Como amante de uma Lisboa que vai desaparecendo sou suspeita, porque um dos símbolos da história da sua restauração são os balcões. E numa cidade que está cada vez mais longe do seu ADN lisboeta, de um postal que era tão nosso e tão único, nesta nova versão do Mundo que também tem coisas boas, entrar no Brilhante é uma bolha revivalista.
Uma bolha das minhas melhores memórias dos tempos em que me senti profundamente inspirada pela nossa cidade. E no Brilhante tudo começou pelo espaço. Em tons quentes de lacre, carmim e sangue de boi, o balção central enaltece-se em osmose com a cozinha, abraçando as mesas a toda à volta, que numa atmosfera intimista, não podem ser mais indicadas para estes dias de Outono.
A carta orquestrada pelo chef residente, Tiago Ribeiro, é bastante revivalista e completa, e para isso deixarei as imagens falarem por mim. Recomendo vivamente os ‘Croquetes de Novilho com seleção de mostardas’, o ‘Caviar Oscietra com blinis’ e o “Bife à Marrare” que pode ter três extras, ovo estrelado, escalope de Foi Grasou ou lavagante. Do que provei achei tudo muito bem executado, com grande elogio ao puré de batatada trufado que escolhi para acompanhar o bife.
Nas sobremesas, com execução da chef de pastelaria residente, Ângela Granho, e sob a alçada do meu querido e amigo chef Claiton Ferreira, chef executivo de pastelaria do grupo Plateform, destaco o Soufflé de Avelãs de Piemonte e Chocolate e Tarte de Morango e Ruibarbo. Sugiro até a pedir os dois, porque as sobremesas do Chef Claiton assim o exigem, de tão extraordinárias. Atrevo-me a dizer que são duas das minhas preferidas de Lisboa.
As a lover of a Lisbon that is disappearing, one of the symbols of its restaurant history is the balconies. And in a city that is moving further and further away from its Lisbon DNA, from a postcard that was so ours and so unique, in this new version of the World that also has good things, entering Brilhante is a revivalist bubble.
A bubble of my best memories of the times when I felt deeply inspired by our city. And at Brilhante it all started with space. In warm tones of lacquer, crimson and oxblood, the central counter stands out in osmosis with the kitchen, embracing the tables all around, which, in an intimate atmosphere, couldn’t be more appropriate for these autumn days.
The star of the menu, orchestrated with the seal of chef Luis Gaspar, is the Bife à Brilhante, a dish inspired by the Lisbon classic Bife à Marrare, a speciality eternalised in the famous 19th century cafés, and which now comes with a recipe perfected by the chef and his team. “The recipe, inspired by the original, has a different personality, essentially in the sauce”, a secret of flavour and technique that is said to be one of the restaurant’s treasures.
Following the same classic line of a Lisbon of good conversations and vintage gatherings, Brilhante’s bar presents, among many options, more than sixty whisky references, from all corners of the world, that pay homage to the classic cocktelaria of the 19th century, when the concept of this restaurant also began to establish itself in Lisbon. The Plateform group’s well-known executive bar chef, Fernão Gonçalves, and resident bar chef, Luís Fonseca, chose an Old Fashioned, made with Bourbon Whisky, Bitters and Sugar, to open the cloths. I loved the experience and the cocktails were second to none, as is already a hallmark of the restaurants run by the group of unstoppable entrepreneurs Margarida and Rui Sanches.
The menu, orchestrated by resident chef Tiago Ribeiro, is very revivalist and complete, so I’ll let the pictures speak for themselves. I highly recommend the ‘Veal Croquettes with a selection of mustards’, the ‘Oscietra Caviar with blinis’ and the ‘Marrare Steak’ which can have three extras, fried egg, Foi Grasou escalope or lobster. From what I tasted, I thought everything was very well done, with great praise for the truffled mashed potato I chose to accompany the steak.
For desserts, made by our resident pastry chef, Ângela Granho, and under the guidance of my dear friend Chef Claiton Ferreira, executive pastry chef for the Plateform group, I would highlight the ‘Piedmont Hazelnut and Chocolate Soufflé’ and the ‘Strawberry and Rhubarb Tart’. I even suggest ordering both, because Chef Claiton’s desserts are so extraordinary. I dare say they are two of my favourites in Lisbon.
Brilhante has been open for a year now, but I’m sharing with you in these lines the renewal of some of the dishes and the creation of a lunch menu, which is making it a great option for many business lunches. Because I know I’ve always lived out of my own time, of course I feel like a fish in water at Brilhante. I loved the experience, the atmosphere, the team’s mastery of ceremonies and the revival of memories, where they still breathe a Mr Brito at the counter of a Gambrinus (which is no longer the same). Still a Galetto after the cinema as a child or memories of the steaks at the Cervejaria Alemã in Rua do Alecrim, where I used to go every week with my parents as a teenager. Lisbon is very different, and if we all have our doubts in the foam of the days, Brilhante is clearly a project that doesn’t hurt the city’s DNA, and for that reason alone it has become one of my top choices during the autumn and cold winter seasons. A classic not to be missed in Lisbon.