Lisbon is a cosmopolitan city where you can eat the best of international cuisine. But if the idea is to try the traditional local food, there is an obligatory list.
There are things that are simple and yet so good. This is a good example.
The “Prego” is a typical dish of Portugal’s cuisine consisting of a steak made with olive oil with garlic, served inside a loaf, or on the plate. When tasted on bread we traditionally use only mustard and / or hot sauce as seasoning.
In the dish is usually accompanied by chips, rice, a starry egg and salad
The new generation of Portuguese however innovated creating delicious variations of this dish, giving it a gourmet touch. “O Prego da Peixaria” is perhaps one of the best places to try out these improved versions of the traditional “Pregos”, with cheeses, bacon, pesto and much more (our favorite sandwich is the “Yuppie”).
Where to eat: Prego da Peixaria
Address: There are several through town. We suggest you to go to the site and choose the address that is closest to you at the time of hunger: http://opregodapeixaria.com/pt/
Octopus a lagareiro
Very admired by the Portuguese, for those who like what comes from the sea, is a mandatory dish.
The octopus is cooked, grilled, then served with warm olive oil, enriched with onions and golden garlic. The potatoes “ao murro” are the most traditional accompaniment.
Where to eat: “Tasquinha do lagarto” is one of the few taverns with wonderful food where more than 90% of the public is still local people. You will truly feel Portugal there. The food is cheap and divine! Maybe the best octopus in the city.
Address: R. de Campolide 273
Tel: 21 388 3202
Few things are as good as the habit of eating this delicious and nutritious fish. Unlike cod, which although it is part of the national tradition, has been fished in Norway and Iceland mainly, the sardines are fished on the Portuguese coast, besides being the main star of the Festival of Popular Saints, the main festive event in the country, which occurs during the month of June.
You will find the canned sardines seasoned almost anywhere in the city, but at the Sol and Pesca Restaurant it will be a special experience. It is an old fishing shop that has kept the original decoration and now has tables where you can taste a wide variety of sardines (and other fish) with a good drink and other surprises.
Where to eat: Restaurante Sol e Pesca
Address: R. Nova do Carvalho 44
Tel: 21 346 7203
Cod salty Cake with “Serra da Estrela” cheese
The cod needs no comments. It is perhaps the greatest symbol of Portuguese cuisine and it is everywhere. There are many ways of eating them, though, which make it even more special. Our suggestion is codfish (fried and well sequinho) stuffed with traditional cheese from Serra da Estrela, the Portuguese cheese that is on of the 5 best in the world.
You will always find it fresh and ready to eat at the Beer Museum, a nice place where you can taste beers from all Portuguese-speaking countries.
Where to eat: Museu da Cerveja
Address: Terreiro do Paço – Ala Nascente nº 62 a 65
Tel: 21 098 7656
Pastéis de Nata
The “pastéis de nata” (or Pastel de Belém) are the “cod” of Portuguese desserts, an icon of traditional and wonderful Portuguese cuisine. The “pastéis de nata” is a cream based on milk and eggs, wrapped in a crumbly and plump pastry. The most famous place to taste is undoubtedly the Bethlehem Pastéis Factory. In our opinion, the place to eat the most delicious ones, is much closer, in a small door in the square of Camões, where each new batch (hourly) rings to bell that warns that new hot pastels have just been made.
Where to eat: Manteigaria
Address: Rua do Loreto 2
Tel: 21 098 7656
It is said that the origin of alheira dates back to the late 15th and early 16th centuries and is associated with the presence of Jews in Trás-os-Montes. As they did not eat pork, the Jews didn´t eat usual sausages, thus being easily identifiable by the Inquisition.
They decided to pick up other kinds of meats and wrap them in a loaf of bread to create the alheira. The recipe eventually became popular among Christians, who finally added pork.
Perhaps not as popular as the cod or seafood, but the truth is that the Alheira is a great classic very appreciated. We suggest you try out the Poleiro Restaurant, famous for having the best alheira in town.
It is frequented by the national political class, by ambassadors, artists and the like.
Where to eat: O Poleiro
Address: R. de Entrecampos 30
Tel: 21 797 6265
Cos à Brás
As we couldn´t not fail to include a plate of cod, our suggestion is the famous “Bacalhau à Brás”, which besides being very tasty, is probably the most popular cod recipe in the national daily routine. The mix adds eggs, fries, onions and seasonings and is a delicious and usually more economical option to taste the famous cod.
For this experience we suggest the restaurant Varina da Madragoa. Situated in one of the most typical neighborhoods of the capital, decorated with antique tiles, and where Jose Saramago was a frequent visitor, the recipe there is divinely cooked.
Where to eat: Varina da Madragoa
Address: R. Madres 34
Tel: 21 396 5533