Once a year, Lisbon is adorned with ribbons and balloons to celebrate Santo António. Through the capital, the most traditional neighborhoods commemorate the patron saint, and this year I chose to go to Mouraria.
The decision wasn’t innocent. Where else could I find a little stall with great Portuguese chefs?
Bisca dos 3 is a gastronomic pop-up where 3 friends gather around 3 pots to cook traditional Portuguese flavors. The “players” of this Bisca: my friend and Chef of “Café Príncipe Real” (Hotel Memmo Pricípe Real), Vasco Lello; Chef Luís Rodrigues, responsible for the restaurant “RIB Beef & Wine” (Pousada de Lisboa); and the food expert Nuno Nobre.
Santo António and its flavors
I went to debut the bar installed, until June 16, near the Largo da Rosa in Mouraria. And, of course, the flavors didn’t disappoint.
I started with the Snails. The first of the year! And what a taste, of flawless salt and just a little spicy.
From there I proceeded to the Moelas, rich in sauce, and tasted the Meia Desfeita de Bacalhau na Brasa (grilled codfish salad). Of the three sandwiches that the trio idealized for the occasion, I ate the Mística de Vaca — with cow’s ham — and Trifana de Porco (my favorite!) — a mixture of pork belly and bacon. Missed the chicken sandwich with gravy and the fried little birds… but the stomach couldn’t take more!
For the drink, I accepted the recommendation: Bagaceira Sour. Now, I’m not a fan of aguardientes or bagaceiras, but believe me when I tell you that this Portuguese approach to the well-known Pisco Sour (a typical Chilean and Peruvian drink) is worth it!
A greener approach
Another of the aspects that enchanted me in this year’s celebrations of Santo António was the ecological approach that was given to the party. At least in Mouraria.
Everywhere they spread small receptacles so that the participants in the celebrations could recycle. Plus, all dishes and cutlery are recyclable, and drinks are served in a single glass that should be reused throughout the evening.
If you are curious to meet Bisca dos 3, enjoy the night of Santo António and go taste these beautiful flavors, while listening and dancing to the best sounds of the Popular Saints festivities in Lisbon.