AlmejaMagazine Flavour | 04 Jul 2018
TO GO AND COME BACK
There is something special when we enter Almeja. Something that resembles our house. Warm. A feeling of belonging. As if the place were ours too, even though it was not. We find ourselves at number 819 of Fernandes Tomás street, in Porto. In a place where once existed a grocery store – a Japonesa – Almeja welcomes us as if welcoming us at home. In Sofia and João’s house, who are husband and wife, and the owners of this restaurant. Everything there was carefully thought out so that those who arrive do not wish to leave. It makes you want to stay. Almeja, in Portuguese, means to want, to desire, to feel. And the place matches the name perfectly. The unpretentious and most welcoming décor keeps some memories of the past, such as the entrance floor and the hand-painted tiles of the baseboards, or the enormous mirror that covers one of the main room’s walls which offers the restaurant its extensiveness. The richness of this place is in simplicity. And in the details, that guided us throughout the meal. We were seated at one of the two shop windows’ tables overlooking the street. Who passes always stops to look. To look at us. We as well, at that time, central characters of Almeja. With a casual fine dining concept, in Almeja the most important is enhancing the products and, consequently, João Cura adjusts the menu to the four seasons. João’s style “is a cuisine of memories”, therefore many of the dishes that the chefincludes in the menu are memories of flavours he knew as a child. We tried the Tasting Menu from the spring selection, which took us on a memorable journey through the restaurant’s flavours.
Featured in ROOF 15
Text: Isadora Faustino
Photos: Courtesy Almeja
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