Along with nearby 1 da Maio, Primavera is the best example of good, honest Portuguese cooking the city has to offer. The menu is reassuringly simple, but certainly not lacking in skill. Even the most traditional of Lisbon housewives are envious of Senhor Manuel and his kitchen.
Like many of the Bairro Alto restaurants, space is limited: it would be impossible to swing a flea, let alone a cat in this floodlit shoe-box. Still, it makes for a friendly, intimate environment and catching the waiter’s attention is never a problem. Delicious smells waft from the spotless kitchen, which is fully on display.
If the wait for food proves too torturous, why not try and decipher the proverbs inscribed on the azulejos that fill the back walls? The mainly middle-aged crowd is mixed but relaxed. It always seems to be bustling, so it’s good for those normally quieter mid-week and early evening meals.