Author Archives: goantolondon

About goantolondon

International food and travel blog by London based British Goan duo: Jason and Chiara Pinto. Twitter: @goantolondon @jasonpinto100 @chiarapinto About Goa: Goa is a small state on the western coast of India. Though the smallest Indian state, Goa has played an influential role in Indian history. Goa was one of the major trade centers in India, thus it had always been attracting the influential dynasties, seafarers, merchants, traders, monks and missionaries since its earliest known history. Throughout its history Goa has undergone continual transformation, leaving an indelible impression on various aspects of its cultural and socio-economic development. History of Goa: The East-West symbiosis of Goa makes it different from other parts of India, more than the historical and social niche. The history of Goa is a sweet and sour story of colonial heritage, oppressive rulers, a glorious culture, and uneventful immediate past. As a land with the identity of its own, Goa was brought into focus when it was liberated of Portugal from its oppressive rule of around 450 hundred years in 1961. Goa was captured and annexed to the Portuguese in 1510 following the urges of trade and demand of spices and also cottons and indigo. But, Goa has a history that starts much before Portugal even thought of Goa being where it is. Goa was coveted and ruled by a great number of Indian kingdoms and dynasties from the 4th century onwards. The first kingdom to rule Goa and Konkan were Bhojas, who were the feudatories of Ashoka in 4th and 5th centuries AD. The city of Chandrapur (present Chandor) was founded by Prince Chandraditya, son of Chalukya King Pulakesin from 566 to 597 A.D. after this, Goa was ruled consecutively by Silahara Dynasty, Kadamba Danasty, and finally Hoysalas from 1022 to 1342 A.D. From the 14th century onwards, Goa became a great trading center on the west coast, especially in the vast trade of horses imported from the Middle East. This was the time for bigger empires to move in and Vijayanagar Empire conquered it in 1344. But there empire was not going to last too long and in 1347, Bahmani Sultans defeated Vijayanagara forces in 1347 and controlled Goa. Afterwards, it was a time of great prosperity and peace for Gpa, especially during the rules of Yusuf Adil Shah and Ismail Adil Shah. They created beautiful houses, fortified Goa, and encouraged local craftsmen. Their liberal and progressive rule was not going to last too long and situation changed in 1510 A.D. Goa for all purposes was not on the Portuguese Radar even after a long time of their presence in India. When the Portuguese nobleman Alfonso de Albuquerque and his cousin Francisco de Albuquerque were sent with a powerful fleet in 1503 on the orders of King Dom Manuel I, the purpose was to defend the cargoes of spices, mostly pepper, against Arab Muslim raiders. The center of spice trade was Calicut at that time and Portuguese had built forts in Cochin and Cannanore. It was in 1506-08 that an opportunistic pirate, Timoja, persuaded Albuquerque to attack Goa and acquire a better land base. This made Goa, Portugal's first real territorial acquisition in Asia. After a brief period of recapturing by the Muslims, Goa Albuquerque finally captured Goa in 1510. The inquisition of Goa in 1540 reversed the previous liberal policy of Albuquerque and imposed strict censorship of literature and new laws to forbade non-Christians from professions. Forced conversions took place continuously, censorship was established on literature, the temples were destroyed, and non-Christian priests, holy men, and teachers were evicted. This led to continuous fleeing of Hindus from Goa to other parts of India. It is not that the relationship with Portugal brought only destruction for the Goans. Portuguese also built great churches like the church of St. Cajetan and Bom Jesus basilica in Old Goa, which is a pilgrimage site for the Christians from around the world. But it is also true that pre-1961; Goa was a highly impoverished region very backward and primitive. It is after the liberation that Goa of today has emerged and it has surprised even the locals many of whom had left their homeland before its liberation. Portugal and India are today friends and Goa continues to be a fascinating blend of Latin and Oriental. Information sourced from:

A relaxing beach holiday in Calabria, Italy!

