O'Fado Lunch Specials
This should probably be with the recession busters, because I'm sure they'd cover two meals if one were not starved when they went in, after taking one's mother to the Registry to renew her license...
But I digress. Thanks to Striperguy and Ituanas, I started making up for lost time at the renamed and restaffed old O'Fado (they have now added the apostrophe into the name). We went for lunch, so ate in the bar. But there is a list of Weekly Luncheon Specials, and it rocks!
Monday- Coelho Guisado (Rabbit Stew) 9.95
Tuesday- Bacalhau a Gomes de Sa 9.95
(cod fish, potatoes, onions eggs olive oil and garlic)
Wednesday- Galinha Guisada c/esparguett 8.95
(chicken stew with spaghetti)
Thursday- Feijoada a Transmontana 8.95
(Beans stew with cabbage, carrot, chourico and pork)
Friday- Polvo Guisado (octopus stew) 10.95
(See you there, my precious!)
Saturday- Bacalhau Cozido c/grao de Bico 10.95
(boiled cod w/chickpeas, boiled potato and egg)
Sunday- Cozido a Portuguese (Portuguese Boiled dinner) 15.95
I had the Tuesday special; I just love me that Portuguese home cookin'! Everything was tender and flavorsome; how do the Portuguese boil those potatoes that seem moist all the way thru, and never watery? Chunks of salt cod, with so much more flavor that fresh cod(which I'm not the biggest fan of) all favored with onions that have melted away and hard-boiled egg slivers...I love this stuff!
Galleymom had the Caldeirada from the dinner menu, and I'm pleased to report it was better than ever (18.95) Huge, tons of mussels, shrimp, squid, swordfish and cod. And potatoes. And the broth! Even thicker and more flavorful than before; watching her slurp it out of the serving ladles just solidified her true chowhound bona-fides. The owner was lurking at the bar, listening to our "oohs' and 'ahhs", and the bartender, who we knew as one of the waiters from before, wrapped up extra bread for mom so she'd have something to soak up her sauce with when she ate the second part of the caldron....
The only bad news; there is no octopus on the regular lunch menu or dinner menu, so I'll have to show up on Fridays....
O'Fado is back; long live O'Fado!
I want to go during the week for lunch with a friend and her baby. I have always been at night or on the weekend and ate in the dinning room. I am wondering if the lunch at the bar is appropriate for a baby? all I keep thinking is reese witherspoon saying "you have a baby..... .....in a bar"
I would agree that its no problem at all during the day. The "bar" is basically setup like a Portuguese corner restaurant, minus maybe the plastic tables and chairs. A few tables well away from the bar itself and nobody pays mind to kids running around. If they are older, there is a pool table to distract. I would only comment that as an ethnic bar, it has a larger male clientele than mixed company (and in the majority Brazilians), but couples come in and sit at the bar, and everyone is respectful. At night the dining room would be a better option.
GG I thought those specials were all-day specials (the ones on the sandwich board as we came in)? They also have a basic lunch menu with common dishes like carne alentejana, plus some other specials in grease pencil near the bar including wine bottle ($14-16) specials. I have always liked that they have done some plates which others overlook, the feijoada a transmontanha and bacalhau c/grau de bico are a couple new ones along that line.
I went right after Striperguy's original post and had a great Portuguese steak... and they do a nice job with Portuguese fries. We went recently right at the beginning of Lent and had a sub-par experience. I had been wanting to go back to Trackside (where the chef was for a while) for over a year for the caldeirada, which they make to order (expect to wait about 20 minutes). Its also enough for 3 people to eat, seriously. In any case, when ours arrived, the whitefish (I think pollock this time, not necessarily cod) was noticeably off as were the clams. It took a while to creep up on us and while eating around those was fine for a while (the squid, mussels, swordfish, and shrimp were excellent) eventually the taste stuck with you. The scallops also didn't seem that fresh. A sandwich ordered by someone else at the table had also been marinating a long time (it had a really heavy vinha d'alhos flavor and may have been a bit off). I was surprised that on a weekend at the beginning of lent they wouldn't have fresh fish, especially since they put more effort into variety and didn't take any short cuts (eg sagres in fall river using chinese "bay" scallops, o dinis using crab stick), but it seemed like an honest mistake so we didn't send it back after eating half of the portion. In any case it didn't scare me off, but I would ask next time if the fish was fresh before ordering and send it back if there was any issue.
Central Bakery up the road has great rolls, sometimes has malasadas, and I don't much like the filling for their pasteis de nata, but the pastry is great (usually they are too sweet for me, but I would order the bean based pastel de feijao instead). And New England Meat market has some Portuguese cheeses worth checking out, plus a decent selection of Portuguese wines.
One thing I noticed at O'Fado was they were serving a box wine which assuming it was Portuguese wasn't among the ones I have seen (the most common portuguese one around is "baguinha" which is a drinkable, but plain table wine... 10.5-11% alcohol, bit cloying amount of residual sugar w/o much acid for me, not as good as some of the better 5L garrafao bottles often served as a house table wine). In any case, I didn't get a chance to try or confirm what the box wine at O'Fado's was, but would be curious about a report. (NE Meat Market didn't have any box wines, but had a decent selection of garrafoes, the better ones seemed to be missing their labels.)
Oh, I'm the one that owes the follow-up post!
After the great lunch (they have the specials til they run out, so you takes your chances at dinner), I went back with Galleymom and TC for a Sunday night dinner. TC had some steak (can't remember which) that he thought was amazing, and he doesn't like Portuguese food (!!)
During our previous bar lunch, Mom had her favorite, the caldierada; it's all she ever gets...It was full of perfectly cooked, fresh fish, and the broth was complex, with a little nice, smooth heat.
Then, when we went back for dinner, she and I both got the caldeirada. It was like a different dish. Both times, it took the 20 or 25 minutes, but this time, the sauce resembled a quick saute, and nothing had melded. Twice as much fish, but as she heaped some onto my plate, with the first scallop, I said, "Old". Nothing was old enough to make you sick, but it was definitely past fresh, and shouldn't have been served on a Saturday night. I was hoping it was an anomaly.
It's strange that the A Team seems to be cooking at lunch...What is the bacalhao c/grau?
Hey galleygirl, if it's octopus you're looking for, check out the Azorean in Gloucester. I had it there a month or two ago, and it was stellar. Now I'm wondering if I've ever had octopus properly cooked before. This was hot and tender and flavored with oil and garlic. It was a dinner special, so you might want to call ahead.