Lisbon is home to wide array of excellent restaurants drawing on the magnificent seafood of the Atlantic and the fruits and meats of the surrounding countryside. Modern restaurants with Michelin stars, older establishments with quirky histories, and relaxed bistros and cafes are all to be found in the city. We’ve updated our guide to the 10 best restaurants to present even more of Lisbon’s gastronomical delights.
Tavares remains one of the most refined and opulent places to dine in Lisbon, even after more than two centuries. Originally opened in 1784, the restaurant was taken over by brothers Manuel and Anthony Tavares in 1823. It became a great centre for influential political discussion amongst the Lisbon intelligentsia. A renovation in 1861 saw Venetian mirrors and golden chandeliers added to the décor, and Tavares retains its sumptuous interiors to this day. The menu features contemporary Portuguese flavours with plenty of superb seafood from the Atlantic. You can choose from cod, lobster, mullet or octopus. Meat-lovers can opt for lamb, beef or Iberian pig dishes.
The Clube de Journalistas offers something a little different to diners. It opened in 1983, and journalists often used to hold secret meetings here during the years of the Salazar government. The magnificent building dates back several centuries and oozes history and charm. Intriguingly, the chef was formerly a trumpeter in a symphony orchestra and today likes to work with Mahler and Stravinsky playing in the background. On the menu are dishes such as beef carpaccio, foie gras, mackerel, smoked duck magret, turnip and apple soup, and breaded scarmorza.
The Café de Sao Bento was established in 1982 near the Assembleia da Republica and has been winning press plaudits—including ‘The Best Steak in Lisbon’ by TimeOut—for their superb cuisine ever since. The décor recreates the old-style Lisbon cafés of the 19th century which were famous for serving steaks with pepper sauce—so expect wood-panelling and wonderful old murals. On the menu you will find dishes such as steak and eggs, steaks with garlic and laurel, carpaccio of smoked ham and fish, and smoked salmon.