Nestled in a quiet spot beyond a coconut tree lined pathway, Xaviers is located enroute South Anjuna beach, a stone’s throw away from the flea market grounds. A few yards inland, from the main road, it adds a homely touch with a garden and the main house behind the restaurant area. One could enjoy a calm read with chilled-out music in the background while their meal is being prepared. All ingredients are sourced from organic farms on the borders of Goa.
THE RESTAURANT & BAR
Xavier’s is all about the food - dishes with original recipes. Returning customers, a prominent number of guests and employees from 5 star hotels who dine here, are testimony to this. With traditional cooking styles, especially recipes passed down from generations, a good meal is assured.
The restaurant specialises in seafood, Indian and Goan cuisine. It has a seating capacity of about seventy. Guests are encouraged to choose their own fish, crabs or lobsters from a big tray with the day’s fresh catch placed nearby. They are also welcome to walk into the kitchen and watch their dish come to life.
Crispy Cheese Naan is the preferred appetiser here along with Fish Tikka. Home-made Icecreams, Chocolate Pudding and Mango Cheese Cake top the dessert selections. The health conscious may try the various Organic Salads on offer. Stuffed crabs and lobsters are served as specialty platters. Most of all, what diners swear by is the Beef Steak in Balsamic Sauce served on a good helping of mashed potatoes.
The bar has a range of domestic alcoholic beverages.
Xavier Nunes is a famous person from Anjuna. He, alike a few other restaurant owners in the neighbourhood, saw a great potential in catering to foreign travellers who thronged the beaches of Anjuna and Vagator. Circa 1986, although there was difficulty initially, he did manage to set up a shack within his ancestral property, known by his namesake, Xavier’s. Business grew multifold the following seasons and a second shack took shape next to it. A specialty of Xavier’s was their season opening and closing buffet spreads which were offered complimentary to anyone who drops by. This was as surprising to the diners as to the businesses around.
The property including the restaurant was eventually handed down to his nephew John Nunes who runs the show now. He is well known as Johnny Boy. With quality food being served all day around, growing up, he learnt the nuances of a restaurant business and the importance of traditional recipes and a well-made dish. Fishing and angling has been in the family for generations; as his hobby, one will notice the immense knowledge of seafood should you have a chat with him. Of course, the biggest and the best catch always goes to the kitchen.
John is supported in the kitchen and operations by a very dependable Viru. Nepali by birth, Viru, who started as a dishwasher several years ago somewhere in Panjim, is now the head-chef at Xavier’s who is behind mouth watering desserts aforementioned. John also employs the services of a chef from a luxury hotel for Tandoor items of the menu.
Xavier’s, one of the oldest restaurants in the area, still projects the charm of a bygone era.