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A historic square is packed with diners eating under umbrellas in Porto
Diners in the old town of Porto
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The 34 Essential Porto Restaurants

Find meaty sandwiches, hearty stews, and fresh seafood in all its glory in Portugal’s spectacular northern food city

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Diners in the old town of Porto
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For many tourists, a trip to Portugal begins and ends in Lisbon, but it would be a mistake for hungry travelers to overlook Porto, the capital’s food-loving cousin to the north. The city is known for its enthusiastic eaters and prime location between the Atlantic, Douro River, and mountainous countryside, all providing abundant ingredients from both land and sea. Residents are nicknamed Tripeiros after Porto-style tripe, which comes in a rich stew of beans, sausages, and vegetables. That hearty meal still pales in comparison to the city’s other famous dish, francesinha, a humongous sandwich layered with sausage, ham, steak, and melted cheese.

Meaty stews and sandwiches may help fend off cold winter days, but they also offer an excuse for Tripeiros to gather friends and family around the table to enjoy prized recipes passed down for generations. The city has excitedly welcomed visitors from around the world, but at the same time maintained a remarkable connection to its gastronomic heritage. Many of the region’s traditional dishes can still be found at tascas, beloved corner restaurants where locals mingle at tables or stand at counters while enjoying cheap lunch deals. Even the city’s most successful modern restaurants lean on this culinary heritage, mixing modern touches with traditional ingredients and techniques.

Between the city’s seafood-focused marisqueiras, cervejarias serving petiscos (drinking snacks), and neighborhood tascas, finding a great meal couldn’t be easier. The hard part is deciding where to go first. Here are Porto’s essential dining experiences.

Editor’s Note: Eater is not updating international maps at this time given disruptions to global travel during the COVID-19 crisis.

Prices per person, excluding alcohol:
$ = Less than 20 euros (Less than $22 USD)
$$ = 20 - 50 euros ($22 - $55 USD)
$$$ = 50 - 100 pesos ($55 - $110 USD)
$$$$ = 100 and up ($110 USD and up)

Eater’s bringing this map to life with a trip to Porto, brought to you by Black Tomato. See the full itinerary and book a trip now.

Rafael Tonon is a journalist and food writer living between Brazil and Portugal. He is the author of the forthcoming book The Food Revolutions.


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Note: Restaurants on this map are listed geographically.

1. Casa de Chá da Boa Nova

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Avenida da Liberdade nº 1681, 4450-718 Leça da Palmeira
Porto, Portugal

In a stunning house designed by local Pritzker Architecture Prize-winner Álvaro Siza, Casa de Chá da Boa Nova (Boa Nova Tea House) provides dramatic ocean views with waves crashing against the rocks below. The Michelin-starred restaurant, helmed by acclaimed chef Rui Paula, serves traditional Portuguese dishes, many highlighting local seafood and fish, as well as a vegetarian menu featuring local potatoes, fava beans, and greens. [$$$$]

A formal dining room set inside an angular, swooping, wooden-accented facade sitting right on the sea with the ocean crashing on rocks nearby
The tea house overlooking the sea
Casa de Chá da Boa Nova [Official Photo]

2. Esquina do Avesso

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R. Santa Catarina 102
4450-718 Leça da Palmeira, Portugal

Near the gorgeous Leça da Palmeira beach, Esquina do Avesso serves a mix of creative and traditional recipes in a beautiful industrial space. Chef Nuno Castro highlights rich ingredients like sunchoke and Azorean island cheese, while the seasonal menu mixes traditional recipes with creative reinventions, like the chef’s take on onion soup. Natural light bathes the restaurant’s wood and marble furnishings, while well-made cocktails and a tight wine list round out dinner. [$$]

A sunlit hand holds a shallow slate bowl of various textured and shaped foods, including small spires, tall chips and thick mousse
Cheesecake
Esquina do Avesso [Official Photo]

3. Mercado de Matosinhos

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R. França Júnior
4450-718 Matosinhos, Portugal

The Mercado de Matosinhos supplies the region’s restaurants with the freshest fish: mackerel, sardines, tuna, black swordfish. In this local farmer’s market, vendors sell all sorts of seafood, plus vegetables, flowers, and even live animals to be slaughtered. But the large, modernist, ceramic-paneled building has other surprises, such as the small restaurants worth visiting after browsing the stalls. At Mafalda’s, a cafe serving weekend brunch and lunch dishes like sweet potato lasagna with hummus, all the ingredients come from the local vendors, while Taberna Lusitana offers snacks and glasses of wine. Other venues allow customers to choose directly from trays of fresh fish cooked however they like. [$ - $$]

Three whole fried fishes sit on slices of bread on the left side of a plate beside a salad of onions and tomatoes
Fish from the market with salad
Mercado de Matosinhos/Facebook

4. O Gaveto

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R. Roberto Ivens 824
4450-279 Matosinhos, Portugal

