George Mendes has a slight fish problem. His newest restaurant, Lupulo, is an ode to his ancestral Portuguese cuisine and the beer tavern cervejarias of Lisbon. Mendes mixes traditional Portuguese flavors with modern gourmet technique including Atlantic Salmon topped with salty caviar, Portuguese sardines with shredded roasted bell peppers, and golden fried bacalhau croquettes.
The menu of rustic Portuguese fare, centered around a wood-burning grill, and paired with an extensive selection of craft beers. A raw bar and charcuterie station located at the restaurant’s central, wrap-around dining bar serves seafood, cured Iberico ham, and petiscos, or tapas-style bites meant for snacking. Main courses such as Piri Piri Chicken, Grilled Octopus, and Salt Cod Casserole can be enjoyed on their own, or shared family-style. A rotating list of more than a 15 Portuguese and American craft beers on tap--created by Lupulo's resident Cicerone, Ryan Mauban-- offers refreshing pairings for Lupulo’s casual dishes, along with a selection of Portuguese wine and simple, well-executed cocktails.
The restaurant’s design by Créme (Red Farm and Danji) pays homage to traditional Portuguese taverns with handcrafted blue and white tiles and rustic wood accents, while objects collected throughout Mendes’ travels in Portugal decorate shelves lining the walls and street-facing windows. Tables topped with hand-made Portuguese tiles and accented with black iron surround Lupulo’s focal point, the lively, 35-seat, blackened steel-topped bar.