Food & Drink in Portugal

Portuguese cuisine is very rich, so here are the culinary specialities and types of restaurants you will find on your trip to Portugal.
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Eating in Portugal can be a great pleasure, and this is evident by the number of dishes and specialities that the Portuguese food scene offer to travellers.

The Portuguese cuisine blends scents and flavours from its past made of explorers, seamen, and sailors. From cinnamon to curries, from tomatoes and potatoes coming from the new world to the citruses introduced by the Moors during their conquers, to the continuous presence of the sea that offers high quality fish.

Traditional dishes

Where to eat in Portugal?

Portugal is a very interesting tourist destination by several points of view, including its food scene.

There is something that meets all types of budgets and needs, from family taverns where the owner is grilling sardines directly on the street, to very elegant restaurants. Of course, prices get higher in big cities and in the most popular tourist destinations; however, if you stay in small towns you will save some money.

Portugal loves good wine and good food, and this is clearly tangible by the several types of restaurants that you will find during your holiday. There are not many ethnic restaurants.


These old family run taverns seem like a postcard from the past. These are by far the best places where to try some local cuisine at affordable prices.

You will recognize them straight away as they are made of one single room and just a few tables; Tascas are usually crowded with local people. Many have been restored, however they still keep a very retro appeal.

In Lisbon the term tasca usually refers to old, popular cafes.

Casas de pasto

These are the Portuguese versions of the traditional trattorias; while prices can be slightly higher compared to tascas, these popular restaurants offer a few dishes of the day. Simple, abundant, and at very reasonable prices.

Also in this case the atmosphere is very popular; the TV is often on and elders animately discuss about politics and football.


The equivalent of our pubs where it is possible to enjoy a beer and some traditional dishes.

Informal atmosphere and local customers.


Fish and seafood lovers can’t miss these small restaurants specialized in the art of cooking fish.

Along the coast you will find so many marisquerias and you will recognise them by the several fish tanks inside and the many local families dealing with claws and pincers.


A Brazilian type of restaurants offering grilled meat and juicy steaks.


This term usually refers to high quality restaurants located inside historical and cultural buildings; special atmosphere, refined menu, impeccable service.

It is worth to enjoy at least one dinner at one pousada; despite their high priced reputation, some of them are accessible.

Food and wine tours

The Douro Valley is probably the most popular area for food and wine tourism, but even if you go to Lisbon you can take part in a culinary tour of the city.