Canned fish has gone gourmet in Portugal. There are many speciality shops throughout Lisbon and Porto and you can’t help but be drawn to all of the colorful packaging! We bought quite a few to take with us to enjoy back in Belgium!
Marisqueira Cervejaria Ramiro was one of our must-visit restaurants in Lisbon! We first heard about on Anthony Bourdain’s No Reservations when he was in Lisbon to taste an array of local seafood ending with a prego, or steak sandwich, for “dessert”. It was so delicious we went back again – normally we never repeat restaurants on vacation! But we just had to have those scarlet shrimp again!!
Downtown Lisbon consists of the neighborhoods Bairro Alto, Chiado, and Baixa. We were staying in Alfama, in east Lisbon, and walked downtown to explore these neighborhoods over a few days. On my list of things to see and do included: Praça do Comércio, the Rua Augusta Arch, Ascensor da Gloria and da Bica (didn’t do either – so crowded with tourists!), Jardim de Sao Pedro de Alcantara Miradouro, Café A Brasileira, Livraria Bertrand, and the Elevador de Santa Justa.
I don’t think anyone goes to Lisbon without visiting the Time Out Market. To quote their site:
Have you ever heard of curated burgers? Curated nigiri? Curated pizzas, sandwiches or even curated cod? Probably not. After all, Time Out Market is the first market in the world where everything has been chosen, tasted and tested (with four or five stars, and not one star less) by an independent panel of city experts: Time Out’s own journalists and critics. More than 40 spaces with the leading representatives in all the food categories that help make Lisbon what it is – and tastes – all together under one roof. Find out everything you need to taste – and what Time Out had to say about it.
I read that in Porto you have Port wine and in Lisbon you have ginja, so of course we needed to try this sweet cherry liquor! Like most of the people waiting in line for a shot at A Ginjinha, we first heard about it by watching Anthony Bourdain in Lisbon. Located on Rossio Square, you can try ginja for only a couple of euros – with or without cherries (we preferred with). It was delicious enough for us to drink 4 each, but when it came to bring back a bottle we passed. And be careful – the sweetness makes it easy to go down and then hits when you once you start walking to your next destination 🙂
Sometimes things just work out. While planning for our trip to Portugal, it can get overwhelming try to decide on where to stay in each city. For Lisbon I had debated between Alfama – the eastern part of the city – or a central neighborhood like Chiado or Baixa. Luckily in the end I chose Alfama! What a romantic, beautiful neighborhood!
For my birthday lunch we headed to Gent to eat at the 2 Michelin star Vrijmoed. Koen and I were both really excited to try the vegetarian menu, which was awarded Best Veggie Menu Benelux 2016 and 2017 by Gault Millau. And of course we ordered an extra dessert – the Stilton “sorbet” which was awarded dessert of the year 2017 by Gault Millau. So many award winning dishes to taste!
One of the great things about London is that the museums are free to the public (althought you do have to pay to enter any special exhibitions). We had a few hours to kill before our train, so we headed to The National Gallery, “the story of European art, masterpiece by masterpiece”.
As I mentioned in the Dishoom and Ghymkhana posts, this trip to London is all about Indian food! A few months ago I was at a lunch with an Indian family living in London and I asked for her list of best Indian restaurants. She gave me a list of 10 and I couldn’t wait for my next trip to London! Second to check off the list – Indian Accent!