Marisqueiras serve the freshest seafood in Portugal, a country known in Europe for its oceanic specialties. In Porto, they concentrate near the Matosinhos Market, a fisherman’s paradise. O Gaveto is one of the best in the area. Percebes (barnacles), clams, carabineiro (red shrimp), and a myriad of sea creatures look as if they came straight from the aquarium to your plate. Start with stuffed sapateira crab (sweet, delicate crab meat in cream sauce), followed by clams bulhão pato-style (cooked with white wine, olive oil, lemon, garlic, and cilantro). Don’t miss the blue lobster with brothy rice, a rare local delicacy turned into a homey recipe. [$$$]

An L shaped bar set with place settings and wine glasses in front of two fish tanks full of lobsters in a sleek dining room with low lighting
Lobster tanks and the bar at O Gaveto
O Gaveto [Official Photo]

5. Pizzeria Antonio Mezzero

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Av. Menéres 390 / 400
4450-191 Matosinhos, Portugal

Naples-born Antonio Mezzero, winner of the Caputo Cup for top pizzaiolo in 2018, prepares the best pies in the city. At his Matosinhos pizzeria, perfectly thin Neapolitan-style pizzas emerge puffy at the edges and blistered from the wood-burning oven. The menu includes traditional options such as margherita and marinara, but nontraditionalists can also order the Tartufina (mozzarella cheese, white truffle cream, ham, and arugula) or All Stars (cured goat cheese, alheira sausage, and port wine reduction). [$$]

6. O Paparico

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Rua de Costa Cabral 2343
4200-232 Porto, Portugal

As the name suggests (paparicar roughly translates to “pamper”), O Paparico will take good care of you. The traditional restaurant looks like a sophisticated tavern set in a cave, with low light illuminating tables set with white tablecloths and ancient-looking stone walls. Chef Rui Martins highlights the roots of Portuguese cuisine in high-caliber dishes in beautiful, occasionally whimsical plating (the amuse bouche, for example comes in a picnic basket). The Portugalidade (Portugality) tasting menu is the best way to sample seafood and pork from all around the country, as well as local specialty ingredients like Carolino rice. Opt for the wine pairing, which includes rare, unique Portuguese bottlings. [$$$$]

A dimly lit stone wall decorated with black and white images, in front of tables set with white tablecloths and fine place settings
The cave-like interior of O Paparico
O Paparico [Official Photo]

7. Cufra

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Av. da Boavista 2504
4100-119 Porto, Portugal

If you thought Porto residents got heated about the best football team, wait until they expound about their favorite francesinha. Though they may never come to a consensus about which restaurant makes the best iteration, Cufra is a solid contender. At its most basic, the sandwich consists of bread, sausage, ham, cold cuts, and steak, all covered in melted cheese and spicy sauce (made with tomatoes, beer, and other secret ingredients, depending on the restaurant). Some chefs include prawns in the filling, while others use artisanal sausages to enhance the flavor, but Cufra pulls ahead by focusing on the sauce. It’s perfectly spicy, sweet, and sour, balancing the sandwich’s powerful flavors into perfect harmony. [$$]

Melted cheese and sauce covers a mound of other ingredients on a white plate where sauce and meat can be seen pooling
Francesinha Especial
Cufra [Official Photo]

8. Apego

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Rua de Santa Catarina 1198
4000-457 Porto, Portugal

In Portuguese, apego means a great feeling of affection. Chef Aurora Goy lives up to the name, infusing every dish with affection, but also technical skill, original ideas, and elegant execution. The stone walls, soft light, and long bistro-style banquette give the place a cozy atmosphere that pairs well with the Portuguese-accented French cuisine coming out of the small kitchen. Goy’s creations are simple in concept but complex in flavor, with options like oxtail with miso and cucumber, apricot and coriander, or mackerel fillet accompanied by toasted lime mayonnaise. For 30 euros ($33), the tasting menu gives you a chance to enjoy everything from snacks to desserts. [$$]

Three hunks of a sliced open pastry filled with meat, cheese and herbs, sitting on a bed of greens and chunky sauce on a white plate on a wooden table
Fried suckling pig, goat cheese, and watercress
Apego/Facebook

9. Namban Oporto Kitchen Café

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Rua dos Bragas 346
4050-122 Porto, Portugal
915 956 478

Japanese techniques anchor the menu at this cafe on the charming Rua dos Bragas, run by Miguel Cunha and Sako Arao, where the latter prepares comforting recipes from her native Japan. She serves hot, soul-warming dishes from breakfast, including homemade natto and sourdough buckwheat pancakes, and through the afternoon, when the cafe offers cold reimen soup noodles, Japanese curry, and osozai (sweet potato-and-sesame croquettes). [$$]

10. Esporão No Porto

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Rua do Almada 501
4050-039 Porto, Portugal

