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Lisbon and Seville info sought

 
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creampuff



Joined: 10 Mar 2005
Posts: 104
Location: Oakland, CA

PostPosted: Wed Feb 01, 2006 10:46 pm    Post subject: Lisbon and Seville info sought Reply with quote

I'm off in a bit more than a month to Lisbon, Seville and possibly Madrid. I need recommendations for food tourism including cooking classes, eating, drinking and food markets. Recommendations for food purchases to bring back, too, as well as resources on and off the web to help plan.

Anything foodie or not that I shouldn't miss?

Lisbon and Seville are new to me, but I have spent a lot of time in Madrid about 10 years ago.

Thanks for any tips, tricks or stuff to AVOID.
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Erin



Joined: 18 Oct 2004
Posts: 1654
Location: Within view of Elliot Bay, The Olympics and every ship in the Sound

PostPosted: Thu Feb 02, 2006 3:48 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

In Lisbon you must go to a bakery called Pasteis de Belem. Their specialty is the belem, and it is so yummy. It is a little egg custard with cinnamon and powdered sugar. The recipe is a well guarded secret worth tasting. Be careful, they are addicting.

In Seville I can't tell you a whole lot except stay away from the tapas restaurants in the tourist areas. You will get better food and deals if you go even a few streets out.
I almost forgot, there is this bar called Garlochi Bar I am dying to visit. I didn't have enough time to visit when I was there. The decor is god awful, literally, it is all religious decor that makes Buca de Beppo look tastefully done. The drinks are all given very blasphemous names. A friend went there and said it is the epitomy of religious kitch. I can't wait to see it for myself. It is located in The Alfalfa district.
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simona



Joined: 11 Mar 2005
Posts: 696
Location: israel

PostPosted: Thu Feb 02, 2006 4:37 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Dear Creampuff, though I have been many times in Seville and Lisbon ( I'm also a tour guide in the summer) I couldn't tell much about the hidden spots, I am more familiar with the tourist route, and for that of course you have enough tourist guides. Felipe might help with Lisbon Tips. But one thing I can tell you: Seville is, after Barcelona, the town with the biggest population of very talented pickpockets. They really are something, so beware, especially in the Barrio de Santa Cruz ( former Jewish quarter, today's most touristic quarter- avoid the restaurants there) As for the Pasteis de Belem, I don't know if this is also the name of a pastry shop, but it's certainly the name of the pastry itself, the famous little custards ( pasteis=pastry), originary in Belem , which is a suburb of Lisbon . It's worth to visit Belem - the Hieronymite Monastery - pure manueline style-where Vasco de Gama is burried ( an many more famous conquisitadores) and the nearby Coach Museum which I like very much. As for Belem, the name is a deviation from Bethlehem.
In Lisbon itself, There are many very good seafood restaurants, but I couldn't reccommend a specific one. I would take a ( very careful) stroll in the ALFAMA quarter ( sorry Erin), the oldest part of the town ( the old jewish qurter was there too, until the expulsion of the Jews from Portugal in the 16th century). There you can find many bars ( I noted the one Erin mentions for my next time there) and Fado places. But do ask for a less touristic one, maybe Felipe could help you with this quest too. The touristic places are really .... very touristic. I don't know how long you're going to stay in Lisbon, but if you have one day off, I would suggest you to visit Sintra , a little town ( touristic but very nice) loved by Byron. Closer to Lisbon, you can have a good seafood/fish meal in Estoril or Cascais. If you're there on a business trip, I'm sure your Portugese colleagues will be able to suggests some.
Writing you about Lisbon made me remeber this wonderful city I visited for the first time in 1979. It was a gem, and remained one.
Have a wonderful trip.

No more war, more wonderful travels around the globe!
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Filipe



Joined: 11 Nov 2005
Posts: 32
Location: Lisbon, Portugal

PostPosted: Thu Feb 02, 2006 5:06 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Dear Creampuff

I'm in a hurry now, but tonight I'll give you some tips. There are lots of things you shouldn't miss Smile Some more, others less interesting, but you'll do the choice Smile

By the way, how will you be travelling? All by plane ? Or will you be driving from Lisbon to Seville/Madrid ?
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Erin



Joined: 18 Oct 2004
Posts: 1654
Location: Within view of Elliot Bay, The Olympics and every ship in the Sound

PostPosted: Thu Feb 02, 2006 5:45 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Simona,

I thought there was something funny about that name. I know of cows eating alfalfa, but it seemed a strange name for a district. Funny!

As far as Pastis de Belem, it's probably a mistake. The good thing is it's the only place that makes them, so ask around and it should be easy to find.
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"It's hot ham water."
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Filipe



Joined: 11 Nov 2005
Posts: 32
Location: Lisbon, Portugal

PostPosted: Thu Feb 02, 2006 6:29 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Sooner than I thought i could post... here's a start :

Terreiro do Paço, (http://www.terreiropaco.com ) is the “house” of one of the most well-known contemporary portuguese chefs, Vitor Sobral. Here you can find some very nice portuguese contemporary cuisine.

