Eleven Restaurant is a project created by eleven friends, including the restaurant’s chef. Since opening in November 2003, almost ten years ago, this venue has been known as one of Lisbon’s trendiest eateries. The menu offers a fresh and vibrant array of Mediterranean and Portuguese cuisine created with an emphasis on seasonal ingredients.
Perched at the top of a huge hill overlooking expansive lush green gardens, the restaurant has a superior view of the Portuguese capital. The large windows ensure the dining room is bright and airy for the guests, a feature I appreciated as I always like to be able to see what I am eating. Diners can look over the whole of Lisbon, benefitting from the exuberant natural light outside.
Joachim Koerper is a creative chef with ample experience to head up any restaurant. After working in prestigious French and Spanish kitchens he brings a wealth of knowledge to the Eleven Restaurant.
It is a simply designed building, with plenty of space for large groups and parties. Upstairs there is room for private occasions and in the hall an impressive bookshelf is stacked with all the Michelin restaurant guides since 1903, a reminder of the lost star at this eatery.
During the week there is a reasonably priced express lunch menu, but we chose from the varied a la carte. After a lovely glass of Portuguese sparkling wine the meal commenced, a mix of fish, meat and vegetable dishes. The most memorable starter was the hot and cheesy risotto with Scallops. A creamy and comforting bowl that was surprisingly light and addictively delicious.
The pick of the mains was the Roast Lobster with soft polenta and green vegetables. Perfectly cooked and seasoned, it was a lovely special dish. My lamb with rosemary had a pleasant flavour but was rather dry and chewy.
Before rejoining the bustle of the city, we scoffed some puddings. I chose the selection of miniatures allowing us to taste all the options on the menu. A crème brulee roll (!) and a refreshing boule of coconut ice-cream with spun sugar were the two highlights.
Out of the main city centre this restaurant’s location is both a help and a hindrance to its popularity but it is perfect for groups or those wishing to enjoy a calm and refined meal whilst watching over Lisbon.
More information here.