Esporão began as an important Alentejo winery, but it has grown into a regional powerhouse in southeast Portugal, with properties producing beer and olive oil, as well as a prominent restaurant in Reguengos de Monsaraz. Esporão No Porto is the company’s first venue outside its home. The small space on Rua do Almada looks modern and minimalist, with sleek furniture and plants scattered around, a serene setting to concentrate on the brand’s ingredient-driven cuisine. Menu items take inspiration from Portuguese tradition, like delicate rabbit escabeche, black pork shoulder with celery puree, and an updated take on traditional Portuguese pudding, which incorporates late harvest wine, orange granita, and mint oil. The venue also operates as a store, offering wine, beer, and olive oil tastings. [$$]

A sleek dining room with communal table outfitted with leather-padded benches, colorful two-tops in a sunny corner, plants decorating wooden accents, and an open kitchen where chefs are visible working
The dining room and kitchen
Esporão No Porto [Official Photo]

11. O Buraco

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Rua do Bolhão 95
4000-112 Porto, Portugal

Head to O Buraco (the Hole), a beloved downtown Porto restaurant, to find well-made local dishes, such as the iconic tripas à moda do Porto (Porto-style tripe stew) and delicious veal pie. You may notice some of the beautiful dishes flying out of the kitchen are not listed on the menu, so be sure to ask the waiter for the daily specials, which often include gems like duck rice and fried cow liver with caramelized onions. [$$]

From above a round plate of meat, olives, and vegetables on a bed of rice beneath a sprinkling of cheese, sitting on a white tablecloth in the center of four empty place settings
Duck rice
O Buraco [Official Photo]

12. Catraio

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Rua de Cedofeita 256
4050-174 Porto, Portugal

The extremely casual bar only offers tall stools at the bar and a few sidewalk tables, but the beer selection, which focuses (though not exclusively) on Portuguese craft breweries, absolutely justifies a visit. After finding a favorite brew, you can pick up a few bottles from the shop to drink later. Catraio often welcomes visiting chefs and pop-ups to pair food with whatever is on tap. Look for local breweries like OPO 74 Brewing Co. and Bendita, as well as options from Catalonia and the Basque Country. [$$]

A glass of beer on a coaster on a cement surface with the name of bar Catraio stenciled on the glass
A glass of beer at Catriao
Catraio [Official Photo]

13. Almeja

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Rua de Fernandes Tomás 819
4000-219 Porto, Portugal

In a charming retro building with tile flooring and stone walls, chef João Cura recreates recipes from childhood memories while adding inventive, modern touches. Look for dry-aged beef, potato mille-feuille with braised onions, and roasted wild mushrooms with parsnips. Cura even features an updated, snack-size take on a francesinha made with carrot marinade, and rabanada (French toast) served with truffle and amaretto caviar. [$$$]

A thick rectangle of terrine topped with chopped nuts and flowers sits on a white plate parallel to a long, thin streak of sauce
Pig’s head terrine with pickles and apple
Almeja [Official Photo]

14. Queijaria Do Almada

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Rua do Almada 348
4000 Porto, Portugal

Portugal produces cheeses to rival any from France, Italy, or Switzerland. Queijaria do Almada, situated on one of the city’s most charming streets, boasts great samples of artisan cheese selected by its cheesemongers. The team highlights quality Portuguese dairy products, from the famous buttery cheese of Serra da Estrela, to São Jorge cheese made from the milk of free-roaming cows in the Azores, to stellar sheep and goat cheeses from Azeitão or Serpa. For less nationalist cheese eaters, there are also options from across Europe. [$$]

From above, a cheese board with various cheeses both hard and soft, slices of toast, a small cup of jam, and a sprig of tarragon on top, sitting on a patterned tile floor
A cheese board at Queijaria Do Almada
Queijaria Do Almada/Facebook

15. Mito

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Rua de José Falcão 183
4050-315 Porto, Portugal

At Mito (which means “myth”), chef Pedro Braga proves that it is possible to make haute cuisine at affordable prices. His relaxed, no-frills restaurant is located in the hip Rua da Picaria neighborhood. Tucked in next to trendy venues, Mito offers one of the best deals in town, a complete lunch for around 10 euros and a dinner nearly as affordable, featuring dishes that are both inventive and hearty. The chef utilizes traditional Portuguese recipes and local ingredients, but he also looks to the Mediterranean for inspiration in couscous and moussaka, among other global tastes. [$ - $$]

A wooden table covered with various dishes of meat, vegetables and stews
A full dinner spread at Mito
Estúdio Cozinha/Facebook

16. Masseira

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R. de Diogo Brandão 69
4050-381 Porto, Portugal

Portugal has a well-established reputation for producing good bread, but only recently has the country seen slow-leavened sourdough loaves become more popular. Masseira is one pioneer of the style in Porto. The bakery inhabits a small space in the Cedofeita neighborhood with white-tile walls and wooden shelves. There, Benedita Saavedra and Adriano Sequeira take turns baking and selling loaves to their growing clientele. Saavedra used to sell bread in the hip Porto Belo Market, before the couple decided to open a permanent space where customers can find their famous breads made of sweet potato, rice, wheat, and rye, as well as local ingredients such as fig and negrinha do freixo olives. [$]

A hand holds a loaf, split open during baking, over a tray of other loaves blurred in the background
Fresh loaves
Masseira/Facebook