Jose Avillez is a young but well-known portuguese chef, and this is his website - http://www.life-stylecooking.com . There you can find both the schedule of its classes and also his “interactive dinners”, where you cook your dinner with him and then you eat it  (only by appointment) He gives cooking classes at his restaurant, at Hotel Albatroz in Cascais (35km from Lisbon, along the shore) every Monday, both from 11a.m to 2p.m and from 7 to 10 p.m. Each class costs 50 euros.
This is the restaurant website : http://www.albatrozhotels.com/

This one is almost brand-new in the Lisbon restaurant scene. In only one year of existence it had achieved its (hopefully only) first Michelin star. It’s located near the Ritz/Four Seasons Hotel and the Meridien, at the top of the hill where the Eduardo VII Park is located. You can delight yourself with one of chef Joachim Koerper’s suggestions. http://www.restauranteleven.com .
Along with the “Ristorante Hotel Cipriani” at Lapa Palace Hotel (http://www.lapapalace.com) , this was the only other place where you could taste some white truffles while we were on their season.

If you want to taste some codfish (“bacalhau”) this is surely one of the best places in Lisbon to do it. It’s called Casa do Bacalhau and 70-80% of their menu are codfish plates - http://acasadobacalhau.restaunet.pt . It’s also a good place to taste some portuguese deserts.

If you like Italian food this is the place to go - Casa Nova – http://www.restaurantecasanostra.com . They have another restaurant – their first – called Casa Nostra at Bairro Alto . This second one is located near the fashionable discoteque LUX - http://www.luxfragil.com - and the modern-hype Bica do Sapato restaurant (a good place for sushi) http://www.luxfragil.com/bicasapato/bica_beta.html# (their website its still on an experimental version…)
Right next door to Casa Nova you have a gourmet store called Deli Delux - www.delidelux.pt
They’re all right next to the Santa Apolonia train station.

If you want to taste some portuguese wines you can go to Chafariz do Vinho - http://www.chafarizdovinho.com - where you can have some wine by the glass together with some “tapas” or some tasting menus. There’s another similar place in the S. Bento area, called “Au gout du vin” but I didn’t find their website and I don’t know its exact address.

There’s a place where you also might like to go. Although the food has nothing of extraordinary – it’s just am average steakhouse and a good place for seafood – it’s like one of the cities “institutions”. It’s called Portugalia. Their main restaurant is the one that worths a visit (they’ve started a franchising operation and opened restaurants in other locations and shopping malls as well). Its located on Avenida Almirante Reis. http://www.portugalia.pt
They’re open for more than 80 years and they produce their own beer.

As been told before you shouldn’t miss the Pastéis de Belém – http://www.pasteisdebelem.pt . Although you can find our “custard tarts” in every place, these are the original and they are always fresh (as to say hot in this case). If you go to Sintra - it really worths the visit (you can easily pick a train to Sintra at Entrecampos train/subway station) don’t miss a place called “ Periquita” where they have this famous “pillow-cakes” , in Portuguese “travesseiros”. Allways fresh (hot) as the Pastéis de Belém. Once there you can also get some of the famous “Queijadas de Sintra” – those you can easily take home with you because it’s a dry cake that lasts for some weeks. They come in a paper wrap, in a dozen or something.
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creampuff



Joined: 10 Mar 2005
Posts: 104
Location: Oakland, CA

PostPosted: Thu Feb 02, 2006 7:13 pm    Post subject: More on my trip Reply with quote

I am going to fly to Lisbon for about a week. I have day trips planned to Sintra and Oporto. Then I am on a bus to Seville and in Seville for three nights. From Seville I have some choices. I can stay in Seville another night or two, wander elsewhere or take a train or plane to Madrid (where I've been before) and stay a night or two before flying back to the States.

I leave March 14

Thanks for any and all tips. I knew I could count on the C&Z forums to help me plan my trip!

ps-- I love markets, any tips?

I am wary about pickpockets always keep my id and credit cards stashed in the hotel safe or in my hidden waist money belt when I travel, and I've seen what happens when you don't.

Simona -- I'd love to know what you think is "worth" it of the typical tourist things, too.

Thanks again.
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David



Joined: 30 Sep 2004
Posts: 1855
Location: Ottawa, Ontario, Canada

PostPosted: Fri Feb 03, 2006 5:26 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Simona---I think you are the only walking talking Encyclopedia of Europe I have ever met. Your depth of knowledge always impresses!
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simona



