BOCA is nestled in a three-storey shophouse and each of the floors has their own names and “characters”. The first floor features bar seating by the open kitchen and is called Pesticos which means ‘small bites’. The second floor is the main dining area and its called BOCA, which means ‘mouth’. The top floor is still undergoing renovations but it is meant to be a wine cellar and it is called Adega. As the name suggests, we dined on the second floor, but the lighting was so much better on the first floor.
The first thing you will notice about the interior are the ceramic black swallows adorning the walls. There are a total of 700 of these birds and they are famous for their migratory journey to Portugal every spring where they nest with their life-long companions. The decor of this restaurant was carefully curated and many of the fixtures were specially imported from Portugal.
This is a basket of amazing homemade bread. The flavours depend on the ingredients of the day. We had plain, strawberry, Japanese taro and squid ink. The squid ink was superb! It was so good we asked for some to take home ;).
Salada de Polvo a Marinheiro aka Octopus Salad ($24). The octopus is blanched quickly several times to ensure that it remains tender and not rubbery. Then, it is thinly sliced and dressed with crunchy capsicums, garlic, red onions, cilantro, vinegar, extra virgin olive oil and smoky paprika. The olive oil at BOCA is imported from Southern Portugal.
Chourico em Chamas aka Flamed Chorizo ($36). Absolutely stunning presentation as the sausage is flambéed at tableside! The dish is served with homemade bread which is used to sop up the tasty oil left on the plate.
Bacalhau a Braz aka Braz Codfish ($28), another dish featuring bacalhau. The cod is mixed with crisp deep-fried shredded potatoes (kind of reminiscent of rosti), caramelised onions, confit cherry tomatoes and a beaten egg. The taste of fish is more prominent here than in the starter.
Acorda de Bacalhau ou Camarao aka Shrimp Porridge ($28). The porridge is not made with rice or oats, but bread. The bread is aged for two days before immersing it in shrimp stock and then simmered and stirred over a low flame until the bread is soft like porridge.
Bife a Cafe aka Coffee Steak ($48). 200g medium-rare Australian tenderloin, served with coffee sauce which is made with a shot of expresso with mustard, cream and a dash of cognac. It is accompanied with rice cooked with almonds, garlic, onions, herbs and butter.
The steak was paired with Monte de Pegeguina, Alentejo, 2012, which was awarded Bronze- International Wine Challenge 2014, UK. The wine is from the south of Portugal and the characters on the labels are drawn by the three daughters of the vintner.
The tarts are dusted with cinnamon and icing sugar before being served, just like how they are like in Portugal. Some patrons actually call ahead to reserve these tarts because they sell out very quickly.
We ended the dinner with a group shot in the kitchen with the chefs.
6 Bukit Pasoh Road,Singapore 089820
Tel: 6221 0132
Monday to Saturday 1900-0000hrs