Whether you want to taste traditional Portuguese dishes, buy fresh local goods at the market or sip a cocktail, Lisbon is perfect for the food lovers out there. Famous for its blue skies, steep cobbled street, palaces, churches or even pink tiles, the Portuguese capital is a beautiful and lively place to visit any time of the year. Your experience in Lisbon will not be complete if you don’t have a taste of the local culinary scene. So here are our tips on what not to miss while in Lisbon.
A local favorite: Codfish
Let’s be honest, fish may not be at the top of your list when thinking about food. However, “Bacalhau” (codfish) is the most popular product you will find in Portuguese dishes, and this dates back to the 14th century. It is so popular that locals could tell you 365 ways to cook the dried salted codfish, one for each day of the year !
The love affair with this smelly fish is serious in Lisbon, therefore you will find it in every restaurant and in many different forms. If you want to have a quick taste, you can go to “Casa Portugesa di Pastel de Bacalhau”. There you will find “pastel de Bacalhau”, a traditional codfish cake mixed with the best “Serra da Estrela” cheese. Located on Augusta Street in downtown Lisbon, this place also combines traditions with some elements of classic architecture and an art exhibition, which will make your experience even more enjoyable.
Have a sweet break in Belém
After a long day walking through the steep streets of Lisbon, you might want to have a break in the famous Pasteis de Belém. Located in the heart of the Belem district right next to the Belém garden and the planetarium, this bakery will treat you to some of the most delicious pastries. So take a seat and enjoy a Pastel de Belém, a traditional custard tart made by hand using a traditional and ancient recipe since 1837.
Enjoy the diversity of the Time Out Market
Opened since the 1890’s, Lisbon Mercado da Ribeira is now home to the trendy Time Out Market, an ideal place to hang out, eat and immerse in the local culture. With its 24 restaurants, 8 bars, a dozen shops and a high-end music venue, it has become over the last few years the number one attraction in the Cais de Sodré neighborhood. Even though the format has changed, this market still hosts some of the city’s best-known market vendor of meat fish, fruit and flowers.
Have a taste of the traditional cherry liquor
Finally, you cannot leave Lisbon without trying the famous Ginjinha also named Ginja. It is a traditional liquor made with cherries and served in small cups. Sometimes the cup are even made of chocolate, which takes the tasting to a whole new level. Every bar in the city serves it, but some very small bars are also dedicated to this only, such as “Ginginha do Rossio” the most famous place to taste it.