The article also highlights the crusty bread and the aged butter inspired by the chef’s memories of his grandmother:
“My grandmother kept the butter out,” Pedro Pena Bastos explains. “After three or four days, it started to have a cheesy flavour. That fascinated me as a boy. My goal was to replicate it.”
“I have been following what this young chef has been doing, ever since he moved to the Alentejo, a year and a half ago (…) Before Esporão, Pedro worked at top restaurants like Belcanto (Lisbon) or the Ledbury (London) – both with 2 Michelin stars – as well as a brief stint at Grémio Literário (as head chef) and one of his own projects, A Revolta do Palato, which was a type of “home chef” company that he and Teresa founded.”
“It’s true that, sometimes, looks can be deceiving and what appears attractive is disappointing when tasted. However, when a week or so ago I headed south, I had a feeling I was on the right track.”
Describing the meal, Miguel Pires begins by highlighting the bread and the “incredible” aged butter, just like the article in Food Republic. From the butter to the dishes, expectation was met and there was no lack of praise for the chef. “He demonstrates a maturity and confidence that is rare for a chef as young as 25. His cuisine is not disruptive, nor does it have to be – because Esporão is not exactly an underground wine producer. That said, his dishes demonstrate creativity, boldness, sensitivity and depth of flavour and, with all this combined, what remains is a harmony that almost always boasts a challenging touch”.
Read the articles here:
‘Uma das Refeições do Ano no Esporão. Fixem este nome, ele vai dar que falar: Pedro Pena Bastos‘, by Miguel Pires, at Mesa Marcada