Lisbon is an epic place for a city break. The reasons are many.
Firstly, you can pick up a beer, a custard tart or a strong coffee for 90 cents (65p) from the multitude of cafes dotted around the city.
Secondly, it’s likely to be warmer than 20°C if you visit between May and October (it hovered around 30°C when we visited mid May).
Thirdly, there’s a load of interesting architecture and street art.
Finally, and most importantly, there’s a ton of tasty stuff to get in your belly.
In addition to Mini Bar, perhaps the best value meal I’ve ever had in a restaurant, here are my Lisbon eating highlights:
Landeau only serves one thing – chocolate cake. And it’s frigging good.
Light sponge is topped with sticky ganache and a dusting of cocoa powder. It’s not too sweet, not too rich and just a little bit salty.
Address - Rua das Flores, No 70 1250-195 Lisbon
Web - http://www.landeau.pt/
Restaurante O Churrasco
Reportedly the best roast chicken to be had in Lisbon, it definitely knocks Nando’s into a cocked hat.
Golden, tender, buttery and citrusy, the roast chicken is served with a cute little pot of fiery chilli oil. The fries are pretty lush too.
Address - Rua das Portas de Santo Antao 83/85, Lisbon
Pastéis de Belém
This is the global epicentre of Portuguese custard tarts. After all, they were invented by the monks of Mosteiro dos Jerónimos which is located just next door in the Lisbon suburb of Belem.
Pastéis de Belém have been baking natas since 1837 and they’re the best I’ve ever eaten. Served warm with a sprinkle of icing sugar and cinnamon, the pastry crunches and custard wobbles in all the right places.
Address - R. Belém 84-92, 1300-085 Lisboa
Web - http://www.pasteisdebelem.pt/
Time Out Market
Time Out’s food court is located in a market in the middle of Lisbon. It’s a great place to sit and eat and booze for an evening.
Highlights included the croqueteria (you can guess what they serve).
A seriously garlicky steak sandwich from O Prego Da Peixaria was served in a soft cake like roll which reminded me a lot of the Geordie stottie.
Santini, who have been serving up Italian gelato to Lisbon since 1949, also have a little stall.
Address - Avenida 24 de Julho, Lisbon
O Lugar is a stylish little bistro located just around the corner from the Time Out market. Their great value lunch menu included bitoque (Portuguese style steak) and a glass of homemade spiced apple ice tea for the princely sum of €8.
A thin cut steak was served with a glistening savoury sauce, a fried egg and grease-free, straight out of the fryer potato crisps.
Address - 265, R. Moeda 1C, 1200-265 Lisbon
Web - http://www.olugar.net/
A final shout out goes to Cave Real, a little neighbourhood restaurant located close to our hotel in the Saldanha area of Lisbon. I wouldn’t schlep across the city to visit but if you find yourself in the area then you’re guaranteed a warm welcome from the veteran waiting team.
Their prawns are fried in what must be a bottle's worth of olive oil and a whole clove of garlic.
And their golden salt cod fritters are served with a whole saucepan of rice and beans. The waiter tops up your plate until you’re ready to pop.
Address - Avenida 5 de Outubro 13, 1050-047 Lisbon
Web - http://restaurantecavereal.pt/pt
I can’t recommend Lisbon enough as a city break destination.