Kiko Martins is a name lisboners and Portuguese people know and follow already.
When it refers to the dining scene in town, O Talho and Cevicheria are already established addresses . The first is only dedicated to earth and meat lovers (Talho means butcher in Portuguese). There is worth to try the tartar with radish mayo and mustard, displayed as an egg, with a vodka shot to mix with the meat.
The second, Cevicheria is in opposite, dedicated to the sea. At Cevicheria, chef Kiko takes the ceviche as the starting point and explores it further. Mixing it with local ingredients and learnt techniques along this career, the result is a fine curated menu, where freshness and mouth-watering foods are an asset.
2016 was for this young chef a big year, marked by the opening of his new restaurant in Lisbon, O Asiático (means the Asian).
To visit O Asiático is to embark in Chef Kiko, a globe trotter journey through Asia, from Nepal to Japan.
Passing the Neon light in the facade, the interior is decorated with memories brought by the chef during his travels, such as photographs taken by him in one of the 23 he visited along his culinary journey.
The space inside, nearly 800 sq. meter, organized in two levels, sets a cosmopolitan and contemporary atmosphere. On the upper level, at the Mezzanine, visitors can start with an appetizer cocktail, like the Shoshu (a vibrant with lemon grass) while a magician does some live and interactive performances.
On the lower level, headed with the big windows and glass ceiling and tree, the dining area is bright and invaded with light. Indeed the space is beautiful and sets the tone for a relaxed but yet vibrant dinner. In the summer, the courtyard promises to become a must.
Jumping to the palate journey, at the table, visit Vietnam with a bull’s pho and wagyu; or cross the ocean to Thailand with the squid tom yum. If you prefer to mouth-travel to Japan, try the Chawanmushi Miso with scallops, “a steamed dish appreciated by Japanese people” explains the chef.
If you are looking for one of the latest trends in food, try the surf and turf (a combination of meat and seafood), that will transport you to Korea, with the oyster foam, Korean beef tartar, nashi pear and crispy noori algae.
End with a sweet curry: a coconut cake, curry cream, lychee, spicy mango and sorbet.