Portuguese Cuisine

The charm of the Algarve is also found in the Portuguese Gastronomy.  A unique part of the local lifestyle is the healthy, delicious, and fresh Mediterranean cuisine.


When you live or holiday locally you will dine mainly the freshest of what the earth and the sea have to offer.


The splendid Portuguese wines are not to be missed to compliment the local delicious cuisine.


Here are some local dishes that we highly recommend:


Seafood Cataplana

This is a recipe that has been passed down for many generations and is a very popular at the local seaside restaurants. Cataplana offers an explosion of many flavours all in one dish. It is prepared in the well-known Cataplana cooking pots and consists of fresh seafood, clams, squid, mussels, and any other fresh fish of the day. Also added are some onions, garlic, herbs, white wine, and tomato, now you are blessed with this amazing dish. The presentation of this dish and the taste are both sensational.


The Sardines

This simple fish dish is one of the most popular amongst the locals.  Grilled Sardines,

sea salt, pepper and olive oil are the main ingredients.  One of the most celebrated foods locally in the summer. It is often served with some locally cooked sourdough bread which takes in the divine sauce that comes from the fish. Annually there is a festival to celebrate Sardines, which is normally paired with a cold Portuguese beer or the Portuguese refreshing Vinho Verde “Green Wine”.


Algarve Style Conquilhas (local clams)

In the Ria Formosa area and along the beach you might spot some fishermen digging along the shore and placing small clams in plastic buckets with water. These clams are then cooked very simply with lots of garlic and olive oil and some sprinkles of coriander or garlic. Don’t forget to order some fresh Portuguese sourdough bread to dip in the sauce and soak up these beautiful fresh flavours.


Chicken Piri Piri

The Portuguese grilled Chicken on the BBQ with a bit of local spice called “piri piri” is not to be missed. Piri Piri is a hot sauce made with local chili peppers. This chicken can also be served without spice for those that don’t enjoy it. The “Chicken Piri” is often served in the local restaurants called “Churasqueira” with a fresh salad and chips.


Pastel de Nata


These delicious pudding cakes are common in the whole of Portugal. They are not necessarily a dessert; they can be savoured at any time of the day. They are best to be eaten when they come straight out of the oven with a little bit of powdered cinnamon sprinkled on top.


Portuguese Port Wine

Port wine is a Portuguese fortified wine. It is typically red and sweet although it also comes in dry, semi dry, and white varieties. Port is richer, sweeter, heavier and has a higher alcohol content than unfortified wines. It can be consumed as an aperitif, but it is also popular to drink with a dessert however the white port is often used in cocktails. Port wine is mainly produced in the region of Porto with local grapes and is a popular drink amongst the locals but through the years it has also become a famous export product. If you have time during your stay in Portugal, we recommend you visit the Porto region and see the port wine production.