Tuesday, April 12, 2011


Portugal, Part V: Lisbon's oldest restaurant, opened in 1784, is also the city's most opulent, reminiscent of a palace room.

This Michelin-starred outlet serves Portuguese cuisine that radiates creativity.

An amuse bouche of olives, but like none we've ever seen before. One was a "molecular cuisine" sort that burst open for a liquid explosion on our tongues, while the other was a lightly battered variety similar to fluffy tempura.

Celery cream with smoked ham & truffle oil. First impression: if the complimentary starters were this unabashedly decadent, we could scarcely imagine how the main courses would turn out.

Marinated mackerel in roasted pepper gel & oregano. Not foul or fishy at all, this boasted a briny freshness that put us in the perfect mood for seafood.

"The Garden of the Hen That Laid Golden Eggs." A long-winded name for an elaborate egg recipe with earthy aromas emanating from a complex combo of mushrooms & veggies.

Fruits, veggies, edible flowers, leaves, mushrooms & sprouts _ roasted, fried, sauteed & raw, with Azeitao cheese whey, hazelnut oil & Iberian ham. It's difficult to describe how this tasted, since its complicated flavors evolved miraculously with every bite.

Pig trotters with coriander gelatin & bread from Alentejo. Mushy and boneless; virtually like eating baby food, but with a beguilingly intense porky flavor.

Cod fish Bras style. Essentially salted cod, with potatoes, veggies & Iberian ham. Moist, delicate, and captivatingly presented _ but unmemorable, taste-wise.

Roasted pigeon with Swiss chard, hazelnuts & cinnamon. Terrifically tender and flavorsome meat, but what made this a stupendous standout was the foie gras & black truffle "ferrero rocher" _ a brilliant creation that we'd happily eat all night.

Clams "Bulhao Pato" style. A hugely popular Portuguese recipe, cooked with garlic, white wine, olive oil & cilantro. Deceptively simple, indelibly delicious.

Steak with egg yolk & roasted lettuce heart. This impeccably prepared (impeccable!) medium-rare beef with a runny, creamy yolk left us sighing with satisfaction.

Another intriguingly named dish: "On the beach, on a fire" (visually, we could see why they named it so). Basically roasted red mullet & cuttlefish with squid ink migas & liver sauce. Each mouthful was a cauldron of savory oceanic flavors.

Carla Ferreira Unipessoal, Lda. Portuguese wines? Delectable.



  1. WOW, this looks really really posh and nice! Very classical too!

  2. Oh my lord, everything looks soooooooo yummy!

  3. WOW.
    *looks at the photos and dreams of the day she will (hopefully) get to go there and try it*

  4. michelle: yeah, we didn't manage to visit many restaurants in portugal, but this one was definitely our favorite :D
    baby sumo: both the setting and cuisine are pretty breathtaking! =)
    j: it's too bad we don't have something similar in kl, rite. the closest thing i can think of would be carcosa, but that's still not as impressive...

  5. Amazing! Seems that this meal really rocked your socks? :)

  6. tng: oh yeah, a meal to remember! if i ever return to lisbon, i'll certainly consider coming back to this restaurant =)

  7. i love the deco. It's so majestic and it would be perfect for a wedding! My wedding! lol

  8. Eiling: heheh, ya, it's grand and gorgeous! The setting should really be preserved for historical reasons :D