First, pick any hot or cold starter* each (served, as you'd expect, in small-plate style). There's a lot of choice, but we'd recommend the grilled sardines, traditional caldo verde soup, punhetas de bacalau (cod with onions and olives) and portuguese cheese taster.
Then, for your meaty main course (from the Carne section of the main menu), take your pick** of traditional pork, beef or chicken Portuguese favourites. For something a bit different, the Bifinhos de Cogumelos (chicken or beef served with cream, mushrooms and fries) or the Lombo de Porco assado servido com puré (Pork Loin and Mashed Potatoes) are good shouts.
*The Améijoas a Bulhao Pato (Clams cooked in beer, garlic and lemon) isn't avaiable with this Wriggle
**The 8oz Sirloin Steak isn't available with this Wriggle
Why we love Mae Maria: Good Portuguese cuisine is simple, delicious, founded on traditional recipes and full of tantalising morsels from the surf and the turf. Great Portuguese cuisine goes one step further: it warms your heart, flashes a smile across your face, brings back memories and makes you feel like you're sat around the dining table at home. This is where Mae Maria comes in.
A taverna-inspired bar, deli and restaurant on Cowbridge road, Mae Maria feels like it's been plucked straight from a locals' side-street in Porto. On Saturday evenings, the red wine flows and live music washes over a crowd of friendly Canton locals; in the mornings the air is alive with the aroma of freshly roasted coffee, lightly baked bites and the restocking of the deli fridge; come the late afternoon, low-key tables start to fill and a hubbub of conversation breaks out between mouthfuls of simply cooked Bachalau Dourado, Bitoque or Lombo de Porco (lightly seasoned and served, naturally, with hand-cut Portuguese fries).
The clean, spacious interior gives you ample space to relax (even when full, Mae Maria rarely feels busy), and the service is always attentive (waiters often talk diners through their meals after delivering the plates, especially if Portuguese specialities or house favourites are involved). To top it off, the food is made like the business is run - with love and understatement (and, of course, with ample servings of carbs and protein) - so an evening at Mae Maria is enough to make everybody feel like a genuine house guest of owner Laura.
How to claim: Purchase through Wriggle, then arrive at Mae Maria within the window of opportunity (if you want to call first to let them know when you're coming, say hi to Laura on 029 2039 9174). When you're there, introduce yourself as a Wriggler with a smile and show your unique Wriggle code to redeem your purchase. Remember to pay for any extras you buy, tip accordingly and leave feedback for your chance to win £20 credit, to let the restaurant know that it is awesome or to help the Mae Maria team keep improving. Wriggle responsibly.