Lisboa back as Calibre

DarkLadyWolfMother 16 September 2008 15

Lisboa at Woden Plaza have been open again now for almost two weeks, except now they’re called Calibre. Despite the new, if dull, name the old wait staff are still there.

The only thing still missing from the renovation is the outdoor canopy. Apparently this was to be finished last Friday week, but Westfield made them take it down for reasons I couldn’t get a single answer to. It seems to be to do with approvals.

The decor inside is not much different, though they’re now using the 70’s styled cylindrical light shades that seem to be on special as so many places now use them (APK Woden and McDonalds Weston Creek for two).

They’ve rearranged the front counter to face the seating proper, rather than the door. One inside entrance has also been moved further down towards Angus and Robertsons, presumably to give them more kitchen space. Though it really looks like they have less from the brief view I had.

I know many here weren’t fans of the food quality in the old Lisboa, but I was, so take what I say with a pinch of a condiment of your choice.

The menu is slightly changed, but old favourites like the chicken platters, nachos and the like are still there. The prices seem about as they were before, but I admit my memory might be faulty.

So far I’ve tried the Gnocci, Meat Lover’s Pizza and the BLT. All were tasty and filling. I might suggest they’re of slightly better quality than before.

Overall, if you were a fan of Lisboa, I think you’ll enjoy Calibre.

However, I do hope they get their outside enclosure up.

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15 Responses to Lisboa back as Calibre
RestaurantReviewer RestaurantReviewer 12:48 pm 08 Dec 08

Low Calibre experience. Truly ordinary food, no actually, less than ordinary. Salad for three meals limp and tasteless as though it was kept all day. Salt and Pepper Squid, overcooked and certainly not fresh. This is a frozen food joint. The Battered Fish the same, over cooked and not fresh. The antipasta for two was uninspiring, with ingredients sourced from the pantry of the IGA with the sliced chicken meat very sad and mean.

We expressed our feelings to the staff who did not respond with ‘I’m so very sorry to hear that. We pride ourselves in making food people can eat and please have a discount/voucher (insert some service ideas here)’

Outdoor seating dull and the cigarette smoke did not enhance the ‘dining out experience’.

Overall, another very ordinary Canberra food experience. Never eating there again, don’t want to waste time or money.

Want good food and pleasant surroundings, eat at home.

s-s-a s-s-a 10:18 pm 07 Oct 08

Overall, if you were a fan of Lisboa, I think you’ll enjoy Calibre.

Oooh yeah – had my first meal there tonight since they reopened. The Thai Chicken Salad was an absolutely delicious flavour explosion! Lots of lime juice and coriander (though chilli lovers might have to ask for extra), crisp vegetables and leaves, crunchy Hokkien noodles and chicken still warm and smokey from the grill – yummm!

The coffee I enjoyed as much as previously – it might not suit all tastes but I like it and it sh*ts all over the dishwater they serve up at some other places (eg Brunos at Mawson).

Like Babars nearby, outdoor seating would be lovely with summer coming up if it was also smoke-free. Until this appears I’ll have to continue retreating inside :(.

Jungle Jim Jungle Jim 10:36 am 17 Sep 08

My friends and I would meet at Lisboa on Friday afternoons after work every so often and we’ve always found the food, drinks and service to be great.

Now that it’s Calibre and they’ve finally gotten the outdoor seating up and running, I expect we will be heading back for many more Friday arvo drinks and snacks, especially now that they have Kirin on tap, available by the pint no less.

Duke Duke 10:30 am 17 Sep 08

Of the three times i’ve been to Lisboa I enjoyed the food and I consider myself a foodie. I don’t drink coffee either but have found it a good place for a few beers before or after a film.

I hope the new place lives up to my previous experiences.

Loquaciousness Loquaciousness 10:06 am 17 Sep 08

tylersmayhem said :

For the record, Hank, I’m not an employee – just a foodie 🙂

I can’t believe I saw the words “foodie” and “Lisboa” in one sentence. It sounds as absurd as “foodie” and “club meal” or “foodie” and “oporto” in the same sentence.

Well, ignoring the fact that “foodie” and “Lisboa” weren’t actually in the same sentence, I’d like to point out that it’s actually “foodie” and “Portuguese chicken”. Never ordered anything else there, and I’m not a coffee drinker, so I can’t comment on the rest of Lisboa’s offerings.

Also, in my case, “foodie” == someone who appreciates tasty, quality food, not stack-and-drizzle a la carte.


tylersmayhem tylersmayhem 9:21 am 17 Sep 08

For the record, Hank, I’m not an employee – just a foodie 🙂

I can’t believe I saw the words “foodie” and “Lisboa” in one sentence. It sounds as absurd as “foodie” and “club meal” or “foodie” and “oporto” in the same sentence.

DawnDrifter DawnDrifter 12:18 am 17 Sep 08

ill be giving it a go on friday night.. been there before several times and have had good experience every time. new decor looks ok but they really do need that outdoors area ready.. its half their customer base gone until they get it up esp since its warming up

Loquaciousness Loquaciousness 7:14 pm 16 Sep 08

Funny, the previous post about Lisboa was full of people praising it. Makes me wonder if people have short memories, or if we’re just tapping into a different audience now from two months ago.

I, for one, loved the place, and will definitely be back to try it out under the new name.

For the record, Hank, I’m not an employee – just a foodie 🙂


F430 F430 5:02 pm 16 Sep 08

worst coffee in Canberra and thats saying something….. Haven’t been back since, YUCK
2nd worst is Bruno’s in Mawson.

sezzle sezzle 1:02 pm 16 Sep 08

I attended one of those Westfield fashion shows / breakfast that they put on at Lisboa once. Was very dissapointed as we showed up 10 min earlier than the time stated too, only to find out that people turned up an hour or so early. All the food was gone and the staff refused to cook any more. I spoke to the rude person who claimed to be the owner/manager and didn’t even get an apology. Lack of customer service has made me vow never to go back there again.

Hank Hank 12:52 pm 16 Sep 08

Sounds like the first two posts are from people who work there! Lol

tylersmayhem tylersmayhem 12:23 pm 16 Sep 08

I remember when Lisboa first opened, and the food was A1. the platters were plentifuls and excellent quality. As with many Canberra restaurants, they got greedy and reduced the portion size, and more importantly, reduced the quality. The last time I went there, the food had clearly been cooked way in advance and the portion pitiful.

If the food is good again under a new name, lets hope it doesn’t turn to s**t the minute the restaurant becomes popular.

I still lament the day the Legends Spanish Restaurant went from the amazing food serving cosy little restaurant in the back streets of Manuka, to the hollow, sucky food function room style eatery upstairs. One of Canberra’s greatest restaurant losses.

realityskin realityskin 12:16 pm 16 Sep 08

Loquaciousness said :

Woohoo! I’ll be back there for some Portugese chicken pronto!

Anyone want to meet me for dinner???


You shouting ?

Loquaciousness Loquaciousness 11:30 am 16 Sep 08

Woohoo! I’ll be back there for some Portugese chicken pronto!

Anyone want to meet me for dinner???


futto futto 11:02 am 16 Sep 08

I had lunch there yesterday. Sirloin steak Sandwich with a side of seasoned potatoes that were suspiciously like the great and tasty Lisboa potatoes of old.

Sambo was great as was the coffee. Highly recommended.

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