17. Le Monument

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Av. dos Aliados 151
4000-064 Porto, Portugal

The elegant Monumental Palace Hotel enlisted French chef Julien Montbabut to create monumental food befitting the hotel’s restaurant. With experience in Paris at Pavillon Ledoyen and Le Restaurant, Montbabut plays to his strengths, making classic French dishes with Portuguese vegetables and seafood. The butter, sourced from Nantes, arrives like a guest of honor. Spotted with sea lettuce and dulse flakes, it perfectly complements the house-made bread in the couvert (bread service). Other notable dishes include Portuguese crab with avocado and yuzu, roosterfish cooked in butter with artichoke and sea urchin, and a local beef entrecote (rib-eye) that serves two. The wine list is excellent, with many local bottles, as are the inventive desserts. [$$$$]

A square of tartare with slices of radish sticking out of it sits on a geometric grayscale plate on a black background
Steak tartare
Le Monument [Official Photo]

18. Tasquinha Zé Povinho

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R. de Clemente Meneres nº36
4050-522 Porto, Portugal

This neighborhood tasca serves comfort food drawn from the owner’s heritage in Trás-os-Montes. The daily rotating menu might feature regional dishes like breaded pork with roasted potatoes, massa à lavrador (meaty stew with pasta and red beans), or caldo verde (potato-kale soup). With its casual furnishings and checkered tablecloths, the restaurant in Carregal Garden feels like a special local hideaway far from the tourist crowds. [$]

A decorated dish with meat and potatoes, with a basket of bread and a bowl of olives, along with a mug and pitcher on a checkered tablecloth
Meat and potatoes with sautéed vegetables and olives
Tasquinha Zé Povinho/Facebook

19. Época Cafe

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Rua do Rosário 22
4050-522 Porto, Portugal
913 732 038

There’s more to this Nordic-style cafe than paper lanterns and pour-overs. The all-day eatery serves an organic, local, plant-based menu, driven by the seasons and the kitchen’s creativity. The options range across salads, sandwiches, Turkish eggs, fish and chips, cakes, and much more, all perfect to snack on as you sit by the windows watching life pass by on the street outside. [$$]

20. Tasca Vasco

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R. de Sá de Noronha 61
4050-527 Porto, Portugal

Tasca Vasco is the newest project from the esteemed Cafeína Group. The stylish tapas bar looks like a midcentury modern shipping container, while the kitchen serves a smart menu of shareable small plates like grilled octopus, gizzards with garlic toast, shredded cod with chickpeas, and headcheese with beans. Cocktails and sangria complete the buzzy, cheerful experience. [$$]

A decorative dish with two large prawns in oil with a slice of lemon beside a wax paper-lined copper pan full of french fries on a wooden tabletop
Prawns and fries
Tiago Lessa/Grupo Cafeína

21. The Royal Cocktail Club

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Rua da Fábrica 105
4050-247 Porto, Portugal

The Royal Cocktail Club is situated in the touristy Baixa neighborhood, set in an old bankers’ union building, with an elegant interior decked out in wood, marble, and bronze. The cocktail list is modern and creative, thanks to head bartender Nelson de Matos and his team, who create drinks like the Black Cask (whiskey, lemon, stout, egg white, and chocolate bitters) and the Espresso to São Paulo (cachaca, vermouth, and coffee). In the basement below the restaurant, you’ll find a private room with another bar exclusively serving signature cocktails. [$$]

A wooden-looking highball glass with a bright fake bird perched on the rim near a flower garnish and straw sticking out of a drink of crushed ice
A tropical cocktail at the Royal Cocktail Club
The Royal Cocktail Club/Facebook

22. Euskalduna Studio

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R. de Santo Ildefonso 404
4000-466 Porto, Portugal

Vasco Coelho Santos is one of the best chefs in town. After stints at Mugaritz and El Bulli, he decided to return home to open a restaurant of his own. Euskalduna has an intimate dining room, built around a chef’s counter, which gives diners the feeling of being invited to a talented friend’s home. Coelho Santos searches the world for inspiration without taking his eyes off his homeland. His recipes incorporate Asian and Spanish flavors and techniques, but the focus remains on Portuguese produce and dishes rooted in tradition. [$$$$]

Diners sit at an illuminated chef’s counter with dishes, blurred, laid out in various steps of preparation with a darkened dining room and servers visible beyond
The chef’s counter
UnderCover

23. Pedro Limão

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R. do Morgado de Mateus 51/53
4000-334 Porto, Portugal

Unlike many hotel restaurants, Pedro Limão is an eatery first and an inn second, with six apartments above the dining space that act almost as extensions of the culinary program. Eponymous chef Pedro Limão offers guests cocktails and snacks during check-in and serves his tasting menu as room service. If you’re just stopping by for dinner at the “non-restaurant” though, you’ll find menu items focused on Portuguese ingredients like an ode to potato’s many forms (potato served with potato mayonnaise, smoked sweet potato, and potato pickles); pork belly served with salted marshmallow; and cow tongue served with mashed peas. [$$]

