Three Weeks in Europe - Lisbon through Food
After an overnight train trip where you dozed the whole time, you’re bound to be hungry, but our first priority was getting to the part of town we were staying in - so we didn’t have to lug our backpacks around with us all day. Once at our hotel, Pousada de Lisboa, we decided we wanted to have a bit of a game-plan, too, so we decided to have breakfast at the hotel where we had access to wifi. They had a good spread of fruits and pastries, along with a good sized breakfast buffet. Also, there was something insanely good about the coffee - and I wish I knew what it was! I had simple coffee with milk, so I’m wondering if it was because the milk in Europe is not pasteurized, but none of the other plain coffee with milk in other simple cafes hit me quite like this! Maybe I’ll figure it out one day… The room that they hold breakfast in has a super high ceiling and a lot of natural light, which helped us wake up, too.
After wandering around for a bit, we wanted to grab a snack. While trying to figure out how the heck to get into St. George’s Castle, we stumbled across Conquistador, where we enjoyed some cold beer (Lisbon was the first HOT day we had), bread and butter, and large plate of buttery shrimp. This hit the spot, especially since we knew we were going to have a big dinner (we didn’t want to eat too much). Also, once we got back to our hotel before dinner, we found that the hotel had left us champagne and chocolate covered strawberries - another perfect snack 😛
My in-laws recommended (and graciously treated us to) dinner at a Michelin star restaurant that evening. 100 Maneiras had a decent sized menu, which included lots of seafood and a large wine list. The restaurant is cozy - there are two floors and we got to sit upstairs. They have some cozy little booths by the windows which we almost got to sit at, but instead we ended up sitting with a good view of the wine cellar. I really enjoyed the ambiance at this restaurant and would gladly eat there again. We ordered two appetizers - prawns with saffron rice and cod nuggets. Nathaniel had a pork entree, while I had squid ink risotto! Everything was delicious - if you’ve never had squid ink, it adds a slight seafood flavor which isn’t overpowering at all. It also makes your tongue darker. 😜 We also had the sommelier come over and help us choose a bottle of wine to pair with our meals. For dessert there was some sort of pumpkin cake, which was also wonderful. Would 100% recommend this place!
The next morning we started with breakfast in the hotel again because it allowed us to have a more mellow morning, and it had been completely satisfying. Plus I wanted more of that coffee!
For lunch we went to another restaurant my in-laws recommended to us called Faca e Garfo. It is much more affordable than the restaurant we had dinner at the night before, and it has more of a family feel to it. The portions are generously sized, too. We split a bottle of Vinho Verde and started with bread and sheep cheese. Nathaniel got tuna steak and I had some delicious octopus, both of which came with potatoes and broccoli. I would absolutely eat here again, too.
We continued our wanderings and decided to stop at a cafe to get “pastel de nata”, custard filled filo tarts that Portugal is known for. Before we went back to the train station, we had to stop by the hotel again to get our backpacks, so we decided to split a burger, some fries, and some beer (so much beer 😉). Since it was a fancy hotel, the food did not disappoint.
We barely scratched the surface, so maybe I need to go back like… now?