The best food to try in Portugal

Carabineiro with a brulée and Algarve almonds

The absolutely delicious carabineiro, a famous starter served at restaurant Avenue. This is the best thing I tasted in 2014 until now.

The prestigious Portuguese newspaper “Público” has made a list of the best food to try in Portugal. The selection of the “50 dishes to eat Portugal” is an authentic happiness map for foodies. Here is the list for best Starters and Tapas. We assure you that some of these will make you go crazy.

Starters and Tapas

Fried prawns | Restaurante Pôr-do-Sol

Praia do Carvalhal, Grândola. Tel 265 497 225
Closed on Tuesdays
Price: 14,50€
Recommended by: Alexandra Prado Coelho


“Good prawns and a sauce to dip the good Alentejo bread and get to lick your fingers, with a privileged view of a magnificent beach.”


Petals of Bacon | Tomba Lobos

Bairro da Pedra Basta, lot 16 R / C. Portalegre. Tel: 245 906 111
Closed Sunday evening and Monday
Price: 3,75€
Created by: José Júlio Vintém
Recommended by: Miguel Pires

“This entry is as simple as licking your fingers and wanting more. The quality of the white lard (Alentejano pork, aka “Black”)  finely sliced  and taken to the ​​oven is the key.”


Sea soup in bread | Restaurante Ideal

R. Infante Dom Henrique, 15 Cabanas de Tavira (Algarve). Tel: 281 370 232
Price: 8€
Recommended by: Alexandra Prado Coelho

“This fish and seafood soup, perfumed with mint, would be very good on a platter. But what makes it really special is the fact that it comes inside a round bread from Algarve.”


Percebes Sítio do Rio

Estrada da Praia da Bordeira, Carrapateira (Algarve). Tel: 282 973 119
Closes on Tuesday
Recommended by: Alexandra Prado Coelho


“The art of percebes is more in the way they are caught – and the men that do it are real heroes – that in the kitchen, where people just have to be careful to not ruin it. A place that will always guarantee you this is Sítio do Rio.”


“Carabineiro” snack | São Gabriel

Estrada Vale do Lobo, Quinta do Lago. Almancil (Algarve). Tel: 289 394 521
Only dinners (except on Sundays). Closes on Mondays
Price: 75€ for the menu
Created by: chef Leonel Pereira
Recommended by: Alexandra Prado Coelho


“Leonel Pereira serves the sea flavor in a bite in this snack that starts the tasting menu of São Gabriel. (…) This is our proposal because, after it, no one will resist to the rest of the menu, unmissable.”


Codfish cakes | Sara Barracoa

Praça D. Maria II, 720. V.N. Famalicão. Tel.: 252 322 487
Closes on Saturdays
Price: 6€ or 9€ for half or one portion
Recommended by: José Augusto Moreira


“It is difficult to achieve more perfection in a codfish cake”

“Prego” of tuna | Cervejaria da Esquina

Correia Teles, 56 Lisbon. Tel: 213 874 644
Closed on Sunday evenings and Mondays
Price: 8,90€
Created by: chef Vítor Sobral
Recommended by: Fortunato da Câmara

“Prego” is a popular meat sandwich in Portugal. Vítor Sobral does it with tuna and food critic Fortunato da Câmara describes it like this:  “Within a slender bread mixture and crisp crust, this tuna lightly marked brings a subtle touch of garlic and offers a ‘carnal’ juiciness that one hardly forgets”.

Minced horse mackerel  | Taberna da Rua das Flores

Rua das Flores, 103 Lisbon. Tel: 213 479 418
Closed Saturday lunch and Sunday all day
Price: 7,50€
Recommend by: Miguel Pires

“The fish, chopped to order, with green apple and celery is seasoned with citrus juice, sesame oil and soy sauce and accompanied by marinated wakame seaweed salad. It is the best selling dish of the house and when you sample it, you will realize why.”

“Carabineiro” and almonds from Algarve | Avenue

Av. Liberdade, 129 Lisbon. Tel: 21 601 7127
Closed on Sundays
Price: 18€
Created by: chef Marlene Vieira
Recommend by: Alexandra Prado Coelho

“A surprising combination of sweet and salty, this brulée with almond blends perfectly with the broth made with the head of the prawn and the animal itself, delicately cooked”.


Leaves and marrow | Feitoria

Doca do Bom Sucesso, Lisbon. Tel 210 400 200
Closed on Sundays
Price: only available on the tasting menu
Created by:  chef João Rodrigues
Recommended by: Miguel Pires


“The taste is intense and sweet, but the result is nonetheless lightweight.”

Burek jugoslavo | Bistro 100 Maneiras

Largo da Trindade, 9. Lisbon. Tel.: 910 307 575
Closes on Sundays
Price: 8€
Created by: chef Ljubomir Stanisic
Recommended by: Miguel Pires


“One of the most emblematic starters of Bistro 100 Maneiras.”


Mashed potato and egg | Charcutaria Lisboa

Rua do Alecrim, 47 A. Lisboa. Tel: 213 460 672
Closed on Sundays
Price: 9,50€
Created by: chef Manuel Martins
Recommended by: Alexandra Prado Coelho


“It’s simple, but it’s kind of difficult to achieve simplicity – and that makes it particularly difficult to stop eating.”


Chicken Pie | Chef, Comida pronta

Rua Borges Carneiro, 11B. Lisbon. Tel: 213 931 050
Doesn’t close
Price: 1,25€
Recommended by: Fortunato da Câmara

“Blonde and crunchy mass of medium size, well-filled with a juicy stewed chicken, slightly frayed”.


[To be continued]


Want to try some traditional Portuguese Tapas and Wines? Try our Lisbon Tour + Portuguese Wines Tasting, a great success for slow food lovers.

Want to go for something even more special? Try wines from the beginning of the 20th century in our Rare and Exquisite Wine Tasting.