A shallow ceramic dish with a small cylindrical mound of white beans and meat, beside a glass of red wine in front of an old-looking exposed brick wall
Beans and ham with chestnut-purslane pesto
Pedro Limão [Official Photo]

24. A Cozinha do Manel

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Rua do Heroísmo 215
4300-253 Porto, Portugal

This family-run establishment has been serving wood-fired fare since 1985. The counter is the best place to taste the excellent food coming out of the kitchen, but there are set tables for larger groups as well. Start with Serpa cheese and roast lamb, then move on to mains such as veal and potatoes roasted for hours over wood. Finish with rabanadas or creme do céu, which consists of mousse, biscuits, and creamy egg custard. [$$]

A counter with decorated illuminated tile beneath the bar and attached bar stools, a well stocked bar with pots hanging above, a tile floor, walls decorated with framed art, and baskets hanging from the exposed wood rafters
The counter, the best place for a meal
Sara Vingadas

25. Casa Guedes

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Praça dos Poveiros 130
4000-393 Porto, Portugal

Casa Guedes has earned a great reputation for its pork-leg sandwich. Servers slice the meat ​​into ridiculously tender strips and arrange them in lightly toasted, crispy bread. The long line snaking on the sidewalk is a clear indication of the sandwich’s merits, but you should also queue up for the shop’s tasca-style daily meals. Options may include caldo verde or papas de sarrabulho (pig-blood soup) for under 10 euros ($11). Pair any meal with assorted cured meats and cheeses, and a cold bottle of local sparkling wine. [$]

A man holds out a plate with both hands bearing a pork sandwich on thick crusty bread
The famed pork leg sandwich
Casa Guedes/Facebook

26. Cervejaria Gazela

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Tv. Cimo de Vila 4 10
4000-171 Porto, Portugal

Cachorrinho is the Porto answer to the hot dog. Thin crusty bread is stuffed with fresh sausage, grilled, brushed with a spicy sauce (often made with piri piri and butter), and cut into bite-sized pieces. A lot of restaurants offer newer takes on the simple dish, but stick with tradition at Cervejaria Gazela, a legendary snack bar opened in Praça da Batalha in 1962. Be sure to order some french fries and a fino (tap beer) to go alongside. [$]

Several plates of cachorrinhos (hot dogs stuffed in chopped bread with cheese) sit on a kitchen counter
Cachorrinhos
Cervejaria Gazela [Official Photo]

27. Bird of Passage Coffee

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R. do Duque de Loulé 185-187
4000-325 Porto, Portugal

After working in Australia, South Africa, and Uruguay, Belgian barista Paolo Guffens set up shop in Porto. At his cafe not far from Praça da Batalha, he serves some of the best coffee in town. A playful illustration along one wall, fixed gear bikes stacked in the corner, and a communal table give the space a restful hipster vibe. The smell of coffee mixes with the smells of cooking from the open kitchen, where the team prepares healthy brunch-style bites like sandwiches and avocado toast, as well as local comfort dishes like empanadas and rabanadas. Guffens sources beans from the best roasters in Europe, but look out for Senzu, the proprietor’s own brand, which he roasts in the back of the shop. [$]

Two branded mugs sit beneath an espresso maker
Fresh espresso on the way
Bird of Passage Coffee [Official Photo]

28. Loja das Conservas

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R. de Mouzinho da Silveira 240
4050-417 Porto, Portugal

Visitors can’t leave Portugal without picking up some tins of fish, a beloved staple of the everyday Portuguese diet since the mid-19th century. The preserved fish travel beautifully, and they come in handy when trying to make dinner from an empty pantry. Loja das Conservas is the best place to stock up on the iconic staple. The store arrays horse mackerel, anchovies, eels, and much more in colorful tins from every region of the country. If you want tuna from the Azores, octopus from Algarve, or local sardines, you’ve come to the right place. [$]

Rows of canned sardines on a shelf
Cans of sardines
Loja das Conservas/Facebook

29. Shiko

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R. do Sol 238
4000-529 Porto, Portugal

This lively venue merges Japanese cuisine with the minimal, casual atmosphere of a Portuguese tasca. Chef Ruy Leão offers sushi and hot share plates inspired by izakaya fare. He makes use of local tuna, sardines, and the rest of the daily catch. Winners from the hot dishes include eggplant roasted in miso and okonomiyaki. [$$$]

A round stone-looking plate with thin slices of fish topped with a colorful barrage of herbs, sauces and other garnishes
Tuna sashimi
Ruy Leão

30. Belos Aires Restaurante

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R. de Belomonte 104
4050-600 Porto, Portugal

Argentinian chef Mauricio Ghiglione brings the smoky flavors of his homeland to the parrilla (grill) at Belos Aires. He also incorporates Portuguese accents, like codfish breaded, roasted, and served with chickpea puree. But the real highlights of the menu are his meats, especially the chorizo and rib-eye. If you come craving Argentinian classics, know that Ghiglione also prepares amazing empanadas and a dulce de leche flan that is to die for. [$$$]

