時尚高潮食記：台北東區ＴＵＧＡ葡萄牙餐聽：原來葡萄牙菜這麼好吃！Review: TUGA Authentic Portuguese Restaurant Taipei
(英文版看下面/scroll down for English)
殘編吃遍世界，卻還是對「葡式料理」四字稍感莫生。走過45個國家，「葡萄牙」很遺憾的，還在我的「想去」名單裡。澳門的葡萄牙文化深，殘編澳門走過千百回，自以為吃過葡萄牙菜，卻對葡萄牙菜沒有什麼深刻的印象，所以也不會想吃。這次回加拿大，我的葡萄牙學生上課不專心，每次上課只管嚷著自己多想念家鄉菜，才令我好奇到底有什麼菜比我的粉紅色拐杖還有魅力，於是決定給葡萄牙菜另一次機會。英文說「Everybody deserves a second chance (人人都有第二次機會的權利）」，我想：「葡萄牙料理」也該有這個權力。
Having traveled across the world and tried all kinds of exotic food, Portuguese food is still one cuisine I’m unfamiliar with.
I paid a visit to TUGA Portuguese Restaurant in Taipei and I was mind blown.
Watch our video first:
After 45 countries, Portugal is sadly still on my bucket list. I thought I knew Portuguese food after many trips to Macau. I was wrong. Macau was colonized by Portugal for over 400 years in history, and its Portuguese influences still preserve. I’ve tried many Portuguese restaurants in Macau who claim themselves authentic. However, none of them made an impression on me, so I always thought Portuguese food was just “meh.” A Portuguese friend of mine wouldn’t seem to stop talking about his hometown food whenever we meet, which intrigued me and decided to give Portuguese Food another try. After all, everyone deserves a second (or 100) chance, right?
Located in Taipei ‘s hustling and bustling’s Da’an District, TUGA brings you right to Portugal the moment you arrive at the restaurant. Guests are welcomed by a Portuguese wine cellar upon entry. Adjacent to it is a wall of extensive Portuguese canned food. Diners can pick from the selection to enjoy with their meal. The menu is friendly, with three languages (Chinese, Portuguese and English). Gone are the days when I had to keep my face down while “Pinokio” stared at other tables and pointed with no manners (Pinokio is a character in my book, email us to pre-order)
食物 (The Food)：
At TUGA, 2 kinds of breads are served before meal, including a sweet potato bread and original white bread. They are served with three kinds of paste: “tuna cream, garlic cream, and “olives with olive oil.”
Our server is knowledgeable and provides reliable recommendations. He tells us straight up not to expect for more than just the ingredients on the menu when we’re trying to pick a salad.
- 主廚特調鮮蔬沙拉 $180
This is a veggie-salad with baby corn, tomatoes and cashews. The salad is served with two dressings: A thicker Balsamic and a vinaigrette.
- 葡式臘腸蔬菜炒蛋 Farinheira com ovos e vegetais (Portuguese Yellow sausage, egg and cabbage) $280
Eggs are scrambled with Portuguese sausage and cabbage, the taste is natural with no additives other than just the ingredients written on the menu.
- 橄欖油香煎蘑菇 Cogumelos Salteados con Presunto (picante)/ Sautee mushrooms ($220)
Mushrooms are usually prepared with butter. I’ve mentioned many times how I’m terrified of butter. The mushrooms here are sautéed with olive oil.
- 葡式炸馬介休求 Pasteis de Bacalhau (Portuguese fried codfish cakes) $350
“Bacalhau is codfish that’s dried and salted; it is an essential ingredient in Portuguese cuisine. A friend of mine once’s expressed his sorrow for not being able to taste his favorite dish since his mother passed away.
Antonia, my childhood maid, used to cook my favorite “fish ball” dish. She has a secret recipe from her hometown, Sri Lanka. Before she left us, she made sure to leave my mom her secret recipe so I could continue eating my favorite dish even when she wasn’t around. Maybe intelligence is genetic; mom couldn’t remember a single thing from the recipe. I grew up longing for Antonia’s fish balls. When I Googled “Sri Lankan fish balls” over the years, nothing was quite the same.
The “Pasteis de Bacalhau,” brought eyes to my tears, I almost cried “Antonia!”
- 葡式啄木鳥牛排 Pica-Pau (Woodpecker) $800
Pica-Pau is steak cut into strips, similar to the way how Taiwanese cook beef, the dish comes with a lot of juice and fries to dip with.
- 橄欖油香烤章魚 Polvo a Lagareiro (Octopus “Lagareiro” Style) $780
This dish is made with octopus with tentacles and potatoes baked with olive oil. Usually seafood shrink after cooking,this octopus is still very big when it is served. I can’t imagine its size before being cooked. The texture is slightly chewy but still remains very tender, completely different from the rubber band octopus we often eat at night markets.
- 葡式燉豬肉左紅豆Feijoada à Transmontana $680
This is a traditional Portuguese soup dish that the locals like to cook for guests and feasts because it contains enough ingredients to feed all taste buds. The components include pork, pig’s head, pig’s ear cooked with red beans, cabbage, and spices and makes a nutritious dish. The soup is very tasty, and the meat is tender.
- 葡式海鮮燉飯Arizona de Marisco (英譯：seafood rice) $800
Most “Seafood rice” we see at restaurants in taiwan is usually paella (Spanish) or risotto (Italian). The Portuguese-style seafood rice is completely different from the two. It’s more watery and take on an almost stew-like form, similar to a Chinese-style savory porridge. The dish retains its original seafood flavors and perfect for Taiwanese beginners to exotic cuisine.
- 蛋白霜布丁 (Molotov)$120
Molotov is a traditional Portuguese dessert made with egg white. It’s light and airy and perfect for after a Portuguese feast.
- 米布丁 Arroz Doce (英譯：Sweet Rice Pudding ) $120
Taking on the same “happy yellow,” this dessert is made with long grain rice and is enlightening.
Taking on the same “happy yellow,” this dessert is made with long-grain rice and sprinkled with a bit of cinnamon. Both the colour and the taste are enlightening.
Of all the items we tasted, none of them disappointed. Tuga Portuguese Restaurant Taipei is one worth revisiting until you’ve tried them all!