For those in search of a gastronomic “something special” during their visit to Coimbra, Portugal, the Restaurant Arcadas da Capela could be just the thing.
Located in the luxurious Hotel Quinta das Lagrimas, a former residence of Portugal’s nobility, the restaurant comes with a big helping of history and drama to add to the ambience of your meal. The Quinta das Lagrimas was the scene of a tragic 14th-century love story involving Portugal’s crown prince and his illicit love, Ines de Castro.
In keeping with the luxurious setting of the hotel, Arcadas da Capela Restaurant has earned itself a coveted place in the Michelin Guide for its high-quality food and dining experience.
Set in the palace’s former stables, the restaurant is decorated in a relaxed, contemporary style and offers lovely views out over the greenery of the expansive hotel gardens. During the summer season tables are set outside on the adjoining terrace to enable guests to fully enjoy the balmy Coimbra climate.
The brainchild of chef Albano Lourenço and consultant Joachim Koerper, Arcadas da Capela Restaurant specialises in traditional dishes from all over Portugal, but with a modern, international twist.
The chef describes the style as “cozinha de mercado”, or cooking from the market, thanks to his dedication to selecting the freshest and most interesting produce available each day at the market in Coimbra. As a result, the menu is updated regularly to reflect the changing seasons and consequent availability of the best ingredients.
A daily lunch menu offers three courses for around 20 euros, which is excellent value for a Michelin-rated establishment, or you can choose to dine a la carte. Diners can expect an amuse bouche, such as a marinated salmon flower with the compliments of the house, before beginning their meal proper.
Typical starters include stir-fried peas with egg and bacon, goats’ cheese ravioli, cured ham with pickled cucumber and risotto. A selection of meat and fresh fish dishes is available for main course, with the symphony of fish a particular favourite.
There are many options available from the well-stocked wine cellar, and the maître d’, like the waiting staff, is happy to offer suggestions.
The Arcadas da Capela Restaurant is open for lunch from 12.30pm to 2.30pm and for dinner from 7.30pm to 10pm, 365 days a year. Average prices without wine, 45 euros a la carte or around 20 euros for set three-course lunch. Well worth making the short trip from nearby Coimbra.
Arcadas da Capela
Hotel Quinta das Lagrimas
Rua Antonio Augusto Gonçalves
Tel: +351 239 802 380
Fax: +351 239 441 695