Beneath rosy lights, a large cut of sliced stake on a long plate beside wedges of potato, with cobs of corn and other ingredients blurred in the background
Steak and potatoes
Belos Aires Restaurante [Official Photo]

31. Taberna Dos Mercadores

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R. dos Mercadores 36
4000 Porto, Portugal

Situated in a narrow alley just off the frenetic streets of the riverside area, Taberna dos Mercados serves traditional regional dishes to about 20 lucky people, so be sure to book a table in advance. Order a bowl of seafood açorda, a popular bread soup made with prawns, clams, and cockles, or the Portuguese cozido, stewed lamb with potatoes and greens. The wine list favors bottles from the nearby Douro Valley. [$$]

32. Restaurante Casario

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R. de Cima do Muro 61
4050-200 Porto, Portugal

Named for (and seated among) the traditional casarios townhouses that characterize the riverside area of the city, this refined restaurant starkly contrasts the neighborhood’s many tourist traps. Local chef Miguel Castro e Silva serves a seasonal menu based around traditional Portuguese dishes like bacalhau à gomes de sá, a codfish casserole in which the chef expertly deploys fish gelatin. He also uses Portuguese-style marinade (olive oil, lemon, and pepper) on slices of fresh sea bass, and incorporates light-as-air Serra da Estrela cheese into his delicious mille-feuille. Sit on the patio where you can really enjoy the restaurant’s stunning views of the Douro River. [$$$]

An outdoor patio with tables beneath umbrellas with a river, trees and the city beyond
The patio overlooking the Douro
Restaurante Casario [Official Photo]

33. Enoteca 17•56

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R. de Serpa Pinto 44B
4400-307 Vila Nova de Gaia, Portugal

In Vila Nova de Gaia, on the south side of the Douro river, you’ll find many traditional port wineries, including Real Companhia Velha. The winery is set in a renovated warehouse that also houses a museum and Enoteca 17.56, an elegant, airy restaurant on the top floor. The kitchen, led by chef Jerónimo Pinto de Abreu, focuses on seafood and fish. There’s classic lobster bisque, as well as mussels with celery mousse and crispy capers. The wine list is a highlight, with antique vintage bottles on offer, alongside dozens of labels produced by the winery. Even if you don’t need a full meal, stop by for a glass of Port and tonic as you look out over the river. [$$$]

A bar with velvet blue stools and gold backlighting highlighting an architectural display of wine bottles
The bar at Enoteca 17•56
Enoteca 17•56 [Official Photo]

34. The Yeatman

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Rua do Choupelo
4400-088 Vila Nova de Gaia, Portugal

In the luxurious, wine-focused hotel of the same name in Vila Nova de Gaia, you’ll find the two-Michelin-starred Yeatman restaurant. Under the command of chef Ricardo Costa, the restaurant serves three tasting menus, encompassing traditional flavors of Portuguese cuisine with modern flair and seasonal produce. The wine pairings are predictably fantastic, drawn from a cellar packed with rare bottlings. If that weren’t enough, every meal comes with a stunning view of the Douro River and the Porto skyline. [$$$$]

An octopus tentacle rests on a mound of other ingredients in a dark sauce on a neutral background
Octopus
The Yeatman [Official Photo]

1. Casa de Chá da Boa Nova

Avenida da Liberdade nº 1681, 4450-718 Leça da Palmeira, Porto, Portugal
A formal dining room set inside an angular, swooping, wooden-accented facade sitting right on the sea with the ocean crashing on rocks nearby
The tea house overlooking the sea
Casa de Chá da Boa Nova [Official Photo]

In a stunning house designed by local Pritzker Architecture Prize-winner Álvaro Siza, Casa de Chá da Boa Nova (Boa Nova Tea House) provides dramatic ocean views with waves crashing against the rocks below. The Michelin-starred restaurant, helmed by acclaimed chef Rui Paula, serves traditional Portuguese dishes, many highlighting local seafood and fish, as well as a vegetarian menu featuring local potatoes, fava beans, and greens. [$$$$]

Avenida da Liberdade nº 1681, 4450-718 Leça da Palmeira
Porto, Portugal

2. Esquina do Avesso

R. Santa Catarina 102, 4450-718 Leça da Palmeira, Portugal
A sunlit hand holds a shallow slate bowl of various textured and shaped foods, including small spires, tall chips and thick mousse
Cheesecake
Esquina do Avesso [Official Photo]

Near the gorgeous Leça da Palmeira beach, Esquina do Avesso serves a mix of creative and traditional recipes in a beautiful industrial space. Chef Nuno Castro highlights rich ingredients like sunchoke and Azorean island cheese, while the seasonal menu mixes traditional recipes with creative reinventions, like the chef’s take on onion soup. Natural light bathes the restaurant’s wood and marble furnishings, while well-made cocktails and a tight wine list round out dinner. [$$]

