Algarve Food Guide: 7 great places to eat in the Algarve

If I could give you one piece of advice about eating in The Algarve – it would be to arrive hungry. And avoid all the Western crap because trust me you’ll want to be eating all of this good stuff. Welcome to my Algarve food guide…  

Press trip Algarve Portugal

*[AD ~ Press Trip] The restaurants mentioned in this post were visited as part of a press trip with Jet2Holidays.

If there’s a general rule I follow when I’m visiting a new country it’s to avoid menus with photos or a big British flag on. I like to eat locally to really immerse myself in the culture and let’s be honest, we all know what a kebab looks like. So if you’re looking for where to find your nearest McDs in Portugal, this isn’t the food guide for you. For divine local eats, read on. 

Food to eat in Portugal

Faísca & Henriques 

I’ve never been a breakfast person so a cheeky pastry from the hotel breakfast buffet is generally sufficient for me. We had brekkie at the Tivoli Marina Vilamoura hotel each day which literally had everything you could imagine and more. Including more pastries than you could shake a stick at.  

But one pastry that hadn’t previously crossed my plate is a Pastel de Nata which is a Portuguese custard tart dusted with cinnamon (like everything good in life). You could eat these for brekkie, lunch, dinner or to be honest at any point on your trip. I flew home with a box of six, no judgement, please! I’d never tried one before and question WTF I was doing up until this point in my life, as they are just little bites of happiness and sunshine.

Reason to visit: 

Visit Faísca & Henriques for the best pastries in Portugal and prepare to be wowed. 

Algarve food guide: Faisca & Henriques

Tertúlia Algarvia Restaurant

Wham bam Cataplan-a. Ok, that didn’t rhyme but whatever, if you’re visiting Portugal you absolutely must head to Tertúlia Algarvia and order the seafood Cataplana which is a dish comprised of razor clams and cockles in a garlic and olive oil sauce. Just divine. Dunk some toasted bread in the sauce and sit back and fall into a food coma! They also have a range of gluten-free alternatives as well as a selection of veggie options.

We also sampled goats cheese with honey, jam and almonds which is a typical Portuguese starter. Stop raising your eyebrows – it really is a game-changer and well worth a mention in any Algarve food guide! Slightly tempted to try and recreate this with a block of cheddar and a jar of Hartleys, something tells me it won’t be quite the same though… 

Reason to visit: 

Visit Tertúlia Algarvia Restaurant for the best Cataplana in all the land, there I said it. 

Sea food Cataplana tertulia algarvia

Estaminé Restaurant

Make fish the dish of the day. I fear that phrase comes from some sort of advert I can’t quite recall – £10 to anyone that can name which one?! 

Appreciate there’s a lot of fish recommendations here. It was so nice to sample fish dishes aside from my orange coated birds-eye besties and you really are spoilt for choice with the fishy options out here. 

Being the only restaurant on Ilha Deserta (desert island) it’s just as well the food is good really. My favourite dish at this restaurant was the sea bream which is deboned in front of your very eyes (squeamish peeps look away now). Not only was the fish absolutely bloody delicious but taking in the panoramic views over the sand dunes whilst eating was a real treat. Everything is cooked in their solar-powered kitchen which is a nice touch and the entire restaurant has a really friendly vibe. 

Reason to visit: 

Visit Estaminé Restaurant for delicious fresh oysters and sea bream. And if you’re feeling brave, why not try an after-dinner shot of firewater…  

Estaminé restaurant Algarve food guide

Paixa Restaurant – Boujee sharing platters

Fill your boots, firstly with the decor and then the amount of food available. Their gigantic in house wine cellar could fit all my hopes and dreams inside, and then some. Impressive. And as for the food, where do I start? The dishes here are all intended to share which was perfect for me as I absolutely LOVE picky bits. 

My favourite dish here would have to be the oxtail croquettes which were so tender (similar in taste and texture to pulled pork). But the Paris mushrooms stuffed with Iberian ham and the incredible smoked salmon were all vying for the top spot. All delicious and just so aesthetic. Not many veggie options here so if you’re not a fan of meat or fish then this probably isn’t the place for you. 

Reason to visit:

Visit Paixa Restaurant for variety and social sharing dishes with a touch of glam… A great place to visit as a group (more foodie options to try). Do make sure to whack on a shirt or a bit of red lippy if you’re visiting for dinner though so you don’t get shown up by their boujee decor. 

