Post-Christmas and New Year, Lisbon was just what my stomach needed.
We made several serendipitous discoveries of reasonably-priced restaurants serving good quality simple dishes, backed up by good service.
One such find was Rota do Infante in Rua Vieira Portuense in the Belèm area. We feasted on fresh fish and vegetables (boiled and raw). Whenever I have boiled broccoli now, it transports me back to this restaurant.
Another fortuitous find was the Arigato sushi house near the Oceanàrio (an aquarium) – a strategic location. We indulged in their very generous and delicious buffet which featured sushi, sashimi and more. I tried to behave like it wasn’t my last meal and went back for seconds only (not thirds or fourths).
We also enjoyed the all-vegetarian buffet at Terra Restaurante Natural. I liked their drinks menu a lot with its many organic options. Moby has dined there apparently. I wonder if he felt as inspired as I did to try out some new vegetarian recipes? I think I could create a variation of Terra’s stuffed cabbage rolls.
The only problem with Terra was the price: ouch! (The euros add up if you have organic wine and organic desserts as well as the buffet.)
As for cafè-hopping, the place I liked the most and which made me feel that I was NOT still in Italy was Cafè Brasileira. It was full of tourists but the coffee was scalding hot (the way I like it) and the beans supposedly came from Brazil.
I would re-visit ALL of the above places if I returned to Lisbon.
I must also re-mention the custard tarts at Antiga Confeitaria de Belem (aka Pasteis de Belem) which feature in every Lisbon tourist guide, but deservedly so: they were divine.