2 days in Lisbon

We’ll be spending 2 days in Lisbon on our way to Provence. There isn’t much posted recently about Portugal, and I’m sure things have changed a bit since COVID. Please recommend restos, foodie finds, etc. for us to explore. I’m hoping to find a place that would have a wonderful mariscada, and perhaps garlic soup. These are two favorite dishes I really miss from a long-gone Boston area Portuguese restaurant. The Mariscada had a rich, tomato-base with a variety of seafood. The garlic soup was a clear broth with a poached egg and toast floating in it.

I’d also like to bring home some easy to carry souvenirs–perhaps some of the tinned fish I’ve been reading about. Any recommendations for specific varieties or brands?

Also, on our way home from France, we’ll have an overnight stay near the airport before flying home in the morning. We’ll probably be able to get one more dinner in, if we can find a worthwhile place that’s not far from the airport.

Many thanks in advance!


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Lucky you! Here’s a link to a post from a few years back, that I believe will still serve.

Though I didn’t mention it in my post linked above, my husband and I really enjoyed Santa Catarina brand tinned tuna that I brought back. Fished and canned in the Azores.

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Thanks, Denise–just the kind of advice I’m looking for! I’ve just checked ket out the brands and prices at a large store called Portugalia, about 45 from our home near Boston–just for comparison. They carry Santa Catarina for about $6.99/tin. So if we like it, we can get more!


I read that as 1 night near the airport in Lisbon on their way back from France. I could be wrong though.

It did happen once before. :wink:

Now, I re-read again and doubt too, lol. I think you’re right.

The best mariscada in Lisbon is probably at Ramiro, but you might want to look at this article (in Portuguese, but it will give you a choice of the best restaurants for that dish) https://www.timeout.pt/lisboa/pt/restaurantes/mariscadas-em-lisboa
The soup you mention is called either “Sopa Alentejana” or “Açorda a Alentejana” depending on how liquid it is… It is a typical dish of the Alentejo, the Southern province between the Tagus river and the Algarve. So you will only find it there or in specialized restaurants: https://www.timeout.pt/lisboa/pt/restaurantes/os-melhores-restaurantes-alentejanos-em-lisboa.
I am not sure if you are looking for a restaurant near Lisbon airport or near one of the airport in Paris… if in Lisbon, the airport is virtually in town and an easy taxi ride from a lot of great places (including the Michelin starred “Fifty seconds” in the Parque das Nações where the Expo took place). Which hotel will you be staying?

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Thanks for your reply! You seem to understand our travel ways! I’ll follow your links to find out more about these dishes!

On our way to Marseille, we’ll have 2 days (really, almost 3) in Lisbon. We’re thinking of staying in Baixa, and taking cabs or streetcars to various sites, and restos, as one of us has limited tolerance for walking, especially uphill.

Returning from Marseille, we arrive in Lisbon at 7:40 pm, and leave the next morning at 11:45. I’ve reserved at Melia Airport hotel. I’ve found some excellent reviews for a place near the airport called Nico Grilo. It sounds just right for a low-key night out before our flight in the AM.

Thanks again,

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I never use my car in Lisbon… Taxis are plenty and cheap, and the city is quite compact. A great way to explore Lisbon is to take a “Tuk-Tuk”…
I have stayed several times at the Melia in the airport, and their restaurant is very decent and serves good Portuguese specialties (in case you get stuck…).
I don’t know Nico Grilo, but there are also plenty of restaurant in the Parque das Nações which is even closer…


Okay, we’ve narrowed down some choices for our 2 1/2 days in Lisbon, based on recommendations here and in other places. As I’ve mentioned, we like “peasant cooking”–not “tweezer” or molecular gastronomy. We live near Boston with plenty of ethnic options, so we want to focus on places serving local cuisine. We see eating out as one form of entertainment, so the ambiance/setting is important. We’ll be staying very near the Rossio, and will take taxis if necessary. We’ll probably have one “fancy” meal each day. So please steer me away from any big mistakes:
Solar dos Presuntos
Casa do Alentejo
O Faia

We’ve also had great meals at Michelin “Bib Gourmand” places. O Frade is one, Solar dos Nunes is another.

So–any comments? How about you, Monchique?


@mariacarmen might have some input.

Yes, to all 3
Solar dos Presuntos for the very best in black pork (has just been remodeled and they serve Joselito), Casa do Alentejo for its elaborate Moorish decor and traditional (and hearty) cuisine from the Alentejo region
O Faia for fado plus a nice dinner (our concierge sent us there).