We needed a relaxing beach holiday away from the regular tourist spots, and so decided on a lesser known location of Zambrone in Calabria – a beach vacation hotspot for the Italians! After a lot of research and discussions, we … Continue reading

Posted in Bars, BBQ, Calabria, cocktails, Coffee, Gift ideas, Holiday Ideas, Italian, Italy, italy, Meat, menus and prices, seafood, wineries | Tagged , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , | 1 Comment


A surprising restaurant to be vegan in? Jerkmaica, Finsbury Park When I say jerk what do you think of? Hot spicy meat right? Well you can get that at Jerkmaica no doubt but what might surprise you is that … Continue reading

Posted in Andrea San Pedro PR, Caribbean, Finsbury Park, Jerkmaica, Meat, seafood | Tagged , , , , , , | Leave a comment

Happy New Year for 2018 to you all!

Seasons Greetings and an early Happy New Year for 2018 to you all!!! Hope you have enjoyed our blog posts and social media coverage of different travel locations, restaurants and various events over the last year. Great also seeing familiar … Continue reading

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The awesome Elmore Jam’s Italian supperclub at Spianata Bakery, London Bridge! … Have you got your tickets for this weekend?

We arrived at The Grub Club and The Elmore Jam’s Italian Supper Club at Spianata Bakery in More London. After a welcome Negroni, we settled down to sample an array of delightfully created dishes by a top Italian Chef  served … Continue reading

Posted in Alessandro Miroballo, Danilo Cortellini, Italian, Lantern Public Relations, London, London Bridge, menus and prices, seafood, supper club, supperclub, The Elmore Jam | Tagged , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , | Leave a comment

The surprising thing you should be pairing with your Comte cheese this Christmas (hint: its not chutney!)

  Its fruitcake! And if that sounds like we may have had a touch too much port already don’t knock it until you’ve tried it. The sweet, spiciness of the cake perfectly complements the richness of 24 month aged Comte. … Continue reading

Posted in #comté, Borough Market, cakes, cheese, chocolate, Desserts, France, French, Huddle PR, London, London Bridge, Megan Hallinan | Tagged , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , | Leave a comment

The best gelato outside Italy!

We went to Prime Gelato in Soho to try out Mirko’s range of proper Italian gelato. Mirko is from Italy originally and you can tell because so is everything else in his shop, from the Ferrari of ice cream … Continue reading

Posted in Exotic Fruits, FODMAP, FODMAP diet, Gelato, IBS friendly diet, Italian, London, Prime Gelato, Shaftesbury Avenue, Tottenham Court Road, use of modern ingredients | Tagged , , , , , , , , , , , , | Leave a comment

Learning to bake koláčes and the perfect drink pairing with Budweiser Budvar!

On a rainy midweek evening, what better way to cheer your spirits up than with … proper Czech lager and koláčes. Koláčes are traditional Czech delicacies that are a cross between pastries and the comforting inner hug you get from a … Continue reading

Posted in Amy Franklin PR, Baking events, Budweiser Budvar, Cakes, Czech, Drinks, London, Untold Agency | Tagged , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , | Leave a comment

Instant no cook satay sauce ft Lee Kum Kee, PipandNut+a secret ingredient

So it’s scenario I think we can all relate to. You’re back from holiday, you’re hungry, there’s nothing in the fridge and you’re too tired to go shopping. Previously I might have got a dirrrty Maccy D’s (other fast food … Continue reading

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Tacu Tacu Latin American in Hackney

Tacu Tacu is a Latin American restaurant that has opened up on Mare St where Rita’s used to be. The front is a bar serving dangerously drinkable cocktails such as the Pirates Pear, a combination of rum, pear nectar and … Continue reading

Posted in chocolate, cocktails, Hackney, Latin American, London, seafood, Tacu Tacu, Tacu Tacu Food | Tagged , , , , , , , , , | Leave a comment

UK RumFest 2017 is this weekend & win tickets for this weekend!

Rum parties are the best fun … View this post on Instagram Looking forward to @ukrumfest @dominouk #presspreview #evening at @londoncocktailclub #bethnalgreen ! A post shared by Jason & Chiara Pinto (@goantolondon) on Sep 27, 2017 at 11:02am PDT   … Continue reading

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