Macau is not one of those places you head to unless you're a fan of the vices, and of course, gaming is a great revenue generator, surpassing even Las Vegas at last count. To attract non-gamers, the Macau government has spared no effort in bringing music stars for concerts, Cirque de Soleil, and of course, I am there again this year to watch Mr. Roger Federer, this time accompanied by James Blake, Bjorn Borg and John McEnroe.
Another highlight of Macau is of course, Macanese food, which is heavily influenced by Portuguese cuisine, having been a Portuguese settlement up until 1999, when it became a special administrative region of China.
Restaurante Litoral aptly describes Macanese food as the original "fusion" food, a blend of East and West with many recipes handed down through the generations. Sitting in a cosily decorated restaurant with wooden beam ceilings, old-fashioned blue-and-white tiles, you would not be blamed for thinking you were in a restaurant in Portugal.
Having lived in Hong Kong for a while, I have grown to like Baked Pork Chops with Rice, a cha chan teng staple. Its origins are Macanese and the best I've had is at Restaurante Litoral. I like my rice and the rice at Litoral is immaculately coated through stir frying, the tomato paste and therefore fragrant. The pork chops are also perfectly crumb-coated before being deep fried. All this topped with a layer of tomato based sauce, is baked in the oven, prior to serving. YUMS!
Other goodies on offer were the: prawn bisque served in a bread bowl..
.. and grilled sardines, which retain its freshness, through a quick grilling process, and served simply drizzled wtih olive oil.
To round off, the coconut egg custard, with its topped, slightly charred from a blowtorch was perfect - fragrant, and surprisingly, light.
One of those "go back in time" meals always worth going to if you are going to be in Macau looking for good food.