Do you know that the first chicken cafreal in Goa was served at O’Coqueiro? Way back in 1968, a small eating joint originated with simple Goan fare, only to be made famous by chef Gines Viegas when he returned from east Africa. The capture of the notorious Charles Sobraj added further luster, and chef Peter Fernandes who was apprenticed to legendary Gines at that time sourcing out the rope for the police. Today with chef Peter at the helm…he has the distinction of being awarded the “best chef of India’ in the non-hotel category by the Government of India, it has developed a reputation for serving authentic Goan- Portuguese food. Now we all know that most Goan preparations have one main ingredient-the coconut. The Portuguese called this nut after the famous witch of that period…coco. The name ‘Coqueiro’ itself lends credence to most of the masalas that go into the preparation…it means coconut tree.
The older staff will tel you that the notorious Sobraj was nursing a Feni and a chicken cafreal and stuffed crabs before he was caught. Good taste. The crabs spiced to perfection before being stuffed in the shell is dee..licious. as is the stuffed mushrooms with cheese. Vegetarian do not despair. The kitchens are capable of taking out old vegetarian delicacies popular in Goan kitchens. Order a drink and as in the past a portion of Aad Maas, those saliva gathering preparation is great with a peg of feni. It sets your mood to match the simple dining hall with black and white photographs that adorn the walls. Another hot favourite is the Tisreo sukhe, if you do not mind getting your fingers ‘Finger licking good’ , so do not bother about the cutlery so thoughtfully provided. And the roasts? Try out the tongue and the pork? Old traditional fare but oh..oh so tasty. And if tradition is what you are looking for…the Portuguese favourite Beef Roulade, rolled strips of meat with a tongue literal translation, the chefs have created that traditional fare which brings back nostalgic memories.
It’s the Goa of the past, a legacy which many want to cling to. The dessert menu is the sweet finale… Bebinca and at home, and chocolate brownies. Or perhaps the traditional cream caramel. The oh’s that emit from your chords as each and every morsel is savoured perhaps could be put together in song..o..o..o..co…queiro.
0832 2417806/ 2417344
NH 17, Cqueiro junction, Alto Porvorim, Goa