A Delightful Meal in Lisbon

by | Jul 17, 2013 | Restaurant Overviews, Travel

Troy, my husband and past president of the Plymouth Foothill Rotary, and I thought the 104th Rotary International Convention in Lisbon, Portugal was an opportunity not to be missed. His love affair with the Portuguese culture and my heritage confirmed our desires to head out.  After our all night journey, we worked up quite an appetite! We set out by foot from the apartment where we were staying in the Chiado district of Lisbon, Portugal. We walked past a restaurant with specials on their chalkboard menu … Little did we know the fine food we were going to experience.

BCN @ Lisbon Portugal

The chalkboard at BCN – Beber & Comer by Novamesa – is what drew us in. One side was in English, the other in Portuguese. What appealed to me on the board is actually what Troy ordered – the grilled Mackerel. Our waiter was excellent! Raised in Toronto, his English was much appreciated as he explained the details of the dishes.

Inside BCN

We started with “Para comecar …” (to start) and chose a traditional Portuguese appetizer – Batata brava. These fried potato squares were covered with a delicious cream and paprika. We also ordered Chamucas de frango ou Legumes – inspired by the cuisine of India, a fried pocket adequately curried. This was served with a Thai style sweet and hot dipping sauce.

Batata brava (i.e. fried potato squares)

Chamucas de frango ou Legumes

Our next dishes were chosen from “Do Mar…” (sea) I chose another traditional dish – Brandade de bacalhau gratindo.  Bacalhau is the Portuguese word for cod and in a culinary context – dried and salted cod. The was cod blended with mashed potatoes and cheese, baked to perfection with a crispy top! The picture of the partially eaten dish does not do it justice. This was accompanied with greens, with a very light dressing. Troy ordered Cavala grelhada com tagliatelle de legumes e crisp de cebola – grilled Mackerel on a bed of lettuce. Some of the dishes were served on a dark piece of slate, providing a contrast, which accented the food.

Brandade de bacalhau gratindo

Cavala grelhada com tagliatelle de legumes e crisp de cebola

We hadn’t planned on dessert, but the other foods were so delicious I had to order something. From the “Sobremesas” (desserts), our server recommended one of the baked goods as opposed to Gelado do dia. Knowledgeable advice! We chose Cheese cake Novamesa – inspired by the sister restaurant. Not being that fond of cheese cake, I ordered it anyway, knowing that Troy enjoys it. This cheese cake was deliciously dense, the crust thick, but not hardened. The berries on top added color and sweetness. I was not disappointed.

Sobremesas – Cheese cake Novames

The first restaurant we experienced in Lisbon was a delight. We did not have the opportunity to return … so many restaurants, so little time. This restaurant was a wonderful introduction to Portugal’s delicious foods, which inspired me to eat as much as I could!

Check tray… What to do with old keyboards!

Should you have the opportunity to eat a Portuguese meal, do it! If it’s in Portugal, all the better.

Tchauzinho! Susie