Istrian shellfish include Mediterranean scallops, mussels, venus clams, Noah’s arks, queen scallops and oysters, each special in its own way. Various dishes are prepared with seashells, from salads, soups, buzaras (savoury sauces), pastas, risottos, etc. They are prepared in very simple ways as that is how one gets the most out of their flavour. Best during the winter, gourmands enjoy them most while they are in season.
This year, eight restaurants are participating in the Days of Seashells with interesting menus. You are welcome to visit them and taste the dishes they have prepared for you.
We visited the restaurant/tavern Porto Salvore in Savudrija where we enjoyed the various flavours of fantastically prepared shellfish dishes. Porto Salvore is situated right next to the sea and it offers dishes prepared with fresh ingredients – shellfish and fish being just some of them. The restaurant has been in business for eighteen years and it nurtures tradition while striving to give a special touch to each dish and to keep up with the times. The interior is pleasant, exuding warmth and a cosy atmosphere. The staff is very friendly, while the food is prepared in very interesting ways using seasonal ingredients.
For starters, we had cold appetizers from the Savudrija Bay – a delightfully refreshing seashell, rocket and orange salad.
Next was a tasty and unusual kiwi and shellfish soup. I was thrilled with both the way the soup was served and with the special taste that kiwis gave to the soup.
The soup was followed by the mixed shellfish à la Porto with excellently balanced flavours. Each dish was paired with a local Istrian Malvasia wine. Another fantastic companion to the individual dishes was the homemade olive oil.
I very much liked the homemade shellfish pasta, and we finished off the very tasty and successful evening with an apple and caramel cake.
And just when we thought the dinner was over, the gracious owner treated us to a sparkling wine and kiwi cocktail, which was excellent and unusual in a very good way. I am delighted each time I see owners and staff working with zeal, enthusiasm and joy, even after being in business for many years. One can taste love and skill in each dish, and I believe that this is very important to both local and international guests who are glad to return, both to the food and to the people and the atmosphere.