Peixaria da Esquina
From the burnished metal light fixtures to the warmth of the sunflower-yellow walls, Peixaria da Esquina glows. Housed in a former brewery, this restaurant – the brainchild of Vitor Sobral, Hugo Nascimento and Luís Espadana – is squarely aimed at lovers of fish and seafood. The menu overflows will all manner of sea creatures, including tuna, bream, scallops, oysters, razor clams and cuttlefish. And, though there is a section of the menu emphatically named “We have more than fish!”, fish is kind of the point of dining here; it’s what they do best. Nevertheless, that section is also worth sticking your nose into, just for the chance to embellish your meal with fries, tomato salad, or grilled veg.
The bountiful seafood and fish on offer can be marinaded, grilled, cured, baked, braised and sauteed; all masterfully so. Oysters are marinated with pear, ginger and lemon, scallops with almond and truffle, and tuna with mango, red bell pepper and pennyroyal. But, while the marinades and cures pack a flavourful punch, the fish and seafood themselves are treated lightly, letting their fantastic freshness sing through. Some combinations, meanwhile, just have to be tasted to be believed. The seared scallops with passion fruit and chives is just one of the perennial favourites. In fact, there’s a dish and a fish at Peixaria da Esquina to suit every palette.
The seafood is undoubtedly the main event here, but Peixaria da Esquina does have an accomplished dessert menu, featuring dishes like green tea pudding with watermelon and ginger, caramel pie with toasted pistachio, and chocolate mousse with marinated figs, which are definitely worth saving room for, if you can.