Margao is said to be the second largest city by population in Goa, and it is also the commercial and cultural capital of Goa. Apart from its Portuguese nuance and old city charm, people here believe in spreading love through their delicious food. Early evenings, one can hear the humming of regional tunes from the local street chefs in their food Gaddas (CART) as they prepare for the hungry crowd that only keeps gathering around more in the evenings.
The sound of the rawa covered succulent beef cutlets wriggling away and shrinking in size as they get well done, is just music to my ears. The combination of the crispy, crackling beef cutlets and the freshly baked, soft pao with a refreshing salsa is just a match made in heaven. The other delicacies include the much-loved ross omelet, chicken soup, beef soup and on special days even the Goan specialty of pork sorpotel, is also available in some of the Gaddas mentioned below.
The best part of these places is that the owners began from scratch and have made a name for themselves, maybe not in a very big way but in a way, they are satisfied with themselves and can take care of their families. As a cutlet pao lover myself, visiting these places was an incredible experience and here at Incredible Goa, we believe in sharing our experiences. So here is a list of places for you meat-lovers to go crazy.
1. ORLIM STEAK BREAD (Orlim)
Just as you cross the Orlim bridge, this small shack is the first sight you will see. The moment you set foot in there, you are welcomed with the lively smiles of Mr. Fernandes and his family. The next thing you know is that you are served with the most succulent and inviting cutlet pao. The minute you sink your teeth into the soft bread and the crispy beef, the flavors play tricks with your mind. The well-marinated meat is itself a flavor bomb that it doesn’t need any other partner. The master chefs behind these amazing delicacies are the super duo Mr. Fernandes and his better half Mrs. Maria Pereira. They started off this business in 2005 as a means to take care of their family. Their 4 children help them in any way that they can to keep the business running. They treat their customers in a very delightful manner which makes you feel at home, and the food just blows your mind.
2. EMY’S (Telaulim-Varca)
At the other end of the Telaulim-Varca bridge, you see Emy Fernandes busy at work trying to fill the tummies of hungry customers with her delectable cutlet pao. She handles the business by herself and is amazing at her job. The generous serving of the juicy, crispy beef cutlet in the traditional goan pao, with a refreshing salad and a tangy sauce, is the most extraordinary combination ever. The fresh air blowing lightly from over the river Sal accompanied with this mouth-watering snack is a match made in heaven! The beautiful Emy started this business with her husband since the working of the Telaulim-Varca bridge in 2011. Every evening, excluding on Fridays, there is a crowd gathering near the end of the bridge. Locals and also people who enjoy her food make a trip there. She also serves delicious fish cutlets and a very flavorsome beef soup. Emy’s bright smile and the appetizing food makes you want to go back for more.
3. GOAN FAST FOOD (Vaddi, Benaulim)
For all our beach and food lovers, we have yet another magician Fatima Fernandes who runs her own food truck near the Vaddi beach in Benaulim. Set with a perfect ambience of the beach, the sound of the waves and the wind in your hair together with the smell of the mouth-watering food can change you into the most relaxing mood instantly. She serves a whole long menu of delicacies, but the star of them being the cutlet bread. The juicy-mouthwatering meat is too delicious. She also serves samosas, ross omelette, traditional choris pao and a never-ending list of goan delicacies. Within a year of starting this business, Fatima says she is happy with her customers and is more than happy to welcome hungry customers. So if you want to have the perfect finish to an evening at the beach, try out some of Fatima’s toothsome delicacies. I guarantee that you won’t regret it.
4. ESPIRITO’S (Majorda)
Another cutlet bread hotspot lies in the narrow streets of Majorda. Espirito Fernandes has been running his little haven of delicacies for the last two years. Talk about street food, then this is the place to go. The mouth-watering snacks available here are just finger-lickin’-good! Apart from the chicken bread and the ross omelette available, the cutlet bread here is to die for. The all-time favorite combination of meat, salad, pao and their special sauce is extraordinary. The thing that separates Espirito’s from the others is that though they are not well established, but, they continue to feed their daily customers with a warm heart. So if you are looking for some home love along with palatable food, please do visit Espirito’s.
5. CAREY’S FAST FOOD (Calata, Majorda)
On your way to Majorda, there is no way that you could possibly miss Carey’s Fast Food truck, where you see Mr. Remedios busy at work. He puts all his dedication into serving his customers the best food they have ever eaten. He specialises in only the beef cutlet bread, and to be honest, it’s really really good. The Oh-so-good meat, tender and soft, crispy fried in rawa is so luscious. You’re bound to eat at least two or even take extra cutlets like me! Mr. Remedios began running this little place in 2006 and is at it ever since. It is not fancy, but at least you can eat to your heart’s content. So here’s another sensational hotspot for you to visit when you’re hungry and you happen to be around Majorda. Bon appétit!
TEXT & IMAGES: Heidi Fernandes