Do you love authentic Portuguese fare but also desire a unique culinary experience that can intrigue your senses?
Lisbon, the capital of Portugal, has a unique history and global connections that give its cuisine a special touch of the east and west. If you’re looking for a veritable experience in the best restaurants in Lisbon, these 15 establishments can give you something uniquely Mediterranean and Portuguese.
1. Arco da Velha
Address: Rua de São Paulo,184-186,1200-429 Lisbon
The restaurant may look like a tiny house serving your grandma’s favorite dishes, but that is exactly what makes the Arco one of Lisbon’s quirky and exciting restaurants. They serve simple, homemade Portuguese fare, including pies, roasted chicken, and grilled tuna.
The restaurant is modernized and serves nine Lisbon favorites alongside other European fares. They also have a bar where you can get your favorite drinks and even ask for gluten-free and vegan dishes.
2. Grelha do Carmo
Address: R. da Condessa 3A, 1200-120 Lisbon
This small restaurant is not in the usual tourist traps in Lisbon. It offers traditional Portuguese grilled meats, especially grilled seafood, like polvo o lagareiro (grilled octopus).
They prepare most dishes in the traditional style and use freshly-caught seafood. They offer sardines, cod, and mussels, all at an affordable price.
The restaurant’s proximity to Rossio Station and the Camo Convent Ruins makes it an ideal place for those looking for affordable fare and authentic Portuguese cooking styles.
3. Alfama Cellar
Address: R. dos Remédios 127 131, 1100-451 Lisbon
If you want more contemporary dishes with a Portuguese twist, the Alfama Cellar could be right up your alley. The place is famous for its seafood rice selection, with clams, shrimps, and fish all cooked tenderly in a pot.
The place also serves unique soups and dishes, such as beet gazpacho and oxtail stew.
Additionally, it serves the best wines in the country, with a constantly changing wine list to showcase the different flavors available from many areas in Portugal.
4. Canto da Atalaia
Address: R. da Atalaia 13, 1200-036 Lisbon
Canto da Atalaia is one restaurant that offers Fado, a musical style unique to Portugal’s old Lisbon neighborhoods. In this case, Bairro Alto.
At Canto, you can enjoy Fado’s tunes and lyrics along with Lisbon fare, such as pesticos and wine. You could also try the Fado menu, which usually includes starters, a main dish, dessert, wine, or coffee.
The dishes are simple Lisbon meals similar to any home-cooked meal (caldo verde, grilled tuna, Portuguese stew), but are flavorful and give you the sense of what the city’s regular folk would eat during a Fado performance.
Address: Travessa das Pedras Negras, 2, Lisbon, 1100-404
Prado is one of the city’s most popular restaurants. The place has high ceilings combined with ancient Roman ruins, and the menu celebrates the farm-to-table eating sensibility.
The wine list combines organic wines and flavors. But be sure to book a reservation, as it is always full of patrons wanting to try this trendy restaurant’s latest dishes.
6. Floresta Das Escadinhas
Address: Rua de Santa Justa 3, Lisbon
This restaurant is famous for its grilled fish. Most locals and tourists want to try their sardines cooked on charcoal and a side dish of potatoes and salad.
They also serve different grilled meats and sausages and offer indoor and outdoor dining areas where people can enjoy the view. If you want to try the best grilled fish in Lisbon, this place is it.
7. A Grelha Marisqueira E Churrasqueira
Address: Rua dos Sapadores 1, Graça, Lisbon
Tourists might find this place daunting, as there is no menu and most dishes are Portuguese. But it buzzes with excitement as locals and tourists share the same space.
They specialize in grilled fish and meats and serve them with bread, cheese, olives, and homemade butter. They also have several rice stews that make for a hearty meal in the colder seasons.
8. Carvoaria Jacto
Address: Rua Maria Andrade 6 B, Penha de França, Lisbon
If you are looking for a steakhouse in Lisbon, Carvoaria Jacto is a must-visit. It is always packed with locals eating grilled meats cooked the traditional way. They offer beef, lamb, and pork but also have a choice of seafood fresh from the ocean.
The salad is complimentary, and most locals love dining here because of the huge portions. They also have a selection of cakes and sweets for those with a sweet tooth.
9. By The Wine
Address: Rua das Flores 41- 43, Chiado, Lisbon
Portugal has its own version of tapas, and it’s called pesticos. If you want to try the best pesticos in Lisbon, By the Wine has it. They serve it with sardines, sausages, regional cheese, and Portuguese wine.
It is a flagship store of the winemaker José Maria da Fonseca, and locals and tourists would be remiss not to try the latest flavors.
10. Farol Restaurante
Address: Rua Caminhos de Ferro 106, Alfama, Lisbon
Farol restaurant is near the Santa Apolonia train station in the Alfama neighborhood. It offers traditional fare such as grilled sardines and octopus (polvo a la lagareiro).
It might be simple fare, but the taste, price, and experience make it all worthwhile. You can also try the local beer like the Super Brock here.
11. Time Out Market
Address: Av. 24 de Julho 49, Lisbon
Yes, the Time Out Market has attracted visitors and locals since 2014 with its local fare. You’ll find restaurants with Michelin-starred chefs and local shops offering regional specialties here.
The prices are very affordable, and you can enjoy the atmosphere and eat at communal tables or dining areas. It’s open every day, but lunch and dinner time can be challenging as it tends to get crowded.
12. Das Flores
Address: Rua das Flores 76 78, Lisbon
If you want home-style food, Das Flores is for you. Once an old grocery store, it now offers traditional dishes such as stews, pesticos, empanadas, and more.
It’s very affordable, and the ambiance is very casual. Their seasonal stews and seafood are local favorites, so you can drop by to experience authentic Lisbon flavors.
13. O Caldo Verde
Address: Rua da Esperança 91, Lisbon
If you want a steak dinner, O Caldo Verde offers one of the best in Lisbon. They also have soups, stews, and seafood. You can enjoy popular traditional Portuguese flavors here, especially if you love meat. The steak servings are enormous here! Their steak with garlic is a favorite, and it can easily become yours too.
14. Ze Da Mouraria
Address: R. João do Outeiro 24, Lisbon
This restaurant is in the Moorish Quarter of Lisbon, the Mouraria. A tavern offering traditional dishes, the place uses azulejos or traditional tiles as part of the design.
It’s one of the few remaining tascas in Lisbon, and it’s worth a visit to see the country’s cultural heritage in this part of the city.
15. Mercado de Campo de Ourique
Address: Rua Coelho da Rocha 104, Campo de Ourique, Lisbon
If you want something like the Time Out Market but with more history, try the Mercado de Campo de Ourique. It’s a foodie haven where tradition and the latest trends meet. It has a food market and many stalls selling fresh seafood and meats.
Along the other side, you will find stalls serving tapas, local dishes, and drinks. You will also find several restaurants in the area, like the Petescaria.