Faro’s emblematic Adão café has reopened at the Eva Senses Hotel as a restaurant specialising in poke, a Hawaiian dish described as a “healthier, deconstructed sushi” by the establishment’s new owner.
While pokes have become trendy food in Lisbon, there wasn’t a single eatery specialising in pokes in the Algarve before Adão opened on June 15.
“I am in love with the concept,” Adão owner Miguel Gião told Barlavento newspaper.
“We wanted to create something very local, healthy and ‘Instagramable’, because that is what people want,” he said about his new establishment, which had previously been known for its delicious pastries.
Pokes are made with diced raw fish and are one of the main dishes of Native Hawaiian cuisine.
“When fishermen would return from the sea, they would marinate the fish in a soy, vinegar and sesame-based sauce to preserve it before serving it with fruits and seaweed,” Gião explained.
At Adão, pokes are made with fresh fish or seafood directly from Ria Formosa. Clients can choose from shrimp, ‘lingueirão’ (razor fish clams), muxama (a kind of tuna ham), salmon, tuna or vegetarian pokes, each costing between €11 and 15.
There is also the best-seller Adão poke, a spicier version made with tuna, salmon, shrimp, jalapenos and red onion, as well as four varieties of the Peruvian delicacy known as ceviche and three kinds of tacos.
For starters, customers can choose from soups, oysters, vegetable strips with hummus and a ‘muxama’ carpaccio. There is also a dessert menu headlined by a banoffee pie and a red berry pavlova, as well as an extensive list of fresh juices.
All dishes are made with local ingredients purchased daily. According to the owner, the secret to making the food delicious is the freshness of the product itself.
Opening in the midst of a pandemic wasn’t easy, he said, adding that the key to staying afloat during these difficult times is the ability to “reinvent ourselves”.
“We are expecting to have three straight low seasons this year,” said Gião, who owns two other businesses in Faro. “Our invoicing in June was the same as it was in January. We are hoping the next three months will bring some oxygen to the region.”
The good news is that Adão has been completely booked for dinner almost every night since it opened. “There aren’t any tourists, it’s just residents,” he said.
Adão is open every day from midday to 11pm. It has 20 indoor seats and 18 at the outdoor terrace. Reservations are accepted by telephone.
+351 916 732 015.