Luz – 21 at Portofino

Oh to be 21 again. I can still remember my 21st birthday. We had a ‘posh’ meal out in a steak house and the scene could have been lifted straight out of ‘Life On Mars’ or ‘Ashes To Ashes’.

Today, our eldest grandchild is 21 and the family tradition is being repeated. This time the food is Italian, and the best Italian restaurant in Luz is … in Lagos. Lunch is booked for 2pm in Ristorante Portofino. The weather is fine at 22°C, no wind, and just a little haze obscuring the sun.


Our grandson went vegetarian 2 or 3 years back and Italian food means he gets a decent choice. Portofino overlooks Lagos marina, and so there is a connection to Madeleine McCann, but frankly you have to travel miles and miles if you want to avoid all connections.

This is the view from Portfino’s.


What do you choose as a 21st birthday present for someone who gets more or less everything he desires? Well, he got a Kindle for Christmas and loves it, because he loves reading. We are talking about classic literature here, which is not my cup of tea, so he knows a lot more about this genre than I do. I reckoned there was no point in me trying to work out what might interest him there, so I steered clear of that.

But as I pointed out, he is a vegetarian, whilst he lives in a family of omnivores, so meals are not the easiest of occasions when at home. Personally, I am a decent cook. I am not a chef, but I can recognise a decent recipe when I see one. So I have combined his status as a veggie and his Kindle with a download of a vegetarian recipe book that gets good reviews.


Vesela Tabakova writes lots of recipe books and she gets good ratings. With 100 recipes there should be something of interest to our birthday boy. My own curiosity about this book is because it combines vegetarian with a lot of quinoa. My alter ego is on a wheat-free eating regime, and that seems to be working well in terms of weight reduction. I guess I need to include more quinoa in our meals. However, I fully expect there will be a bit of a wobble this lunchtime in Portofino. After all, it is not everyday that your grandson celebrates his 21st.


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