Florentine (Chogm Road, Saligao, Penha de Franca, Goa)

In a nutshell:

A memorable Mindblowing chicken cafreal and other dishes at this large restaurant that has been around for a long while

inside the restaurant
inside the restaurant

Address & other details:  Florentine

Meal for 2: 500 onwards

Cuisine type :  vegetarian & non vegetarian

Disclaimer: All restaurants / eateries reviewed by YUMMRAJ were visited by YUMMRAJ himself & he has paid for the full Bill & tips also. http://www.yummraj.com does not have even one featured / sponsored reviews. YUMMRAJ believes in going to a restaurant in anonymity, as a normal guest, experience everything & give a honest account of the same to you.

bill - proof of payment
bill – proof of payment

I rate all the food items & then give a final overall rating which is a simple average of the individual item ratings. What the ratings stand for: 5 = Excellent, 4 = Very Good, 3 = Good, 2 = Fair, 1 = Disaster.

Short description – in case u r in a hurry:

We got a recommendation to eat chicken cafreal at this restaurant from our foodie friend Anurag.

As most of u know, we are not fond of poultry chicken in general but as we pondered on the adjectives used in his recommendation, we decided to give it a shot.

We were being driven around by a gentleman who has been in taxi business in Goa for the last 30 + years – he was driving his taxi that day. We told him florentine and he had a blank look on this face. So we resorted to Google Bhai

As we neared the restaurant, he told us ‘ u know there is a good restaurant here that u must try – cafreal restaurant.’ We said we were going to florentine to eat cafreal. Once we were there he said ‘oh this is called florentine!!! We hv always known it as cafreal restaurant.’

Later in the day we went to a fantastic place called museum of Goa – one of the most unique museums I have seen in india. This museum was depiction of history of Goa thru contemporary art. There we saw an exhibit and a note on the origin of cafreal.

exhibit and a note on the origin of cafreal at Museum of Goa
exhibit and a note on the origin of cafreal at Museum of Goa

‘Starting 1600s, the Portuguese used to bring thousands of slaves from Mozambique. Many of them were mustered in the army. In one of the army camps the African soldiers cooked a chicken dish using chillies, coriander and other spices. Legend has it that one Portuguese officer liked this dish and named it cafreal, from the word kafir ( which the slaves used to be referred to). It is now served in many places in Lisbon and Goa today’.

Chicken cafreal
Chicken cafreal

The restaurant had a large dining hall with a very high ceiling. The furniture was wooden.

Staff were old timers. The gentleman serving us was particularly good.

Loved the food here.

Detailed description – in case u hv the time to njoy reading:

Chicken cafreal was of course star of the show by a huge margin. They served half a chicken in a dish. That included the breast as well as the leg piece.

Chicken cafreal
Chicken cafreal

The chicken meat was fresh. It was soft and juicy probably coz it was cooked with the skin on. The curry was a dry thick gravy that was just toooo good – almost unreal. Lack words to describe it. Rate it 4.95/5

Chicken cafreal
Chicken cafreal

We also tried Prawn curry – there was suboptimal salt in the curry. After adding salt the curry tasted very good. Rate it 4.25/5 less 0.5 = 3.75 due to the salt problem.

Prawn curry
Prawn curry

The Prawns provided only flavor, were a bit rubbery and good but not great to taste. This was probably coz the prawns were Overcooked in hot gravy for longer. Rate the prawns 3/5. Overall rating of the dish is 3.4/5

We enjoyed the cafreal with Inhouse baked bread called Poi. Super duper soft within and firm outside, this bread was just excellent. Rate it 4.5/5


Overall rating of food at florentine averages out to 4.3/5

Wud Look forward to revisiting.


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