Being the #1 restaurant on trip advisor at the time of writing this review, we wanted to know what the fuss was all about, so we reserved a table for 2. We arrived in a nice looking square room, with a rustic wooden ceiling and walls made out of lava stone. We were politely greeted and seated. Our waiter offered Madeira wine as an aperitif. We also ordered a bottle of water. When I asked what kinds they had, he replied ‘they are all the same’. Knowing my wines (we also just had a tour at a main Madeira wine company), I smiled and said ‘that’s not true.’ To which he replied ‘yes it is.’ The bread served with aperitif was delicious! We ordered a set 3 course menu with a matching selection of wines. As starters, we had tempura squid and tuna carpaccio. I found the squid to be chewy and fried. It was not what I would expect from a tempura squid. The tuna carpaccio was OK, but was marinated with, in my opinion, way too much lemon. Which spoiled the taste and made it look greenish/grey. The wine choice was interesting and went well with the dishes. As our main course we had tuna steak and squid respectively. The squid was chewy and cold. In our home town (Amsterdam) I would have accepted chewy squid both as starter and as main course. Yet, in Funchal I expect fresh squid, plus, I’ve had better at cheaper restaurants. After pointing out that the squid was cold and chewy, we were offered an excuse and they replaced the dish with a warm and much tastier version. This time, the plate was also warm which is in my opinion a basic requirement. The tuna steak was great. They served a dry-ish red wine with tanins with it, which was a very bad combination with both dishes. After pointing this out, we were served a much better young red wine with it. As desserts we had crème brulee and panacotta. The crème brulee was delicious. Obviously made with fresh ingredients. Some of the better ones I’ve tasted. The panacotta was also good. We were served a sweet Madeira wine with the desserts. I found this a very bad combination with the subtle flavours and different mouth feel of the panacotta. We constantly had to ask the waiters to refill our water, which was kept on a different table. When we left, we noticed that our bottle was still half-full, while we paid for full bottle and we were thirsty! If the restaurant had been full, I could have accepted this. However, it was only filled for about 1/3. All in all, this was a disappointment for us, even after we adjusted our high expectations downwards soon after we were seated.
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.