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Antonio Bóia: the master of Portuguese cooking

Antonio Bóia: the master of Portuguese cooking

António Bóia António Bóia

Chef António Bóia is considered by many to be the grand master of Portuguese cooking thanks to his creative, high-quality dishes and his gift for organisation and team leadership. Today, working in the heart of Lisbon, Bóia is one of the most influential chefs on the Portuguese food scene. His influence goes far beyond creating delicious dishes for Grupo Jncquoi restaurants; Bóia has now become an institution in his own right, a "school" that has taught some of Portugal’s most promising chefs.

Born in Santulhão-Vimioso (Bragança) in 1970, Bóia began his cooking career at just 16 in Paris, where he honed his culinary skills and took his first steps in the industry as a kitchen. After training at Le Cordon Bleu, his career took him back to Portugal and he was involved in everything from cooking in luxury hotels such as The Ritz Four Seasons to taking part in celebrated events such as Roland Garros Paris, Rock in Rio and the Volvo Ocean Race, among others.

"My roots are in French culture because I started out in French restaurants. But there came a time when I wanted to return to Portugal to discover authentic Portuguese cooking. I wasn’t interested in schools with big international programmes," Bóia explains.

JNcQUOI Asia

JNcQUOI Asia © JNcQUOI

 

The "school" of Antonio Bóia

Bóia’s contribution to food goes beyond his experience in the kitchens of numerous prestigious restaurants where he has worked over the years, and also comprises training new talent. In fact, he has had his greatest impact as a leader and trainer of teams. Since 1992, Bóia has worked with the Olympic team, and performed a key role in international competitions such as the World Culinary Grand Prix and the American Culinary Classic. In 2004, Bóia became manager of the junior team, training young chefs for challenges around the globe.

He has essentially created his own "school" and has had a huge influence on the Portuguese food scene. Many of the chefs who have trained under him have gone on to achieve great renown in the industry, taking the philosophy and unshakeable commitment to quality that characterise their teacher with them.

JNcQUOI Avenida

JNcQUOI Avenida © JNcQUOI

 

The future of Portuguese food according to Antonio Bóia

When you ask Bóia about the future of Portuguese food, he shares his opinion with both optimism and a degree of concern. "You achieve things with a lot of work, humbleness and dedication. Chefs should really appreciate our products and Portuguese producers because I think that, unfortunately, we’re losing lots of traditional, highly valuable producers," he explains.

We should really appreciate Portuguese producers because we’re losing lots of highly valuable traditional producers

Emphasising the importance of sustainability, Bóia continues: "We should be concerned about protecting the environment, about searching for the highest quality produce and knowing how to use it properly. Because, with everything that’s happening, we can’t keep on wasting things like we are now. We have to know how to transform and strengthen our produce."

 

A legacy at the table: António Bóia’s restaurants

António Bóia’s restaurants are a monument to his skill and unique culinary vision. Jncquoi Avenida, on iconic Avenida Liberdade, is a haven of sophistication and Portuguese luxury. As Bóia himself says: "luxury at a restaurant isn’t just what you eat. It’s everything: the service, the atmosphere, how you feel... Luxury is everything we do from the moment the customer arrives to the moment they leave," he explains. With over 500 labels on the wine list and a harmonious blend of Portuguese and international cooking, the restaurant offers an unforgettable culinary experience.

JNcQUOI Frou Frou

JNcQUOI Frou Frou © JNcQUOI

Similarly, Delibar Jncquoi, on the middle floor of the Teatro Tivoli building, is a relaxed and elegant space. It serves a carefully selected range of delicatessen products and a variety of drinks and cocktails; Delibar is the perfect place to unwind both during the day and at night.

JNcQUOI Frou Frou, a space inspired by the roaring twenties and the most restricted places in underground China at that time, with the best Cantonese food in the country and the first immersive gastronomic experience in Portugal.

Luxury is everything we do from the moment the customer arrives to the moment they leave

Jncquoi Asia, Bóia’s second restaurant, blends Portuguese influences with Eastern cuisine in a cosmopolitan and vibrant atmosphere. Also found on Avenida da Liberdade, the restaurant offers diners four different experiences: Bar Ganda, a restaurant, a terrace and a fashion store. The group’s next venue to open will be Jncquoi House on one of Lisbon’s most emblematic streets and it promises to be a culinary milestone in the city.

Bóia is a chef, mentor and firm fan of the roots of Portuguese cooking. He’s famous for his passion, dedication and creativity, which have made him one of Portugal’s greatest chefs and a leader who has left an enduring mark on Portuguese food and the training of future talent. From his own training in France to his work with Olympic teams and his leadership of Grupo Amorim Luxury, Bóia has created a fantastic legacy of culinary excellence. His focus on the quality of raw materials, sustainability, respect for the environment and a constant search for excellence illustrate his commitment to the evolution of Portuguese cuisine, establishing high standards as his personal trademark and consolidating his position as one of the most influential figures on Portugal’s food scene.

Equipo António Bóia

Equipo António Bóia © JNcQUOI

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