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An old house that has seen many years go by and is notoriously known for the capture of Charles Sobhraj back in the day. It even has a mural on the verandah dedicated to his legacy at O’Coqueiro, Porvorim junction. Walk in for a choice between the air-conditioned and the open space. The open space is airy with a bar right in the middle of the area. The seating is casual and this space also has a private dining area. If you wish to move into the air-conditioned area beside the small bar ‘Taverna’, then you have a choice of choosing your own private dining room depending on the numbers. A quick glance through the menu and you will find old Portuguese favourites are listed. For starters opt for the Pasties de Peche – 8 croquettes of fish with a potato mix or you can stick to the popular Rissoise de Camarao. The prawn filling in a crunchy casing is a delight. For mains, try the Castelaa De Porco which are succulent pork chops in a mild sauce on hash brown or the Galinha Cafreal, a half chicken served the traditional way which is a full leg and breast. For the continental fare, don’t miss the Beef O Coqueiro. The meat is succulent in a flavorful brown sauce with a fried egg on top that adds to the taste. A perfectly nostalgic experience.
When you think of Goa, what is it that first comes to your mind? Is it the stunning beaches or is it exciting nightlife? For us, Goa is all about food. The city is home to some truly enchanting eateries, each with their own perspective on regional gastronomy. Gorgeous old villas have been converted into fine dining restaurants, giving the diners a backdrop seeped in culture and history. If your tastes run in the same direction then drive down to Porvorim in Penha de Franca, where you will find a splendid eatery by the name of ‘O’ Coqueiro’. Any local will tell you this place is legendary. This old house, which was infamous for the capture of Charles Sobhraj, basks in the scandal rather than avoid it. A stunning mural on the veranda is the indication to this fact.
If your interest is peaked then you will find their menu even more fascinating. The chef serves a menu brimming with old Goan favourites. Classic Goan recipes that you hope to see in any good regional restaurant finds a spot at O’ Coqueiro. Get your fill of the seafood preparations. They are authentic and excellently executed. They are pretty much used to catering to the late night partygoers who pop in for a bite into wee hours of the morning. Surprisingly, they don’t do alcohol so make do with coffees and juices. Grab couple of appetizers to kick-start the menu but keep your focus on the mains. Devour, fish ambotik, galinha cafreal, pan fried calamari, roast pork, beef chilly fry, mattar paneer, mutton roganjosh, pork vindaloo, camarao O’Coqueiro, arroz de mariscos goesa and beef roast tongue.
Mop up the curries with a Goan pao or Goan pulao. Sugar buffs are coddled with an array of delectable desserts, which are guaranteed to shoot your calories up. Sample traditional Goan desserts bebinca, caramel desire and serradura. For a desi touch you have gulab jamun or matka kulfi. One look at the menu will tell you how reasonable this place is. A lovely Old Portuguese villa with a wraparound veranda is the location for O’ Coqueiro. They throw open the doors to let the sunlight pour in and wash the extended lobby with soft light. Furnishings are smart and chic. Use of dual toned sofa chairs adds to the room a much-needed contrast. A wonderful place for a date or a cozy family dinner.