forum topic, Calle 4A is a 2-way street between Av. de los Fundadores and Av. Centenario where Super Baru is located. There is a 'right turn allowed' arrow marked on the pavement in the southbound lane of Av. de los Fundadores in front of the Park, and there is a stop sign at the west end of the street. Parking for Super Baru is also angled for cars coming from the east. I think in this case the map is wrong.

image.png

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OK, I had to contact some family to get their view, here is what I learned. Calle 4a between Av. Central y Centenario is two way. Leaving Baru toward the park one can go straight or turn right but no left turn toward Los Cabezos. 

Traffic either way on Av. Central may not make a left turn at Calle 4a as Keith noted.

They also said it would all soon be a moot point as the water project is about to tear up Central to install sewer lines. No idea on how long that was going to take.

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6 hours ago, Keith Woolford said:

Sure seems like it, Bonnie. There's now been international confirmation.

And from a life-long resident of Boquete from before the time of arrows painted at the street corners.  He was also doubtful about a new Panamonte bridge.

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2 hours ago, Penny said:

Why is Jim always on Keith's case????? It's getting old.

Rhetorical question?  "Many members are complaining" was how it was explained to me.

I can wait for others to provide an explanation.  Or you could provide one, Penny?  The admins have cautioned me yet again about how valuable Keith is to the activity count here on CL. Apparently some of my replies have already been blocked.  Or we looking at a rebirth of boquete.org here?

Keith provides traffic to CL, pretty much non-stop.  Much of it is irrelevant to Boquete or even Chiriqui.  But it is activity so that's good.

I was invited to join CL, by the admins. I apologize for being such a disappointment.

(The odds on anyone seeing this post are slim.)

jim

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The administrators of CL believe your attitude is better suited to some other forum. We don't favor conflict management on this website and suggest (like several members) that your postings are not wanted here.

Owner and administrator of Chiriqui.Life

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4 hours ago, Marcelyn said:

The administrators of CL believe your attitude is better suited to some other forum. We don't favor conflict management on this website and suggest (like several members) that your postings are not wanted here.

Owner and administrator of Chiriqui.Life

I second that!

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