R. Santa Catarina 102
4450-718 Leça da Palmeira, Portugal

3. Mercado de Matosinhos

R. França Júnior, 4450-718 Matosinhos, Portugal
Three whole fried fishes sit on slices of bread on the left side of a plate beside a salad of onions and tomatoes
Fish from the market with salad
Mercado de Matosinhos/Facebook

The Mercado de Matosinhos supplies the region’s restaurants with the freshest fish: mackerel, sardines, tuna, black swordfish. In this local farmer’s market, vendors sell all sorts of seafood, plus vegetables, flowers, and even live animals to be slaughtered. But the large, modernist, ceramic-paneled building has other surprises, such as the small restaurants worth visiting after browsing the stalls. At Mafalda’s, a cafe serving weekend brunch and lunch dishes like sweet potato lasagna with hummus, all the ingredients come from the local vendors, while Taberna Lusitana offers snacks and glasses of wine. Other venues allow customers to choose directly from trays of fresh fish cooked however they like. [$ - $$]

R. França Júnior
4450-718 Matosinhos, Portugal

4. O Gaveto

R. Roberto Ivens 824, 4450-279 Matosinhos, Portugal
An L shaped bar set with place settings and wine glasses in front of two fish tanks full of lobsters in a sleek dining room with low lighting
Lobster tanks and the bar at O Gaveto
O Gaveto [Official Photo]

Marisqueiras serve the freshest seafood in Portugal, a country known in Europe for its oceanic specialties. In Porto, they concentrate near the Matosinhos Market, a fisherman’s paradise. O Gaveto is one of the best in the area. Percebes (barnacles), clams, carabineiro (red shrimp), and a myriad of sea creatures look as if they came straight from the aquarium to your plate. Start with stuffed sapateira crab (sweet, delicate crab meat in cream sauce), followed by clams bulhão pato-style (cooked with white wine, olive oil, lemon, garlic, and cilantro). Don’t miss the blue lobster with brothy rice, a rare local delicacy turned into a homey recipe. [$$$]

R. Roberto Ivens 824
4450-279 Matosinhos, Portugal

5. Pizzeria Antonio Mezzero

Av. Menéres 390 / 400, 4450-191 Matosinhos, Portugal

Naples-born Antonio Mezzero, winner of the Caputo Cup for top pizzaiolo in 2018, prepares the best pies in the city. At his Matosinhos pizzeria, perfectly thin Neapolitan-style pizzas emerge puffy at the edges and blistered from the wood-burning oven. The menu includes traditional options such as margherita and marinara, but nontraditionalists can also order the Tartufina (mozzarella cheese, white truffle cream, ham, and arugula) or All Stars (cured goat cheese, alheira sausage, and port wine reduction). [$$]

Av. Menéres 390 / 400
4450-191 Matosinhos, Portugal

6. O Paparico

Rua de Costa Cabral 2343, 4200-232 Porto, Portugal
A dimly lit stone wall decorated with black and white images, in front of tables set with white tablecloths and fine place settings
The cave-like interior of O Paparico
O Paparico [Official Photo]

As the name suggests (paparicar roughly translates to “pamper”), O Paparico will take good care of you. The traditional restaurant looks like a sophisticated tavern set in a cave, with low light illuminating tables set with white tablecloths and ancient-looking stone walls. Chef Rui Martins highlights the roots of Portuguese cuisine in high-caliber dishes in beautiful, occasionally whimsical plating (the amuse bouche, for example comes in a picnic basket). The Portugalidade (Portugality) tasting menu is the best way to sample seafood and pork from all around the country, as well as local specialty ingredients like Carolino rice. Opt for the wine pairing, which includes rare, unique Portuguese bottlings. [$$$$]

Rua de Costa Cabral 2343
4200-232 Porto, Portugal

7. Cufra

Av. da Boavista 2504, 4100-119 Porto, Portugal
Melted cheese and sauce covers a mound of other ingredients on a white plate where sauce and meat can be seen pooling
Francesinha Especial
Cufra [Official Photo]

If you thought Porto residents got heated about the best football team, wait until they expound about their favorite francesinha. Though they may never come to a consensus about which restaurant makes the best iteration, Cufra is a solid contender. At its most basic, the sandwich consists of bread, sausage, ham, cold cuts, and steak, all covered in melted cheese and spicy sauce (made with tomatoes, beer, and other secret ingredients, depending on the restaurant). Some chefs include prawns in the filling, while others use artisanal sausages to enhance the flavor, but Cufra pulls ahead by focusing on the sauce. It’s perfectly spicy, sweet, and sour, balancing the sandwich’s powerful flavors into perfect harmony. [$$]

Av. da Boavista 2504
4100-119 Porto, Portugal

8. Apego

Rua de Santa Catarina 1198, 4000-457 Porto, Portugal
Three hunks of a sliced open pastry filled with meat, cheese and herbs, sitting on a bed of greens and chunky sauce on a white plate on a wooden table
Fried suckling pig, goat cheese, and watercress
Apego/Facebook

