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Lisbon is one of Europe's fastest changing cities and hottest capitals. Visiting during its coming-of-age means seeing what's ahead, while still feeling immersed in its colorful history. Our list of Lisbon's best places to eat touches on all of it.
Prado: One of Baixa’s newest dining destinations, Prado is injecting new life into this traditional, calçada-lined neighborhood.
Bota Sal: The team behind beloved seaside Sal Restaurante in Comporta has finally opened Bota Sal, a more youthful Lisbon offshoot in the Estrela district.
The Food Temple: The Food Temple, Lisbon’s altar of vegetarian food, is located on a quiet street in the slowly (but steadily) up-and-coming Mouraria district.
Beco Cabaret Gourmet: Beco Cabaret Gourmet is celebrity Portuguese chef Jose Avillez’s newest and, by many definitions, most ambitious endeavor.
Alma: Chef Henrique Sá Pessoa ascended to epicurean-stardom shortly after opening Alma, his first restaurant, in the Chiado district in 2009. Nine years and one Michelin star later, a memorable meal is just as reliable.
Pesca: Pesca achieves one of culinary world’s toughest visual feats: making seafood photogenic.
Tapisco: Tapisco’s sleek red-and-white palette is quite the head turner on cool-but-understated Principe Real.
O Watt: A Cevicheria chef Kiko Martins opened his fifth restaurant in fall 2017: the aptly named O Watt, located in the same building as an energy company in Bairro Alto.
Taberna da Rua das Flores: Taberna da Rua das Flores’ azulejo-tile floor and glass cabinets filled with Portuguese tchotchkes, dishes, and glassware immediately makes this cozy restaurant feel like one of the narrow Baixa-Chiado homes that surrounds it.
Pharmacia: The palatial facade of this former mansion makes quite the first impression, especially as a setting for Pharmacia, a quirky pharmacy-themed restaurant that shares real estate with the Museu de Farmácia in Lisbon’s Santa Catarina district.
Cervejaria Ramiro: This beloved Lisbon beer hall and restaurant occupies three floors; but despite all the seating, expect to wait in line before you score a table.
JNcQUOI: JncQUOI is a first for Lisbon: a historic theater on Avenida da Liberdade that was recently converted into a fashionable trifecta, with a high-end men’s store, a bar, and a restaurant.
Local: The chalkboard sign mounted on the turquoise wall in front of Local, a covert Principe Real restaurant, says it all: “four chefs, one table.”
Os Gazeteiros: An outdoor chalkboard menu welcomes eager diners into Os Gazeteiros, a covert Alfama bistro. Inside, teal chairs, patterned woodwork, potted ferns, and a wall of wine bottles create a cozy environment.
Boi-Cavalo: Perched on an a cobblestoned alley in Alfama is something unexpected, at least for this traditional, fado-obsessed neighborhood: experimental contemporary cooking.
Belcanto: At the two-Michelin-starred Belcanto, Jose Avillez embraces the type of fine dining that looks straight out of a sci-fi film—in a good way.
Chutnify: Chutnify’s facade may be, but don’t let that fool you—the South Indian food here packs a punch.
Boa-Bao: It’s worth the inevitable wait for a seat at Boa-Bao, a popular restaurant in Chiado where the menu reads like a love letter to Asian flavors and recipes, from Japan to Laos.
Feitoria: Located in the Altis Belem Hotel & Spa, the glamorous, Michelin-starred Feitoria is a destination in itself. Sure, there’s an epic view of the river, but it’s the gold-leafed panel that commands all the attention.