Litoral

(Last updated: February 16, 2024)

I hate to say it, but one of my favourite restaurants in Macau might be losing it.  A recent visit in September 2023 was so bad that I have to question whether Litoral is going the way of A Lorcha, as in overrated tourist trap living off what it did a decade ago.

I only hope against hope that their Macanese dishes are still as good as they were before, otherwise the restaurant will be completely gone.

First of all, the dishes were all brought out at once, which I absolutely detest, especially when the bill is well over $1000 Mops.  I didn’t come to one of the most beautiful and atmospheric restaurants in town to leave in an hour, and that’s doubly true when there’s a bottle of wine on the table.  Litoral has always been a special venue to me, and as such I expect courses to come out observing proper timing and flow, which shouldn’t be too difficult for staff to detect.  Hmm, they’re halfway through an appetizer so let’s slap down both mains is not something that should happen – ever.

Secondly, the red wine was served cold, a fact I didn’t notice until it was way too late.  I spent the whole of the meal hoping it would cool down, but it never really got down to room temperature.  So take note of that before ordering and definitely tell them you want it how 85% of the sane world enjoys it.

The worst issue though was that both mains were simply atrocious.  The lamb I had in there a decade ago was so good that it melted my face off, and I lived without one for six months.  Fast forward to 2023 and it was a travesty, a pathetic pedestrian serving of dry shrivelled meat.

Litoral Macau Grilled Lamb Chop
Grilled Lamb Chop ($200)

The Grilled Chicken was a little better, but not by much.  Parts of the bird were a little cold, while the vast majority was as dry as the Saudi sand.  Do you know what tourists eat when they don’t know any better??  Exactly, they eat THIS!

Litoral Macau grilled chicken
Grilled Chicken ($180)

The appetizers were both very good though, perhaps leaving some hope that all is not lost at Litoral.

Litoral Macau Shrimp Soup in Loaf
Shrimp Soup in Loaf ($85)

This awesome little shrimp soup prepared in soft bread was probably the highlight of the meal, while my mainland friend gushed over the codfish salad.

Litoral codfish salad
Codfish Salad ($158)

The codfish salad was one I enjoyed way back when as well, so I’m glad to see it’s still up to snuff.

***UPDATE***

Ladies and gentlemen, happy times are here again!

The Macanese food does appear to be as good as ever, in particular the African Chicken ($218) and Duck Rice ($168).  Both are staple dishes in many Portuguese restaurants around town and Litoral does them as well as anyone.

African Chicken at Litoral Macau
African Chicken
Duck Rice at Litoral Macau
Duck Rice

Standards cannot have slipped with them for a simple reason: it’s impossible to slip from 5 stars!  Order both with confidence, just make sure to eat the chicken slow, since it’s full of all them little bones.

The Seafood Rice ($238) is plenty masterful as well, and another 4.5 or 5 star dish, especially when you factor in the price.  This bad boy usually goes for $300 or $400 in other joints, but Litoral cuts patrons a break, serving a big soupy broth infused behemoth jammed packed with clams, shrimp, oysters and chunks of fresh fish.

Seafood Rice at Litoral Macau
Seafood Rice

If I could propose to that picture I would, since it’s showered in so much sweet succulent love.  In fact, they should probably replace the lotus flower on the Macau flag with a bowl of seafood rice, since it feels a lot more representative of the city.  While Portuguese wine smells like Macau, and is Macau, seafood rice tastes like it!

A further two dishes were also decidedly delicious, but I can’t recommend either, strictly out of price concerns.  The Stuffed Suckling Pig “Litoral Style” ($300) made the taste buds sing, but the wallet hurt in gross disproportionate ways.  They need to serve twice the meat to justify the price, rather than try to window dress it up with weak sides of rice and fries.

Stuffed Suckling Pig "Litoral Style" at Litoral
Stuffed Suckling Pig “Litoral Style”

As for the Minchi ($148), any cafe in town serves it just as well as Litoral, and only charges $60 or $70 for the pleasure.

Minchi at Litoral
Minchi

Cozinha Aida has been my minchi go to for years, so definitely try it there, if possible.

***

Here’s what I wrote years before, when the restaurant still clearly had it with every dish.  Please note that most of the selections I enjoyed back then were Macanese favourites, and they’re the ones that still seem to be great today.

Litoral is a magnificent restaurant located near the Maritime Museum and the Inner Harbour.

For details of my dinner there, please follow the link to Trip Report I.

Litoral Macau

In subsequent visits, I’ve also tried their Garlic Shrimp ($98), Clams ($150), Curry Shrimp with Crab Meat ($168), and Pork with Shrimp Paste ($170).

Litoral Macau garlic shrimp
Garlic Shrimp
Litoral Macau clams
Clams
Litoral Macau curry shrimp with crab meat
Curry Shrimp with Crab Meat
Litoral Macau pork with shrimp paste
Pork with Shrimp Paste

As expected, they’re all top shelf.

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