Bringing Iberian Food To Queens

23 Restaurant

O Lavrador Restaurant and Bar
138-40 101st Ave., Jamaica
( 718) 526-1526
olavradorrestaurant.com
Hours: Sunday-Thursday 11:30 a.m – 10 p.m. Friday and Saturday: 11:30 a.m. – 11 p.m.
Cuisine: Spanish and Portuguese
Credit Cards: Yes
Delivery: Yes
Take-out: Yes
Catering: Yes

If you are in the mood to try the finest cuisine from the Iberian Peninsula, then you should go to O Lavrador Restaurant and Bar in Jamaica.

O Lavrador offers several classic dishes that many in Portugal and Spain enjoy on a daily basis. I had the opportunity to try some of their meals during a visit to the restaurant on Monday afternoon.

I started off with an appetizer platter, which included fried calamari, steamed clams in garlic and wine sauce, shrimp sautéed in garlic sauce and homemade sausage flambee. All of the starters were delicious but the calamari was especially my favorite. It was cooked to perfection and the breading did not peel right off the calamari like it does in many other restaurants. The marinara sauce adds a nice touch to the meal as well. I used it on all of the appetizers, not just the calamari.

Next, I moved on to the main course. They let me pick two of their dishes off the menu. I decided to sample one Spanish dish and one Portuguese dish. I went with the Marinara Paella, or the “Paelha Marinheira” in Portuguese, and Sautéed Pork Tenderloins, clams and cubed potatoes mixed with a brown sauce, or “Carne de Porco a Alentejana” in its native tongue.

The paella was a potpourri of seafood mixed into one bowl. It had lobster, clams, mussels, shrimp, calamari and scallops mixed in with some yellow saffron rice. Each of the seafood had its own individual taste. Put them together and you get one glorious meal.

The pork was an easy-to-eat meal. The meat was soft and tender with every bite; I guess that is how it gets its name. The pork makes for good mixing with the brown sauce. The potatoes gave me the best of two worlds. It is a little bit crunchy but still soft enough to eat and had a ton of flavor, which surprised me a bit as I was not expecting that.

O Lavrador is highly recommended if you’re looking for tasty food in the Jamaica area. Don’t hesitate to stop by this restaurant if you’re looking for a terrific meal in a nice, relaxed atmosphere.

- Luis Gronda