Tapabento

In downtown Porto, this restaurant and tapas bar is a favourite among locals. Naturally, order the entire menu to try everything from mussels, oysters and clams to carpaccio and cured meats. It endeavours to provide locally sourced food, so browse the à la carte menu or ask for the chef’s daily suggestions for the latest fresh produce, and don’t forget to have a drink on the terrace before you leave.

O Paparico

The phrase “hidden gem” has never been so true than at O Paparico. Located 10 minutes outside the city centre, the restaurant is set inside a house, with an entirely unassuming exterior and no signs denoting what lies inside. Ring the doorbell to be permitted entry, where Portuguese gastronomy is taken to new heights. Seasonal produce is incorporated into innovatively curated menus, and the resident sommelier expertly pairs each dish with exclusive wine from the restaurant’s own cellar.

Fábrica Coffee Roasters

Determined to put Portugal on the map for coffee lovers, Fábrica has three locations across Lisbon and Porto. Come for a cup of gourmet coffee made with home-roasted beans, or stop by for a delicious brunch at its cute café.

Adega São Nicolau

Surprise your travel buddies by taking them to this local legend. Featuring traditional Portuguese food, the menu offers a variety of delicious mains and homemade desserts. Ask for a table outside for views across the Douro, or if this restaurant is booked up (which it often is), try either of Adega São Nicolau’s sister restaurants, Terreiro or Taberna dos Mercadores, for food equally as delicious.

Ichiban

This Japanese restaurant is located right by the sea. Enjoy copious amounts of sushi, sashimi and miso soup on traditional wooden tables and benches before wandering (read: waddling) around the picturesque streets and sandy beaches of Foz.

Flow

This restaurant sits inside a decadent neo-Arabic building in the depths of downtown Porto. It’s decked out with original arcades, balusters, pillars and tiling, so entering feels somewhat like stepping back in time to a world of ancient sophistication. Head to the restaurant for Mediterranean cuisine, and follow your meal with a trip to the terrace bar.

Puro 4050

Bringing a taste of Italy to Porto’s city centre, Puro 4050 is Portugal’s first dedicated mozzarella bar. Choose between different varieties of the well-loved cheese paired with Italian delicacies such as Parma prosciutto or Italian chicory.

Vinum Restaurant & Wine Bar

Owned by Graham’s Port, this restaurant is located in the foodie Trás-os-Montes area of Porto. It’s the winner of countless awards for its wine selection, so come for food made with locally sourced ingredients and fish straight for the Matosinhos harbour, all paired with carefully selected varietals.

Enoteca 17.56

If evenings spent taste-testing countless glasses of exquisite wines accompanied by fusion cuisine sounds like you’re kind of thing, then make a beeline for Enoteca 17.56. For more than 260 years, Real Companhia Velha has been cultivating its well-earned reputation as the authority on good wine and drink. Come to its for tasting sessions in the wine cellar and a wide variety of cuisine choices, from seafood and sushi to pasta and focaccia.

  • +351 22 244 8500
  • Go to Website
  • Alameda da Rua Serpa Pinto 44B
    4400-012

Pedro Lemos

This restaurant is named after the chef who won his first Michelin star at the end of 2014. Seven years ago no one knew who he was – but now the restaurant struggles to accommodate the constant stream of reservations. Pedro Lemos is absolutely mandatory for gourmand travellers. After he received this recognition, he closed up for a few weeks and changed the entire restaurant, renewing the house, located in a tiny, narrow alley in Foz Velha – an old, charming district near the river. Another tasty place to eat is the place where chef Lemos was when he learned about his Michelin star recognition: Stash – The Sandwich Room. It’s a little sandwich shack that Pedro and his wife developed downtown. It is located in the heart of Porto with fair prices and remarkable sandwiches like the buttered crab and lobster – homage to a typical Portuguese ritual: buttered toast with seafood.

Reitoria

This restaurant is divided across two floors. The first floor is perfect for an after-work drink. It contains a wine bar with a list of focaccia that you can stuff with roast beef, vegetables or truffled sausage and they have a selection of cheese boards. On the upper floor you’ll find a meat realm, with Porto’s best steaks, chops and other cuts of meat. If you are aiming for a relaxed evening, you should call and ask for a spot at the beautiful hidden terrace just outside the restaurant. If you’re a game type of person, than the steakhouse is the best option. There you can choose the meat by the kilogram and add as many side dishes as you can eat.

Cantina 32

Luís Américo was one of the first Porto chefs to view food with through a fun and unpretentious lens. How? First he launched a forneria – a pizzeria with a wood oven – with no tools or cutlery on the table. He encouraged diners to eat with their hands, chat to friends, share food – and if you really needed a knife you could pick one from a vintage can at the table. He applied this same approach to all of his businesses. First a cervejaria (a typical Portuguese restaurant with beer and seafood) at Mercado Ferreira Borges near Ribeira, where you can grab a bottle of beer from your own ice bucket. Cantina 32 is located on a recently turned pedestrian street in the city called Rua das Flores. At Cantina 32 the tables are long with room for groups of friends or strangers who may very well become friends by the end of the night. The restaurant’s atmosphere has a nice contrast between its concrete walls and vintage armchairs. You can taste a multitude of creative dishes, some of them divided as ‘proposals for two people who are not very hungry’ or ‘suggestions for two people who are starving’. You can also eat ‘dirt’ here. Well, not dirt, but Oreo dust served in a clay vessel with a surprise cheesecake underneath.

Nabos da Púcara

This is what you call an authentic Porto bistro. Nabos da Púcara is a place which only uses Portuguese ingredients – it’s also a grocery store, so you can eat in or take it home – and it stocks a variety of products from local producers. You should try anything and everything. They combine less noble products with exquisite cooking techniques and get perfect results. This restaurant may have the best quality-to-price ratio in the city. Scout’s honour.

Zé Bota

Zé Bota has marvellous Portuguese food – just how mama would’ve made it. It’s a difficult task recommending dishes because they are almost impossible to translate, that’s how genuine they are. Bacalhau à braga is fried codfish with caramelised onions, peppers and perfect chips; polvo à lagareiro is roasted octopus with olive-oil sauce, garlic and grilled potatoes; and costela mendinha is tender veal chops slowly cooked in the oven before a long marinade. We could keep going, but it’s making us hungry…

  • +351 918 807 154
  • Travessa do Carmo, 16
    4050-165

Casa Guedes

If we had to choose one thing to do in Porto, and one thing only, eating at Casa Guedes would be it. This is the worst place on earth to take a date or your parents for lunch. It is filthy, crowded, noisy, old and ugly, but they happen to serve the best pork sandwich in the whole world. Plan your visit there with caution. Choose an off mealtime hour – 4PM in the afternoon would be great – and get in line. Ask for “sandes de pernil” with or without artisanal cheese, a bottle of white wine and cheese with pumpkin jam for dessert. You’ll probably find a table outside or, if you’re lucky, you can sit at the counter and drool while Mr Cesar slices the massive, juicy pork leg.

Café Santiago

Well, well, well, here is what you’ve been waiting for: where to eat a francesinha? Travelling to Porto and leaving without a big francesinha in your gut is an unforgivable sin. And Santiago is the best place to fulfil that task. You’ll have to wait to get a table (don’t even try to make a reservation). You should get there early: at 11.30AM for lunch or 6.30PM for dinner. Go for a seat at the counter to watch the cooking process of this incredible meaty, cheesy sandwich, ask for a beer (or ‘fino’ if you want to pretend to be local) and finish the whole thing or the waiter will mock you.

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