The best meal in Portugal can be found in the charming and tucked away town of Évora. From their appetizers to their entrées, to their fabulous wines, it’s all here at Tábua do Naldo!
Your Tábua is waiting…
Upon entering Tábua do Naldo, one would never expect the type of gourmet meal that’s being prepared for them in the kitchen. With very limited seating, and tight space, it’s more like a little hole-in-the-wall with unexpected elegant dining. With linen napkins, and high-end wine glasses already set in place on the table, the dichotomy makes one realize they’re in a special place.
Chef Naldo began his cooking career nearly 20 years ago. Having already owned and operated another restaurant some time ago, he has already had enough experience under his belt to know what good service, and good quality are. Tábua do Naldo opened 4 years ago, and he is proud to note that he has done exceptionally well within that time.
The Best Meal in Portugal
For me, the experience was one in a million. The food was some of the best I’ve ever had in my life, and this is quite far from an exaggeration. Starting off with some incredible appetizers, they were only the tip of the iceberg. The codfish was my first entrée. The tastes that Naldo creates are absolutely incredible and unforgettable. The cod was so tender and soft, it was almost as though the fish melts in your mouth. But it wasn’t just the fish that made the dish. It was the ingredients he used surrounding it. With baby spinach lain on the cutting board, it is topped with small pink shrimp, the cod nestled on top with spices and flavors that are indescribably good.
And that black pork? Well apparently this is their top selling dish, not that the cod doesn’t do well. The black pork is a particular favorite of Brazilians who come in for a visit, and is their go-to dinner item. Marinated for several hours before serving, it’s just as tender and soft as the cod, but with completely different flavors.
Dessert & Wine
But the dessert. No. You can’t leave without having that. It was literally, and unequivocally the best dessert I’ve ever had in my life at any restaurant in the world. I was already about to explode after having tasted the two dishes that preceded it, but I couldn’t leave the restaurant without making sure there wasn’t a drop left on that plate. Dessert that good…it would be a sin not to finish it.
Have I mentioned the wine? The wine was almost as good as the dessert. And if you’re not in the mood to eat, you might want to stop into Naldo’s just to drink. With a great selection of excellent wines, he’ll pick just the right bottle for you.
The thought, precision and detail that has gone into all aspects of his restaurant is really quite incredible. From the food, to the service, to the beverages, they have their guests covered at all angles.
Now down to the brass tacks. Just how chichi is this place when it comes to the financial side of things? Quality does come at a cost, and I have to admit, in this case, it’s most certainly worth it!
I had the chance to try the tasting menu which goes for 30 Euro per person. This includes tasting portions, with appetizers, and a full-size dessert. Drinks are separate.
Naldo tells me that for those who would like to know why they should come to his restaurant, it’s because ‘Tábua’ is a very unique concept, and has a very unique menu. “The food you find here, is food you won’t find anywhere else in Portugal.” I couldn’t agree more. And I should know. I had no better meal than I did here while I was in Portugal. And I was there for a whole month!
But don’t take my word for it. Stop in yourself and try some of their amazing creations. And when you do, make sure to tell them Lisa sent you!