Paixa restaurant Algarve

EMO Restaurant 

A firm fave on the Algarve food guide! If you like steak then listen right up, because you will love this place. I would honestly fly back to the Algarve just to eat steak here again. I’d also like to visit in the daytime as the views from the restaurant are supposed to be insane. 

With a tasting menu, it can sometimes feel as if there’s more cutlery than consumption happening around the table, but this is definitely not the case with EMO Restaurant. 

Each dish was paired with a glass of accompanying Portuguese wine and despite my clothes feeling tighter with every mouthful I still managed a dessert which was chocolate and raspberry flavoured with a sweet potato base and a carrot on top, strange combo – but somehow it worked! 

Reason to visit: 

Visit EMO restaurant for the most amazing steaks, cleverly paired wines and quirky desserts. 

EMO restaurant

O Patio Restaurant 

Another fab restaurant to visit is O Patio which is located in Carvoeiro. One to stop off after you’ve trekked the Seven Hanging Valleys trail, which is just an absolute must tbh. One of the oldest restaurants in the area and held in high regard due to its varied menu – uh-mazing cod and top-notch service. 

My stomach saw the menu and was instantly intrigued but my top button was saying OMG b*tch get a salad – spoiler alert – salad did not happen! Grab a table out front to people watch while you tuck into a starter of prawns and yet another glass of vino. 

Reason to visit:

Visit: O Patio Restaurant for a varied menu, gorge beach views and delicious cod. 

O Patio restaurant Algarve food guide

Bovinos Steakhouse

Rumoured to be the best steakhouse in Portugal – this place does not skimp on the details. With a drop-dead gorgeous bar and stunning furnishings at every turn – you will be falling all over yourself to snap the interior of this place.  

When one steak isn’t enough, order the sharing menu and try a bit of everything. The sharer includes fillet, rump, ribeye and strip steak which is served up on a hot plate so you can leave your steak to cook as much or as little as you wish. They have fab veggie options available and oh my life the gratin potatoes were good enough to swap a family member for. 

Reason to visit:

Visit Bovinos Steakhouse for the lush steak, perfect potatoes and the interior decor! 

Bovines steakhouse Portugal

If like me, your bank statement regularly resembles a food diary I hope this Algarve food guide proves useful. Have you visited any of these places or do you have anywhere else to add to this list? Let me know! xo

*[AD ~ Press Trip] The restaurants mentioned in this post were visited as part of a press trip, where we were gifted complimentary meals and drinks, but all content is original and my own. 


  1. Sarah November 4, 2019 / 1:24 pm

    This list of restaurants looks amazing, think we must make a pilgrimage over to them! 😍✈️🌞

    • misshldolan
      November 4, 2019 / 1:26 pm

      They were so good – I’m sure I put on about 20 stone but it was well worth it haha xo

  2. Kirsty November 5, 2019 / 2:18 pm

    Such gorgeous looking food and beautiful photos. I agree wholeheartedly eating locally is the best way to take in what the country has to offer.

    • misshldolan
      November 5, 2019 / 2:31 pm

      Oh thank you lovely! Can’t beat trying all the local dishes when on holiday, it’s one of my favourite parts of a hol! xo

  3. Karen A Lanzetta November 5, 2019 / 5:19 pm

    I get hungry just reading this post. Great pictures and descriptions! We went to the Algarve a few years ago and loved the food . Of course we tried that Pastel de Nata and enjoyed it.
    Thanks for bringing back good memories. If there is one thing that annoyed me, was all the Dutch menus and restaurant signs, I was like “I am on vacation, I don’t want DUTCH people from home” 😀 😀 😀

    Carpe Diem |

    • misshldolan
      November 5, 2019 / 5:40 pm

      Haha omg Pastel de Natas are just the most amazing things aren’t they! I always try and avoid the British menus when I’m on hols – I have enough of that at home 😂😂

  4. Lisa Alioto November 5, 2019 / 5:40 pm

    I love to try new things – thank you for introducing these great options!

    • misshldolan
      November 5, 2019 / 5:47 pm

      Aww I’m glad you liked them 🥰🥰

  5. Sian Lifts Weights November 13, 2019 / 9:49 am

    I was watching your insta stories whilst you were here and my god, it all looked amazing!!! The food looks amazing!

    • misshldolan
      November 13, 2019 / 10:50 am

      Haha omg I would legit fly back purely for the food – it was bloody delish & so much variety! xx

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