Goa’s hottest new restaurants

The Goa restaurant scene has been booming for a while now. These are some of the newest that caught our eye.

There’s something for everyone.

Goa’s hospitality industry hasn’t slowed down since last year and 2022 is just continuing this trend. The last two months have seen a slew of new restaurants opening up across the state, from chains setting up outposts in Goa to chefs creating exciting dining spaces.

Here’s a look at some of the newest places to open in Goa.

Bangkok Street Food Goa

The new fast-food joint aims to serve street food from Bangkok that is affordable, and fun. Think spring rolls, pad thai, som tam and more. As part of their launch, the place is serving fixed sample menus.

At Arpora. Timing: 12 noon to 4 pm, 6 pm to midnight. Call 8007992129. Facebook

Elaa Café

https://www.instagram.com/p/Cad5TyMKLnQ/

Chef Sandeep Sreedharan (of Mahé) opened his café and bar by a stream within The Hammock. The open-air space serves ‘earth-based food’ and champions local and sustainable fare sourced from a farm; much of the menu is vegan-friendly. He envisions the café to be inclusive, accessible, and wants to do more collaborations with others in the food space. Look for House Smoked Mackerel Poi, Pickled Aubergine (with whitebait), Rassam Cioppino, and guilt-free desserts, and coffee.

House No 1069, Gawaddi, Anjuna. Timing: 9.30 am to 7 pm. Instagram

Maai

Maai goa

Housed in a century-old bungalow, Maai sports a moody, old-world vibe. The food is a mix of Goan and Portuguese flavours on a plate and includes dishes like Raw Banana Cutlets, Chorizo Hummus, and Braised Piri Piri Clams. Look out for the live BBQ and grill, too. For drinks, there are kokum- and cashew feni-based cocktails.

House No 491, Baunta, Gumal Vaddo, Assagao. Timing: 12 noon to 1.30 am. Call 86058 82222. Instagram

Makutsu

https://www.instagram.com/p/CbHMGxbjIF_/

This new Japanese yakitori bar is small, dark and unassuming. But step inside (mind your head!), and there are Japanese posters on the wall, peppy music, dim lighting and small plates of food, with sake. There are 27 yakitori options, from different parts of the chicken to tender cubes of beef tongue, and sweet potato. The small plates are largely vegetarian, there’s a killer Ponzu dressing and for dessert, matcha cheesecake.

At Sao Tome, Rua 31 de Janeiro, Altinho, Panjim. Timing: 7pm to 11 pm. Call 83800 57888. Instagram

Mamagoto

The pan-Asian chain makes its debut in Goa serving ‘Asian flavours with a fun twist’. Look for wontons, sushi, hakka noodles, wok-tossed curries, and ramen bowls in a space that’s packed with kitschy, colourful décor.  

At House No 10/66/01 (02), Svami Vivekananda Road, Panjim. Call 7620010732. Instagram

Mama Miso

Food at mama miso goa

That rare restaurant opening in South Goa, Mama Miso offers pan Asian fare. With indoor (with a view of the open kitchen), and outdoor seating on the grass, the menu here has Sushi, Honey & Chilli Crispy Lotus, Rock Shrimp Tempura, Korean Beef Bulgogi and cocktails made with Indian spirits like the agave-laden Tea-quila.

At Arossim. Call 0832-6994444. Instagram  

Kofuku

https://www.instagram.com/p/CaZEAvOJCdJ/

Another restaurant chain making its debut in Goa, Kofuku offers Japanese and Korean food. On the menu are tempura dishes, katsu, gyoza, steak, teriyaki, donburi, ramen, sushi, soba noodles, and curries. Pair these with sake and in-house cocktails.

Opposite Emerald Lawns, Parra Saligao Road. Timing: 12pm to 3pm, 6pm to 11.30 pm. Call 9579221735. Instagram  

Oh La La, Siolim

Oh la la siolim

Located along the backwaters of Siolim, this new restaurant and lounge has wooden verandahs, a thatched bamboo roof, cane lamps, starfish wall hangings, and dining cabanas surrounded by coconut groves. The menu showcases slow cooking, clean ingredients and local produce, and offers pizzas, pastas, burgers, tacos and wraps. The bar menu has classics and a fun gin selection of cocktails.

At Siolim. Timing: 11am to 11pm. Call 8007499399. Instagram

Raki, Panjim

Raki goa

This rooftop lounge sits high at Crescent Hotel offering a view of the Mandovi River. Run by Rakshay Dhariwal from Passcode Hospitality, Chef Rahul Gomes and Sahana Kumar Monserrate, the focus is on modern Middle Eastern cuisine. Try their Mediterranean mezze especially the beet burani, muttabal, and hummus Raki; Habibi Prawns, Za’tar Chicken and a cocktail made using the in-house agave spirit, Pistola spiked with wasabi.

At Crescent Hotel. Timing: 5 pm to 1 am. Instagram

Segundo Bairro

The new restaurant means Second Neighbourhood and aims to be a ‘cosy, easy-on-the-pocket place where people can wine, dine and socialize’. The two chefs are Goan and cook up popular dishes like pork assado, vindaloo, crab xec xec, potato chops, cutlet bread and more. Their thalis are popular with the lunchtime crowd. In addition, they have some Chindian dishes. There are no cocktails here but there’s alcohol served at nominal rates.

At Old St. Cruz-Panjim Highway, near Football Ground, Santa Cruz. Timing: 11 am to 11 pm. Call 9699983863. Facebook

Soul Fry, Baga

Mumbai’s famous Goan and coastal restaurant has set up shop in Baga offering local beer, the famous Sungta Maria (prawns on toast), and karaoke sessions and live music. Located at what was once Baga Beer Garden, there is an enclosed AC section dedicated to live perfromances. Try their Dakshin Fry Prawns, Calamari Tonne Mirsang, and Coorgi Pork.

At Milkyway, 181B, Khobra Waddo, Calangute. Instagram

Totem, Ashvem

Food at totem goa

Launched by polo player Rinaa Shah, Totem restaurant and bar is spread over 6000 sq ft. The theme is ‘modern tribal’. There’s a 40-ft bar serving crafted tequila and gin cocktails; customers can also make their own. The food is global and includes salads, tacos and small plates. Look out for live music.

Asvewada Ashwem, Mandrem Road, opp. Jamboree Creek Yoga, next to Stonewood Resort. Timing: 12 noon to 10.30 pm. Call 87938 68232. Instagram

Suggested read: Ping for good food!

Vida

The newest restaurant from the team behind Petisco and Café Tato, Vida serves familiar and innovative takes on Goan/Indian food. Think Tambdi Bhaji samosas, Bharilli keli (Moira bananas with green chutney), Kangachyo Nevryo (sweet potato karanji), besides the staple Chicken Cafreal and Tisryo Sukhe. On Sundays, there is live music.

At Margao. Call 9307402992. Instagram

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