The more than 450-year-Old Portuguese presence has had a consequential influence on Goa’s culture, architecture, and the way of life, in general. Once you get to Goa, you’ll find yourself surrounded by a lot of Portuguese-themed heritage villas, picturesque winding lanes, and ample sites that bear remnants of a forgotten Portuguese legacy. But when it comes to the cuisine, it has hints of Spanish, Mediterranean, Mexican, Peruvian, Bengali, Kashmiri, and Portuguese flavors – that are sure to leave a profound taste on your tongue.
And if you love to cook, you’d have a great time in the kitchen prepping up dishes for your friends and family. But if you’re in the mood to try some local flavors, here are some hidden restaurants that serve the most authentic cuisines in Goa.
Sitting comfortably next to the iconic Literati Bookstore in Candolim, Gusto specializes in a Mediterranean and Kashmiri menu. While you have Mezze Platter, Seared Yellow Fin Tuna, Israeli Chicken, & Badam Korma on the main course menu, we’d recommend you not-to-miss the Kashmiri Kong Firin (semolina pudding with nuts, fruit & saffron) for that delightful after-taste.
With its abundant use of chilli and cumin powder, this Tex-Mex restaurant perfectly appeals to the Indian palate. Try the Macho Nacho, sweet chicken wings, delicious tortillas and team them up with freshly brewed beer. Isn’t that a match made in heaven?
This Burmese restaurant has a very relaxed vibe with its natural wooden furniture and bamboo walls. While here, dig in to the Spicy Tuna Larb, Slow Cooked Pork Belly, and the Homemade Shan Tofu. Oh, we forgot to tell you about the exciting mix of cocktails here – take your pick between Lychee Martini and Tamarind Martini.
An eco-hotel-cum-restaurant-cum-art gallery, Saraya, sits pretty in the upscale Goan neighborhood of Sangolda. You can swear by the healthy vegetarian menu and enjoy an organic, gluten-free, vegan-friendly diet. And that’s not it. You also get to have homemade vegan ice cream!
A quaint and cozy tavern in Candolim – Bhatti Village is the perfect place to find authentic Catholic Goan food. Open only for dinner, some must-try items on the list include Kokum Pork, Fresh Sana, Ox Tongue, and Dry Prawn Curry. Wash these down with some urrak or feni to get a taste of real Goa.
Serving traditional Bengali and European culinary masterpieces, Mustard is one condiment that is extensively found in both the cuisines here. Whether you choose to opt for Machher Chop, Rui Maacher Shorshay Jhaal, Bhapa Doi, or dig in to the savory Dijon-stuffed Chicken Breast & Pork Medallions, you’re sure to find something that tickles your fancy.
ON THE GO
Being run by Marco Crisanto & Mona Nolavalia – this Peruvian café ensures consistent, high-quality food, drinks & service. Tell Marco your preference and he will do the rest. Oh, and Mona runs her own brand of specialty desserts called Mona’s Pantry – the Espiro Limeno is something to die for.
Now that you’ve a good knowledge of all the hidden gems (or eateries) in your Goan neighborhood, stay at an OYO Home and live Goa like never before. Head out and about, and taste the real flavors of Goa.
P.s. You might like these related resources:
- Best time to visit Goa, the Asian Paradise
- Top attractions and things to do in GOA
- 30 best Goa tourist places that you simply can’t miss
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