We love, love O Frade in Belém. In fact on our recent March trip it was our very best Lisbon meal. Hearty cuisine from the Alentejo with a modern touch–a contemporary tasca. We loved sitting at one of the 14 seats at the semi-circular bar and watching the chefs put the finishing touches on the dishes coming out of the tiny kitchen. Heavenly breads and olive oils, nice wine list with many from the Alentejo, plus delicious walnut cake with ice cream and the best duck rice ever. Highly recommended! But the word is out, so one must reserve. We reserved on The Fork.

In Chiado, you’ll have super traditional dishes at the tiny (and I do mean tiny) Taberna da Rua das Flores, but it’s first come, first served, no rezzies, no c.c.
For lunch you’ll need to get in line by 11:45 to hope to have a seat when they open at noon. For dinner, you’ll need to be in line at least 15 min. minimum in advance to secure a table when they open at 6. (Closed Sundays)
We were the last to be seated at noon. After that, the waitress took names and cell phone numbers to call those on the wait list when a table was vacated.
There are about 20 seats in the front room and only a table for 4 (the only one with tablecloth) and a table for 2 in the back room.

Another tasca that we’ve tried and tried to book without success—O Velho Eurico

On Chowhound a poster (maybe the chef himself?) told me to try to book via their Instagram.
Our concierge tried by phone several times and they never answered but this was in Dec. when they may have been closed for holidays.
O Velho Eurico is number 47 on the 2021 Mesa Marcada’s “Best Restaurants of Portugal list.”

Prado is number 2 on that list and we’ve had wonderful lunches there—not molecular gastronomy but farm to table cuisine with terrific breads. The chef has opened a Mercearia next door, a gourmet deli for take out and also small plates.


Many thanks, Maribel! I’mm going to save your co moments for our NEXT trip to Portugal. I’m quite sure this won’t be our last!

So good to hear from Chowhound posters! oh, Jim Leff, where are you today?

Alcoa pastry in Lisbon. Superb.
BA wine bar in Lisbon, but make reservations.
Ultimate Porto, fish restaurant , by the Port naturally. Lisbon.

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Hi Monchique!
Did you see my newest post with the restos we’ve placed at the top of our Lisbon Eats list? You seem to be very familiar with the food scene in Lisbon. Should we make reservations at these places? Are they needed both for lunch and for dinner? If so, how far in advance will I need to make them? Thanks so much for your help!

Solar dos Presuntos
Casa do Alentejo
O Faia

We’ve also had great meals at Michelin “Bib Gourmand” places. O Frade is one, Solar dos Nunes is another. These might be back up places, if we strike out with the ones above.

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The BA Wine Bar is permanently closed. But… another great wine bar for wines and small plates dining is By The Wine in Chiado at Rua das Flores.
It has a very interesting arched ceiling covered with green glass wine bottles. It was brought to Lisbon by the winemaker José María da Fonseca. It has a long wooden counter and banquette seating where you can sample the different Fonseca regional wines and dine on very creative dishes or just cheese and Iberian charcuterie platters.

Ditto to the recommendation of Alcôa for any number of pastries, plus a new, bijoux pastéis de nata shop, directly across the street–“Castro–Atelier de Pastéis de Nata”. It was named one of the 5 best places for nata this year in Lisbon. There’s a sister branch in Porto.


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BA is closed? That bums me out. We so enjoyed it. It was recommended to us by a bar tender at our fave NYC wine bar Terroir…

Adding the link to Alcoa.

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Sorry Lisa, I am still trying to get used to Hungry Onion’s system, so I missed your post. I would always book in any restaurant… it will get you some recognition and probably a better table :o) The day before for a lunch, or the morning for dinner should be good enough in Lisbon.

Thank you, Ferran! Did you see my “final three” choices? Do you approve?
I made a lunch reservation for Solar dos Presuntos, as we arrive at 10:30 am, will take a taxi from the airport to the Rossio MyStory Hotel. We can’t check in until 3pm, so we’ll drop our luggage there, and walk to Solar dos Presuntos, have lunch and return to the hotel at check in time. It looks like a 15 minutes walk (longer for me—I’m slow), and I’m hoping it won’t be uphill!

Solar dos Presuntos
Casa do Alentejo
O Faia

Thank you for all your tips! They were very helpful!
Lisa Galen

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