Best Piri Piri Chicken in the Algarve at Churrasquieira Valdemar, Silves

When you mention piri piri chicken to most people in the UK, they immediately think of Nandos: the South African powerhouse currently punting the Algarvian delicacy across Britain. I’ve been to Nandos loads of times; I mean it’s alright as far as fast food restaurants go, but that’s just it: a fast food restaurant.

I decided to go to the source of the piri piri, and visit a traditional churrasqueira (barbecue restaurant) while I was in the Algarve. I’m not talking about one of the restaurants punting grilled chicken in the center of seaside towns Albufeira and Lagos: nah, this one was in the quiet mountain town of Silves; the Moorish capital.

There are two things common sense tells us that a restaurant needs: a kitchen and a menu. Churrasquieira Valdemar has neither. There is simply a huge barbecue out front, where the chicken (and sometimes fish) is grilled. And who needs a menu? Our waiter simply asked if we wanted chicken, bread, chips, and salad. We said yes to all of them (the right answer) and they were brought out.  Drink menu: “beer or wine?”. Perfect. Stress free dining.

Unless you find the question “piri piri or plain?” difficult, of course.

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GUEST REVIEW: Spice Lounge Kitchen

Despite having my own food blog for almost a year now, I’m nowhere near as much of a foodie as my best buddy Euan. He knows all of the hot places for a tasty meal in Edinburgh, but try as I might I haven’t been able to get him on the blogging scene. Until now… he’s finally written me a guest blog for Spice Lounge Kitchen! Without further ado, here’s what Euan had to say… 

Spice Lounge Kitchen, 1 Craigmount View, Edinburgh, Scotland, EH12 8HG
0131 476 9999

Euan (with Sam)

All week I had been looking forward to visiting the new Spice Lounge Kitchen in Edinburgh. I really wanted to like it, I wanted to leave and tell everyone that “Spice Lounge was amazing”, “a gem”. Unfortunately, I can’t. Even in my jovial, ravenous mood I could not overlook the appalling service.

Our waiter was rude and we all felt incredibly rushed into making our order. We ordered popadoms and some drinks to try and get him to back off a bit! The popadoms arrived fairly quickly but with a minuscule amount of dips – the pots were so tiny the teaspoons barely fitted in!

When we made our order (a reasonable 10 minutes after arriving) we were shocked that even although all four of us had chosen different dishes, none of them were available! Rather than explaining, the waiter hurriedly wrote down a different dish for us whilst pointing it in the menu! We were all very confused. We asked him to give us 5 minutes to relook but group consensus was to jump ship. As the drinks hadn’t arrived after 15 minutes, we only had the popadoms to pay for. Again, we were appalled to read that four popadoms costed £3.95.

It was Friday night at 7.30pm,there was no excuses for not having all the dishes – the menu isn’t exactly extensive! We left the £3.95 (!!!) for our four popadoms on the table and drove down the road to Abida where we enjoyed a lovely meal with great service.

Only positive note is that the decor is quite nice, but not worth putting up with rude waiting staff for.

Thanks for that, Euan! And I look forward to the next guest review you write for me. Hopefully you’ll get past the popadoms 😉 

I’m baaack…

I know I’ve been a bad blogger recently. I’ve basically disappeared off the face of the Earth for the past few weeks, which isn’t a very cool thing to do. I’ll give you all the usual excuses that my life has been crazy hectic recently, and I’ve had loads to organise: the reason being that finally I’m going to live my dream of eating the world. 

No, not literally. That would be pretty yucky.

I’m going travelling. I’ve jacked in the 9-5 and finish up on the 19th July: just in time to watch my best friend getting married, and then off exploring.

At the moment the plan is to start off in France, where I’ll be until next April if all goes according to plan. There may be a wee road trip through Spain to Portugal at the end of August so we’ll see how that goes.

I’ll keep all of my Edinburgh restaurant reviews on here for your perusal, although the blog will have a far more international flavour once I bugger off to Europe. Hopefully I’ll be a better blogger once all this craziness dies down!