In Portuguese, apego means a great feeling of affection. Chef Aurora Goy lives up to the name, infusing every dish with affection, but also technical skill, original ideas, and elegant execution. The stone walls, soft light, and long bistro-style banquette give the place a cozy atmosphere that pairs well with the Portuguese-accented French cuisine coming out of the small kitchen. Goy’s creations are simple in concept but complex in flavor, with options like oxtail with miso and cucumber, apricot and coriander, or mackerel fillet accompanied by toasted lime mayonnaise. For 30 euros ($33), the tasting menu gives you a chance to enjoy everything from snacks to desserts. [$$]

Rua de Santa Catarina 1198
4000-457 Porto, Portugal

9. Namban Oporto Kitchen Café

Rua dos Bragas 346, 4050-122 Porto, Portugal

Japanese techniques anchor the menu at this cafe on the charming Rua dos Bragas, run by Miguel Cunha and Sako Arao, where the latter prepares comforting recipes from her native Japan. She serves hot, soul-warming dishes from breakfast, including homemade natto and sourdough buckwheat pancakes, and through the afternoon, when the cafe offers cold reimen soup noodles, Japanese curry, and osozai (sweet potato-and-sesame croquettes). [$$]

Rua dos Bragas 346
4050-122 Porto, Portugal

10. Esporão No Porto

Rua do Almada 501, 4050-039 Porto, Portugal
A sleek dining room with communal table outfitted with leather-padded benches, colorful two-tops in a sunny corner, plants decorating wooden accents, and an open kitchen where chefs are visible working
The dining room and kitchen
Esporão No Porto [Official Photo]

Esporão began as an important Alentejo winery, but it has grown into a regional powerhouse in southeast Portugal, with properties producing beer and olive oil, as well as a prominent restaurant in Reguengos de Monsaraz. Esporão No Porto is the company’s first venue outside its home. The small space on Rua do Almada looks modern and minimalist, with sleek furniture and plants scattered around, a serene setting to concentrate on the brand’s ingredient-driven cuisine. Menu items take inspiration from Portuguese tradition, like delicate rabbit escabeche, black pork shoulder with celery puree, and an updated take on traditional Portuguese pudding, which incorporates late harvest wine, orange granita, and mint oil. The venue also operates as a store, offering wine, beer, and olive oil tastings. [$$]

Rua do Almada 501
4050-039 Porto, Portugal

11. O Buraco

Rua do Bolhão 95, 4000-112 Porto, Portugal
From above a round plate of meat, olives, and vegetables on a bed of rice beneath a sprinkling of cheese, sitting on a white tablecloth in the center of four empty place settings
Duck rice
O Buraco [Official Photo]

Head to O Buraco (the Hole), a beloved downtown Porto restaurant, to find well-made local dishes, such as the iconic tripas à moda do Porto (Porto-style tripe stew) and delicious veal pie. You may notice some of the beautiful dishes flying out of the kitchen are not listed on the menu, so be sure to ask the waiter for the daily specials, which often include gems like duck rice and fried cow liver with caramelized onions. [$$]

Rua do Bolhão 95
4000-112 Porto, Portugal

12. Catraio

Rua de Cedofeita 256, 4050-174 Porto, Portugal
A glass of beer on a coaster on a cement surface with the name of bar Catraio stenciled on the glass
A glass of beer at Catriao
Catraio [Official Photo]

The extremely casual bar only offers tall stools at the bar and a few sidewalk tables, but the beer selection, which focuses (though not exclusively) on Portuguese craft breweries, absolutely justifies a visit. After finding a favorite brew, you can pick up a few bottles from the shop to drink later. Catraio often welcomes visiting chefs and pop-ups to pair food with whatever is on tap. Look for local breweries like OPO 74 Brewing Co. and Bendita, as well as options from Catalonia and the Basque Country. [$$]

Rua de Cedofeita 256
4050-174 Porto, Portugal

13. Almeja

Rua de Fernandes Tomás 819, 4000-219 Porto, Portugal
A thick rectangle of terrine topped with chopped nuts and flowers sits on a white plate parallel to a long, thin streak of sauce
Pig’s head terrine with pickles and apple
Almeja [Official Photo]

In a charming retro building with tile flooring and stone walls, chef João Cura recreates recipes from childhood memories while adding inventive, modern touches. Look for dry-aged beef, potato mille-feuille with braised onions, and roasted wild mushrooms with parsnips. Cura even features an updated, snack-size take on a francesinha made with carrot marinade, and rabanada (French toast) served with truffle and amaretto caviar. [$$$]

Rua de Fernandes Tomás 819
4000-219 Porto, Portugal

14. Queijaria Do Almada

Rua do Almada 348, 4000 Porto, Portugal
From above, a cheese board with various cheeses both hard and soft, slices of toast, a small cup of jam, and a sprig of tarragon on top, sitting on a patterned tile floor
A cheese board at Queijaria Do Almada
Queijaria Do Almada/Facebook

Portugal produces cheeses to rival any from France, Italy, or Switzerland. Queijaria do Almada, situated on one of the city’s most charming streets, boasts great samples of artisan cheese selected by its