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Just like all over Portugal, The Algarve offers its own traditional gastronomy, strongly influenced by the cuisine and Mediterranean culture.
Algarve is divided in three distinct geographic and gastronomical areas:
- The Coast (with fish and seafood dishes especially dishes with tuna and octopus).
- The inland areas of the Barrocal (with simple dishes of fresh vegetables and sausages).
- Algarve mountains (with heavier dishes with chicken and pork stews).
Olive oil is the preferred and used for both, seasoning and for cooking, along with onions, tomatoes, peppers, garlic and fresh herbs such as parsley and coriander.
Desserts and sweets are strongly influenced by the almond, the fig and carob trees that are all native to the region together with the old traditions of the Alentejo province showcasing interesting artistic preparations with eggs, almonds and figs.
Portimao Specialty Dishes
Once again it's the sea and the fishing activity that dictates the basis of the regional gastronomy.
Such a fishing interaction has always been in existence in this picturesque city of Portimão.
Fish and seafood are the gastronomic strength of Portimao and its restaurants.
The best known specialty are the grilled sardines.As locally stated, Portimao is king.
As in the picture above,there is a fun area along the Arade river full of restaurants dedicated to this specialty.
Eat it on the bread or on the plate, do visit and enjoy. A nice red Algarve or Alentejo wine is an ideal combination.
Sardines are best flavored from Later May to October.
Shellfish such as clams, razor blades and cockles are harvested fresh from the river estuary and are part of many dishes either as a main component or to add flavor and presentation to others such as casseroles and rices.
The almond, fig and carob are some of the products of the land used in Portimao. They are the source for delicious desserts. Remember to try some of the fig cheeses; a local specialty.
Again accompanied by one of the many excellent wine from the Algarve and Alentejo.
Complete your meal by tasting the regional sweets based on almonds, malabar gourd and figs, taste the carob cookies and the famous "D. Rodrigos".
At this time you can savor some of the regional liquors created with local figs, almond, honey and arbutus berries brandy - (Aguardente de Medronho)
- Top 10 local dishes that can be found at many traditional restaurants in Portimao as showcased in this tasteful blog
Traditional delicacies you will find in most regional restaurants.
Cataplana -a very tasty seafood stew made with fresh catch of the day seafood or fish from the local fish market.
Filled Squid The squid is traditionally filled with prosciutto, chorizo (traditional dry sausage), olive oil, onions, parsley and tomato served with potatoes and salad
Conquilhas- (type of clams that live buried on the sand and can be found at the water edge of most beaches in the Algarve and along the Portuguese coast. ) opened in a pan with olive oil, garlic, coriander, lemon and pepper. A great appetizer.
Tuna with onions- Fresh tuna steak marinated in vinegar, garlic, bay leaves, olive oil, onions, salt and pepper and served with boiled potatoes.
Octopus Rice - The octopus, marinated and prepared with red wine, onion, olive oil, garlic, tomatoes, red or green peppers, salt, hot chillis (piri-piri), Stewed over fire or in the oven with rice in a beautifully flavored tomato sauce..
Sardines- Charcoal barbecued fresh sardines served with potatoes, red peppers and potatoes. Salad on the side; either lettuce or a delicious tomato and onions salad with grilled green peppers, oregano, olive oil and vinegar. Sardines are best between June and late September as they are fat and delicious..
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