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:

Tapas Brindisa Shoreditch

We went to the relaunch of Tapas Brindisa Shoreditch (formerly known as Brindisa Tramontana). They’ve changed the restaurant to make it an all-day environment, building in extra power points for lap tops during the day and creating an open kitchen … Continue reading

Posted in Brindisa Tapas Kitchens, Brindisa Tramontana, England, London, Meat, menus and prices, Pork, seafood, Shoreditch High Street, Spanish | Tagged , , , , , , , , , | 2 Comments

An evening of gelato tasting at Marine Ices, Camden!

On a bright summer’s evening, we headed off to Camden for a gelato tasting session at Marine Ices. Love the wisteria, especially when it is in full bloom! After a warm welcome from Eddie and Kitty, we settled down with … Continue reading

Posted in Afternoon Tea, brownies, Camden, chocolate, Coffee, Desserts, England, Family-run restaurants, Food Safari ideas, Gelato, Gift ideas, Honey, London, Marine Ices, menus and prices, present ideas, Trapeze Media | Tagged , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , | Leave a comment

Vital Ingredient- salad strikes back!

Looking forward to #healthyfood #treats from @vitalingredient @VitalEatYourWay ! #cullumstreet #london A post shared by Jason & Chiara Pinto (@goantolondon) on Sep 15, 2016 at 1:27pm PDT #healthylivinglondon #healthyfood @vitalingredient #GoldenSquare #cullumstreet @VitalEatYourWay A post shared by Jason & Chiara … Continue reading

Posted in Amy Franklin PR, Bank, England, FODMAP, FODMAP diet, Global inspirations, Health Foods, IBS friendly diet, London, Meat, menus and prices, use of modern ingredients, Vital Ingredient | Tagged , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , | Leave a comment

Barraka- Mediterranean and Moroccan flavours in Spitalfields!

We went along to check out Barraka, bringing the vibrant flavours of their Mediterranean – Moroccan homeland to Spitalfields. Trying out the signature chicken schnitzel and the Mediterranean chicken, accompanied by white and red wine, and the owner Uri and … Continue reading

Posted in Apps to make your life easier!, Barraka, BBQ, Beef, Liverpool Street, Mediterranean, menus and prices, Moroccan, Pork, Spitalfields, WhichitPro | Tagged , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , | Leave a comment

Fat Papaya- Fresh funky Indian, Wembley

We were invited to review Fat Papaya. The restaurant has a colourful interior and I think the cheerful emoji-like Fat Papaya character will really appeal to kids. We love their selection of favourite classics too! Their head chef Silva and … Continue reading

Posted in chillies, cocktails, Desserts, England, Family-run restaurants, Fat Papaya, Fat Papaya, Fat Papaya - Social Media, Food Safari ideas, Global inspirations, Indian, Indian, London, menus and prices, PR and Marketing, Salmon, Style of cooking, Wembley, Wembley Central, whisky | Tagged , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , | Leave a comment

Planning a trip to Naples, Italy?

If you are planning a trip to Naples, Italy, as one of my friend’s is, then check out these useful websites: Naples – The Castel Nuovo or Maschio Angioino Photo credit: The above photos are courtesy of … Continue reading

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Creole Kitchen at tiki paradise The Beachcomber Bar, Bayswater!

We trekked across town to Bayswater to check out the pop up in The Beachcomber Bar by Creole Kitchen chef and cookery writer Vanessa Bolosier. We kicked off with plantain chips, plus bokit (spiced dough) and saltfish fritters served with … Continue reading

Posted in Bayswater, Caribbean, Creole Kitchen at The Beachcomber, England, Find Your Feet, fusion cuisine, Global inspirations, London, Market Fresh Communications, saltfish, Selina Periampillai, Style of cooking | Tagged , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , | Leave a comment

Celia – the delicious gluten free Czech lager!

We went to the launch of Celia, a gluten free Czech produced lager, at ‘Smiths’ of Smithfield in the pleasant environ of Smithfield Market. A bright, airy space with a fully kitted out ‘Celia’ bar greeted us on the first … Continue reading

Posted in 'Smiths' fo Smithfield, CCD PR, Celia Lager, Czech, England, FODMAP, FODMAP diet, Gluten-Free, IBS friendly diet, Kitch Media, London, menus and prices, Modern British, Smithfield market | Tagged , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , | Leave a comment

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 , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , | Leave a comment