Itineraries with the places that are part of this gastronomic route commanded by women
The Donas do Sabor Festival, a delightful tour of Salvador’s kitchens run by women, has set tongues wagging. A network of powerful women has been forming, stimulating gastronomic tourism in Salvador. Through each woman participating in the festival, we build, from kitchen to kitchen, and from recipe to recipe, the most current and multifaceted mosaic of cuisine in our city.
Visit Salvador da Bahia has set up some itineraries with the places that are part of this gastronomic route commanded by women. This way, you will walk around the city, discover the most famous dishes and get inspired by the stories of these entrepreneurs.
Discover Eliene, Graça and Maria’s restaurants
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Today’s tour starts at Mouraria, a neighborhood located in the old city center, between Avenida Joana Angélica and Barroquinha. On the one hand, Nazaré, Fonte Nova and Barbalho; on the other side, São Pedro, Lapa and Campo Grande. All around, there are slopes and alleys that lead to Pelourinho.
It is also known as the neighborhood of the best “lambretas” in Salvador. There, we’ll meet Dona Eliene Maria dos Santos Cunha, owner and chef of Bar Koisa Nossa.
Koisa Nossa is known as one of the best and most traditional lambreta bars. But, for the Donas do Sabor Festival, Eliene chose to present the “pastel de mariscada”, another flagship of the restaurant.
“This pastel is an excellent starter. It comes with a lot of filling and the dough is always crunchy. It’s a hit. Then, if the customer wants, he can keep on drinking some beer, complement it with some lambreta and everything is fine! Here, the customer is always satisfied”, jokes Dona Eliene.
Eliene Maria dos Santos Cunha has lived her passion for gastronomy for almost 4 decades, taking lovingly prepared dishes to all her clients and friends.
“Gastronomy is my greatest passion”, she reveals.
The calm atmosphere of Mouraria, with its mansions built decades ago – some listed as historical heritage of the Bahian capital – and the excellent food served will make you want to stay there forever. A curiosity is that Largo da Palma was the setting for the recording of the classic film “Dona Flor and Her Two Husbands”, inspired by the work of Bahian writer Jorge Amado.
The tour has just begun….
All over Salvador, there is no lack of good stories and great food. So, let’s get organized right away, because the tour of the Donas do Sabor Festival gastronomic route is just beginning. Now let’s get to know Graça Novais’ restaurant, the Bar Quintal Raso da Catarina, in Campo Grande.
Before you even start your lunch, you’ll wonder how you’ve never been there before. This restaurant, located on a busy avenue in the neighborhood, is practically a hideout. Not so far from Teatro Castro Alves and next to Teatro Vila Velha, it is frequented by people who love the arts. The staircase that leads to the restaurant is entirely made of mosaics, which makes for beautiful photos.
The food at the Bar Quintal Raso da Catarina is famous throughout the four corners of Bahia. The smell of the “escondidinhos”, “arrumadinhos”, “baião de dois” and curd cheese exudes throughout Campo Grande. And the butter farofa? It has an unmistakable flavor. All of this at the hands of chef Graça Novais, who started at the bar as a cashier.
“I started to enjoy cooking when I realized that the people who used to go to the bar deserved much more than what was being offered. At the time, I stayed at the checkout. I left it and went to the kitchen. At first, it was difficult, I took private lessons with a chef and I researched on the internet. I’m not a professional by training, but at heart. I try to give the best to my customers. For me, cooking for them is a party,” she explains.
Graça’s highlight for the Donas do Sabor Festival is the “baião sertanejo”, which has a curious history:
“The baião sertanejo dish was a customer’s suggestion. He was very fond of smoked meats, and at the bar, only Baião do Raso was available, which is meatless (we have three flavors of Baião: meatless raso, smoked meat and sun dried meat). It became a success”.
A coffee and a focaccia, please…
And if we’re talking about really cool places, which a lot of people don’t know about, how about finishing this tour in a cozy café, in a quiet street in Rio Vermelho? If tranquility is the last word you would associate with one of the most bohemian neighborhoods in the city, come with Visit Salvador da Bahia and we will show you.
Getting to know Ahorita Padaria Artesanal is to take a journey of flavors through quality breadmaking, by the hands of 38-year-old chef Maria Eme Bê. Passionate about cooking, her history in professional gastronomy began around 2010, when she lived in São Paulo.
“I was doing a Masters in Psychology and, at one point, I had to get a job to help with expenses and I ended up working in a small restaurant as a kitchen help. In the rush of that hot and cramped kitchen, I found my place, and I quickly knew that this was what I wanted to do from then on. In 2012, I returned to Salvador, worked in other kitchens, and, in one of them, I fell in love with baking bread”, says Maria, who left her job at the restaurant and started dedicating herself to artisanal baking.
Before creating Ahorita Padaria Artesanal, together with her partner Davi Caramelo in 2019, the chef made custom-made breads, baked bread for delivery and attended several fairs and events.
“But my dream was to have a place to sell warm bread, coming out of the oven straight into the hands of the customer”, she recalls.
For the Donas do Sabor Festival, the chef prepared the Onion Focaccia with Cheese, which will go very well with a cup of coffee. Another tip is the refreshing Água de Jamaica, a cold tea prepared with hibiscus, demerara sugar and lemon.
But, if you prefer to end the gastronomic tour with just coffee, take the opportunity to “take this tour home” and guarantee breakfast the next day.
On the menu, the focaccias, based on olive oil, are delicious and can have different flavors. Also try the mushroom focaccia, the parmesan with oregano focaccia and the sesame with coarse salt one.
Watch the episodes of the webseries Donas do Sabor and learn more at this link.
If you are also a chef and/or run a restaurant, register for the Donas do Sabor Festival at this link.
Koisa Nossa Bar
Dona do Sabor: Eliene Maria dos Santos Cunha
Address: Travessa Engenheiro Allioni, 1 – Nazaré, Salvador – BA, 40040-060
Social Network: @barkoisanossa
Dish for the festival: Pastel de Mariscada
Quintal Raso da Catarina Bar
Dona do Sabor: Graça Novais
The dish of the Donas do Sabor Festival: Baião Sertanejo
Address: Av. Sete de Setembro, 1370 – Campo Grande, Salvador – BA, 40080-001
Opening hours: Tuesday to Thursday, from 3:30 pm to 10:00 pm; Friday and Saturday from 12:00 pm to 11:30 pm; and Sunday from 12:00 pm to 6:00 pm
Phone # (71) 98842-0588
Ahorita Artisanal Bakery
Dona do Sabor: Maria Eme Bê
The dish of the Donas do Sabor Festival: Onion Focaccia with Cheese
Address: R. Tupinambás, 423 – Rio Vermelho, Salvador – BA, 41940-090
Opening hours: Wednesday to Friday from 3:00 pm to 8:00 pm and Saturday from 9:00 am to 12:30 pm.
Phone # (71) 99664-3944