Chandeliers sparkle and flower petals glisten behind the thick velvet curtains of this Bairro Alto stalwart. It’s a world apart from the ramshackle streets outside and only the hallowed few with the foresight to book a table may enter. Ask any Lisboeta to name their favourite restaurant and Pap’ Açorda will more than likely come up trumps. From hoteliers to humble students, this is the place everyone is talking about.
rnA former training ground for the team behind Bica do Sapato, the restaurant takes its name from a speciality dish of açorda (a stale bread and garlic mixture that bears a disturbing resemblance to baby food) with prawn. A home-made thick viscous chocolate pudding, served directly from the mixing-bowl with a ladle, is also something to write home about. That’s if you get the chance!
rnUnfortunately, both the best food and service are reserved for locals and VIPs: uptight and self-important waiters are unlikely to give you the time of day if they hear an English accent. Shame. Worth checking to see what the fuss is about, but don’t settle for second-rate service.