Uma Casa is a Portuguese place that opened in January of this year. Went two nights ago and loved it.
Cocktails are all of the amaro, vermut, sherry, type (no liquor license), and there is a good selection of Portuguese and Spanish wines. With our dinner we had a very interesting bottle of a Portuguese red bubbly - Luis Pato Casta Baga Beiras NV - made with the Baga grape - a thick-skinned, dark grape. It was flinty bone dry and very refreshing.
Three of us split the pasteis de bacalao, housemade bread with chouriço and olive butters (henceforth, all butters should be chouriço butter), beautiful grilled sardines, octopus, crispy polenta cake, with kale, mushrooms, and a madeira sauce, and piri piri chicken wings.
The sardines over caramelized onions and hard boiled eggs were seriously swoon-worthy, and worth the bone-picking. I would have a whole plate to myself next time.
I’m a new appreciator of croquetas, after visiting Lisbon early last year, and the pasteis de bacalao here were a fine example of them. Creamy inside, but with little chunks of potato.
The octopus could have used a little charring for me but otherwise was tender in
The wings were a little tough but the sauce was great, and what i remember of the piri piri in Lisbon.
The polenta cake was probably my least favorite of the savory dishes, but one of my friends’ favorite. i found the sauce too sweet, but otherwise the cake itself was prepared nicely - crispy outside, tender inside.
We split two desserts: a forgettable cheesecake thing, and the pasteis de nata, was sadly, was nothing like what you find in Lisbon or Belem - even the ones i had in the airport were better. No tender flakiness, no butteriness… you had to saw through this one to get a bite, with a knife.
The place itself is lovely and airy, the service warm and attentive. This feels like a personal passion project for Chef Telmo Faria (formerly of Tacolicious). I’d go back in a heartbeat and take people with me.