Text Marita van Rooyen
Where and when
Opened in May 2011, Paguel Restaurant is located in northern Independence Avenue (at number 416) in Windhoek. The restaurant is open seven days a week from 12:00 until late. The kitchen closes at 23:00. +264 61 24 0786
The Peri-Peri Chicken will give you a soft introduction to Portuguese cuisine. Succulent and saucy, this spicy chicken has a bit of a bite, but fortunately you can ask the chefs to tweak your level of hotness. Waiter Gylson Domingos likes his real hot.
“We are 100% pure Portuguese,” says owner Miguel Pinguinhas proudly. In the short time since it opened, Paguel Restaurant has already become a favourite with locals and visitors to Windhoek’s eating scene. With three distinct areas, the restaurant offers privacy for families and business associates, a social section for sports fans, and an exclusive upstairs lounge. Between the red-and-green tables, there are couches for chilling, and an outside fireplace for romantic stargazing evenings.
The Tasca, or tavern, is where you’ll find truly Portuguese tapas foods such as oxtail stew, codfish patanisca with beans and rice, tasca tripe stew, and chorizo with boiled egg in tomato and onion sauce with tasca pap. Here the most popular meal choices seem to be the all-time favourite prego roll, peri-peri chicken, and green cabbage soup. A great selection of caipirinhas, cocktails, sangrias and the Angolan special, catemba (a mixture of red wine and coca-cola), is also available to lighten the mood.
Barman Jooste Muundjua shows off with his self-concocted Tasca cocktail – a potent mix of vodka, Malibu, blue Curacao, lime and grenadine. Give it a try if you’re in a party mood, or if the peri-peri power hasn’t driven you over the edge yet. Here, the inside fireplace is lit on colder evenings, with large flat-screen televisions displaying the latest sport highlights.
In the restaurant, on the other hand, hungry eaters seem to favour the Argentinean mixed grill – a combination of chorizo, morcilla (black pudding), kidneys, rump, sirloin, sweet bread, lamb and pork. Argentinean chef Miguel Ascua runs the kitchen, accompanied by his Mozambican assistant, Skaype Dickson Javier. Other speciality dishes from the Paguel pots include duck rice, pork cubes with clams, chacuti (duck curry), codfish, shellfish, and game… the mouth-watering list really is endless.
The Oyster Lounge is where you can kick off your shoes and get comfy with a large plate of home-grown Namibian aphrodisiac fare and a bottle of decent wine. “Relax in the informal ambience where you can enjoy oysters the way you like them most: au naturel, gratinée, or with caviar.”
Whatever your preference, Paguel has a mouth-watering dish for every taste, in authentic Portuguese style. There’s a reason why Paguel concludes its welcome with conte connosco – you can count on us – to add oomph to your meal. Book a table, and bring family and friends along!