Tucked away in a corner of Linda-a-Velha, easy to miss if you’re not actively looking for it, you’ll find the charming Dominican Republic restaurant Recuerda Amor.
First of all, this is a family restaurant and you will get treated as one from the moment you set foot, which pairs nicely with food that’s served.
For starters I only tried the San Isidro, a cassava puree based croquette stuffed with other vegetables inside, although relatively small, they were incredibly enjoyable, no oily taste that you tend to find on similar dishes, and the dipping sauce really brought the flavor of the greens to the top.
Locrio de Carnes
A turmeric seasoned rice with 3 meats (if you differentiate bacon from pork). A rather simple dish (in theory) but I cannot overstate how good it tasted, on the first bite I knew I was going to have a smile on my face for the rest of the day.
The meat was perfectly cooked and as a rice lover, that one set a new bar for deliciousness.
I would even go so far as to say, this dish redefined my definition of comfort food.
Pica – Pollo con Tostones
It’s deep fried chicken, fried perfectly and served with cooking bananas (also fried). Crackling chicken skin and a sweet-but-not-really garnish made this a very enjoyable dish, had I not tasted the locrio first, this would have been my pick of best meal, but alas the strings of faith did not saw fit for that to happen.
Moro de Habichuela Roja y Carne de Res
Red bean rice served with a side of beef stew, much like the locrio, this is a comfort food bomb but with a stronger twang brought by the stew.
While enjoyable, the stew did not pulled my taste bud strings all that well, the strong flavor hinted that in the long run would make me queasy, your millage will definitely vary as my friend who ordered it experienced the same bliss effect that the locrio brought me.
The dessert was mango cake, it looks like a Pão-de-ló de Ovar (a humid variation of a traditional sponge cake) with mango cream oozing out of it. I was expecting a sugar bomb, but it definitely wasn’t, it was actually a good closing chapter for the whole meal.
As a Portuguese native, I didn’t find any flavors particularly strange nor aromas that exotic, what you’ll find is well made food, cooked to perfection and served with immense care.