O Lavrador

O Lavrador is Portuguese for "the farmer." At first it struck me as ironic that there is a giant SEAFOOD sign high up on the building. Then I thought that in Portugal you're really never that far from the ocean. The country is long north to south, and narrow east to west, with the Atlantic all along the western and southern coasts. You can drive the entire geography, north to south in a day, and east to west in a few hours. So, I thought, of course the farmer has seafood!

broa, which is a Portuguese corn bread, and then there was some kind of onion roll that they must have gotten during a trip to the local supermarket. It tasted like an everything bagel - possibly the worst bread product on Earth. I immediately knew that I could not dip this bread into my piri piri sauce, if there was piri piri sauce to be dipped into. So, I ate the corn bread, drank my beer and waited.

Camarão ao Piri Piri

Scoville scale. I took the lemon wedge-a tiny sliver of a lemon wedge-and squeezed some juice over the shrimp. Generally, an acid livens up the flavors. Portuguese often sprinkle some lemon juice, even vinegar, on certain foods for this purpose. And you know what, the shrimp got better, The sauce was detectable and in the end, it wasn't all that bad. Though, it still remained obvious that the shrimp had previously been frozen... for some time. When I finished, I just could not resist the urge, took that onion everything thing, ripped the top off and dipped the plain bottom into the sauce. Not bad. It was just that the shrimp couldn't carry enough of the sauce with itself into my mouth for me to get a good taste of it. I grabbed a spoon and tasted more. Yeah, not bad. Sweet, slightly "spicy", a little "ketchupy".

Catch of the Day - Mediterranean Sea Bass

Serradura, which translates into English as saw dust. It's basically a layered dessert of chilled sweet cream and what we called as kids, "blacha Maria" - Maria cookies. If you've never had Maria cookies, the closest thing I can think of are Nilla Wafers. The size of the Maria cookie is much thinner and much larger, but flavor is close. As a child, blacha Maria with tea (milk always in the tea) was the breakfast my mother most often prepare for me. Mmmm, that's another good memory. Anway, so, out came the Serradura and I ate it in about 30 seconds. Yes, of course, it was good. Super simple, nothing special, but good just the same.

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O Lavrador

13840 101st Avenue
Jamaica Queens NY 11435
(718) 526-1526
www.olavradorrestaurant.com

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