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Pia Mileaf-Patel

            Over winter break, I traveled with my family to India, where my dad had been working last year. We were lucky to get a lot of suggestions about what to do by his friends, and especially luckily for me, his friends are serious foodies.

            Some of my favorite meals were in Goa, in South India by the beach. Goa has a Portuguese Catholic population, which influences some of the food. For example, Goan bread is like puffier Portuguese buns and is best enjoyed (in my opinion) with guava juice and fresh papaya.

            My favorite meals in Goa were at Anand, where we had delicious Goan fish curry and fried prawns on Christmas Eve, and at Bomra’s, where we ate my favorite meal of the entire trip (narrowly beating Gujarati thali at Shree Thaker Bhojanalay in Bombay, a dreamlike experience where we got to try 9 types of bread made from different grains, and everything was made a little bit more delicious by a teaspoon of ghee drizzled on top).

            Open for 7 months and closed for 5 (for monsoon season), Bomra’s has quite seriously some of the best food I’ve eaten in my life. The menu is Burmese-inspired, with items like crispy pork and pomegranate salad, and ginger lemongrass crème brulee—a dessert I will try to recreate, but will never be able to make it taste like it does at Bomra’s without such fresh lemongrass, or such a great atmosphere!

            We enjoyed a long lunch in the calm patio-restaurant, sectioned off from the busy street by a tall fence. It is sort of hidden, and the website suggests to call for directions. The garden is breezy and festive, and families were eating lunch when a white cow walked through the gate and sort of hung around the front for a minute or two, before she got shooed away.

            Our meal was long and leisurely and everything you could hope for. It is the kind of restaurant that if I lived in Goa, I would want to eat there for every special occasion. Each dish was better than the last—and that’s saying a lot, since the first dish of melt-in-your-mouth homemade tofu and vegetable/herb tempura (with a crisp-to-perfection batter and diversity of flavors) was a hard act to follow, but then came the chili crab, and garlicky coconut rice, and coconut panna cotta.

            In the photos below, you can find everything that we ate, but I can say surely that I loved each and every dish—I doubt you can go wrong. I brought home with me some postcards from Bomra’s to look at when I want to go back to India, and back to my favorite meal.