Britto’s one of the few quintessentially Goan restaurants in Baga beach, has acquired an iconic status among locals and tourists, finds out Joseph Pinto
Sun, surf and seafood – is considered to be Goa by tourists, but a trip to Baga is incomplete without relishing the Goan cuisines nurtured in the tradition Goan recipes at Brittos Bar and Restaurant which serves authentic Goan meals which satisfies one’s taste buds.
Brittos is one of the oldest joint that has carved a niche for itself and being synonymous among the locals and tourist, it has become one of the landmarks of Baga.
Brittos Bar and Restaurant which was established in 1965 with a small four table joint, has grown manifold and owes its existence to the founder Dominic Britto, the father of the Cajetan who presently owns the same.
Prior to setting up his own venture i.e. Brittos Bar and Restaurant, Dominic being a chef himself was employed at various consulates of countries such as United States of America, Poland and Kuwait, based in Mumbai.
The legacy of the family business has been carried forward by Dominic’s son, Cajetan (Caji) Britto by maintaining the Goan ‘feel at home’ ambience thereby giving the clients a sense of equality irrespective of whether the client is a celebrity, Hollywood artists, politician, walk-in layman etc.
His philosophy is ‘everyone is equal’ as he feels that when they come to his bar and restaurant they all have the same food, served in similar way, for the same price and there is no difference as far as to whom he provides service to.
As Caji recollected the olden days he said, “During earlier times there was no much business as Baga was considered to be a virgin beach. Only the old clients who knew dad were giving regular business, as he used to be called at Taj Holiday Village for the special dishes wherein he was good at the continental and Goan cuisines.”
Caji said that his father’s specialty was stuffed fish roll, baked crabs and beef steak.
A few restaurants which were running during that period were St Anthony and Souza Lobo, he added.
Caji deserves all the compliments, especially for being a celebrated restaurant in Baga.
Britto’s has an impressive display counter of lobsters and live fish, which the guests can choose as per their specifications, the price of which depends on the season.
Cajetan informed that he is not a chef by profession, but a computer programmer who worked in Mumbai for five years. He left Mumbai in 1985 and settled down in Goa to carry forward the family business.
All our masalas for various recipes are prepared by the family itself thereby ensuring to maintain the taste and quality of food thereof, he added. The Goan food that is served in the restaurant consists of the recipes prepared by dad, he said.
When questioned as to how he managed the business successfully, keeping in view that he is not from the hotel industry, he said, I used to assist my father in cooking which eventually became a great advantage to carry out the business.
Cajetan’s son Dominic Britto is presently assisting him to run the business. Being a IHM graduate from Chennai, and although Dominic has worked in Mumbai but he feels pride in saying that ‘Goa is a paradise, and there is no other place better than Goa’.
The secret behind Brittos Bar and Restaurant in being the choice of foreign as well as local guests is the home-made masalas which are prepared in the traditional way, thereby giving pure Goan taste which is unique by itself.
“At present Brittos is the only restaurant which is run by a Goan, whereas others have sub-let their business activity. Due to our personal supervision on the food and maintaining the quality standards, Goans prefer coming to our restaurant,” said Caji.
The Brittos Bar and Restaurant specialises in Goan, Chinese, Tandoor and Continental cuisine and is open for breakfast, lunch and dinner.
One can get some mouth-watering, relishing food and the sea-food platter is mesmerising. The other good dish which one would like to lay his/her hands on is the prawn stuffed with crab and prawn baffad.
1965 food hub is another feather in the cap of Brittos, which is a food court located behind Souza Lobo at Calangute beach. One need to taste the Goan fish thali which is the specialty of that restaurant.
The other venture started by the Brittos is the in-house bakery.
Cajetan’s son Dominic said that they have a plan to expand the bakery and pastry sector and that many top restaurants pick up their bakery requirements from Brittos. “Some of the bakery items one need to try is the blue berry cheese cake, tiramusa, alphine chocolate mousse. We also take outdoor catering orders of cake for birthdays and weddings.”
When asked how the business was during the demonetisation, Cajetan said, “The first 3 days we had a tough time as we did not have the card swiping machine. Some of our regular guests were given food on credit. We were the first to get a card swiping machine and this really helped us as many tourists with credit cards came to us.”
Ever since the GTDC parking at Baga has been operational we are getting huge number of guests, he added and Cajetan concluded by saying, “The tourists say that trip to Goa is incomplete without having food at Brittos,”