Casa Lisboa continues to remain consistent and seasonally attuned. I’ve never seen anyone wring as much flavour out of chicken, beef, and pork as Chef Jesus Pascual and his team do. Meticulous traditional cooking techniques turn the simplest of ingredients into well-executed, rustic-turned-modern Portuguese dishes. This year’s summer menu delivers an array of savoury, rich and earthy flavours.
The structure of the menu plays things relatively safe, presenting comforting starters such as the cozido ($88). Considered a classic family soup in Portugal, Chef Pascual explained that the ingredients are usually laid out in a large bowl. Here, he wraps minced chorizo, chicken, beef and pork together using a cabbage leaf for a more modern presentation. A small pitcher of clear broth was poured into our bowl without destroying the wrapped ingredients, and the first bites were savoury and smoky, enhancing the delicate soup.
For something innovative, I recommend trying the vegagna ($128) or bone marrow ($140) to start. The three-layered courgette lasagne is low in carbs, and the creamy filling is created using aubergine, tomato and courgette, providing sweet and smoky flavours that melted instantly in the mouth.
For a group of four, three mains will keep your hunger at bay. The guinea fowl cabidela ($295) was tender after being simmered for two hours and was draped across a bed of earthy risotto containing morel mushrooms. The balsamic glaze added a sweet touch.
For a robust flavour bomb, I recommend trying the Ibérico pork chop with apple and Madeira ($280). Casa Lisboa amplifies this combination by cooking grilled pork with finely chopped apple and butter. The meat exuded a fruity aroma, and the addition of a rich Madiera sauce gave a tropical element to the dish. This is a superb main, proving that apple is a unique substitute for mashed potato or any other carb side.
The alheira migas ($310) was laid out on a wooden chopping board. Beef short rib is slow-cooked for 40 hours in order to produce tender, succulent meat. A side of mixed kale, white beans and alheira (game sausage) was served alongside.
Last but not least, the mango and passion fruit burrata ($90) was the perfect ending to this delicious summer tasting. Chef Pascual mixes together mascarpone cheese and cream and forms the mixture into a ball that looks identical to burrata cheese. The bottom layer has a cake-based crumble, and the whole thing is garnished with fresh mango and passion fruit sauce. Our table was tempted to order one each – it was that good!
Each time I’ve gone to Casa Lisboa, the kitchen has something new on the menu, and I’m always extremely impressed with the quality of the food and wine served. I recommend checking out the summer menu while it lasts and, for sure, to order two portions of the burrata dessert, which was highly addictive.
2/F, Parekh House, 63 Wyndham Street, Central, 2905 1168, book online
This write-up is based on a complimentary media tasting provided in exchange for an honest review and no monetary compensation. The opinions expressed here represent the author’s.
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