Joined: 11 Mar 2005
Posts: 696
Location: israel

PostPosted: Mon Feb 06, 2006 11:20 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Thanks David, but you exaggerate. I was a tour guide in Europe for nearly 30 years ( it was a hobby, I did it in summer , during holidays , it was not my main job) so I travelled a bit. Unfortunately there are some places where I'm familiar with the tourist route only, though I tried always to explore more the places I visited ( while my groups were busy spending their money on shopping- my only free time).
Now back to Lisbon/Spain. Creampuff , you said you are scheduled for one day trip to Oporto. I gather it's by plane ( it's way to far away from Lisbon to do it by train or bus). I haven't been to Oporto, so I don't know. But, if by any chance you are doing it in two days by bus, there are a lot of wonderful places on your way worth a visit like Nazare, a wonderful fishing village which was a gem in the late 70' , where I had wonderful grilled sardines on the beach. It has became very touristic, but there is still the village and the sea. There is Alcobaca not far away, a town known for it's blue ceramics. Batlha is also a "must stop", for the wonderful pure manueline style cathedral which is right off the main road. Further north you have Coimbra, where the University and the wonderful library is worth a detour. Not far from Coimbra there is the Bucaco forest . It's at least a two day trip, and Oporto is still far more in the north, so I doubt all that will fit in your itinerary.
As for Lisbon, besides the usual touristic places ( any guide will do) , I loved the Botanical Gardens. A short trip over the 25th of April Bridge will bring you to the Christ in Majesty statue, a little piece of Brazil in Europe. Nice view on a clear day. And as i said before, a walk in Alfama is pleasant . JUst take the tram up the hill, and do your walk down the hill, it's less tiring.( Filipe could advise the best way).
Filipe, I count on you for to advise on really good portuguese restaurants, restaurants where the Lisbonians eat, with typical portuguese food ( like the Caldo Verde soup I like very much), not the most modern or fashionable ones. The Portugalia sounds good, it's already in my address book.
Now about Spain: the bus to Seville will take most of the day,so you have three nights and two days in Seville. It's OK if you really work hard, as there are some sights to be seen. As for the extra two days, I would permit myself to make a suggestion: you have visited Madrid ( and probably Toledo), so I personally think that if you are in the south, you should devote the remaining two days to either Cordoba or Granada ( or better both, if you have time), and then take a flight to Madrid to catch your connection to the States. There are two towns not to be missed, and I even can't tell you what I love more : th old town and the Mesquita of Cordoba or the incredible Alhambra.
I wish you a very good voyage, and hope to hear about it on this forum when back. If I'll rememeber anything important, I'll write .

No more war, bon and safe voyage!
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Filipe



Joined: 11 Nov 2005
Posts: 32
Location: Lisbon, Portugal

PostPosted: Mon Feb 06, 2006 7:35 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

If you go to "Bairro Alto" neighbourhood you'll find a lot of good restaurants, many of them serving typical portuguese cuisine. I'll tell you about those three in that area were i usually eat (and I use "eat" in opposite to "dinne"...)
You can visit the "Cocheira Alentejana", ( http://www.lifecooler.iol.pt/edicoes/lifecooler/desenvReg.asp?reg=330522&catbn=19 ) at Travessa do Poço da Cidade 19
You can also try "Restaurante Antigo 1º de Maio", ( http://www.lifecooler.iol.pt/edicoes/lifecooler/desenvReg.asp?reg=331453&catbn=19 ) at Rua da Atalaia 8.
Other option could be "Tasca do Manel" ( http://www.lifecooler.iol.pt/edicoes/lifecooler/desenvReg.asp?reg=379955&catbn=19 ) at Rua da Barroca 24.

These are all small places, packed with tourists and locals, where you can eat average portuguese food.

If you're into listening to some fado while you haver dinner "Já Disse" might be an interesting option. I once had dinner there, because all my usual places were full, and it turned out to be a very kistch surprise. ( http://www.lifecooler.iol.pt/edicoes/lifecooler/desenvReg.asp?reg=365034&catbn=19 ) The food it's not anything special, but you won't find really good food in places such like this. To eat good true portuguese food you have to go outside Lisbon, more in the country areas. If by any chance you stop at Evora on your trip to Sevilla you MUST try "O Fialho". One of the temples of traditional portuguese cuisine.

About your trip to Oporto... you can pick up a train that will get you there in two and a half hours. If you go early in the moorning you can return in the same day, by dinner time. You should get a "Alfa Pendular" train at Santa Apolónia train station. Those are the fastest trains. Beware that the last returning train shoud be aroun 7.30-8.00 p.m.

While in Oporto, and since you won't be staying for too long, you should focus your visit on the historical area. You should take the metro to "Trindade" station, and then walk down Avenida dos Aliados or Rua de Santa Catarina, just towards the river trhough Rua Mouzinho da Silveira. You'll be at the "Ribeira" neighbourhood by then, UNESCO's World Heritage. When in "Ribeira" you should cross the D. Luis bridge (built by Gustave Eiffel) to the left bank of the Douro. That's where you will find the most astonishing view of the city and all the Porto wine cellars. Pick one and do the tour, its quite nice.
If you have some spare time and you're into contemporary architecture you should take the metro until "Casa da Musica" station, where you will find this brand new Concert Hall, designed by Rem Koohlas (the author od the brand new Seattle Library). Try to go there, it really worths the trip and shows you another sinde of the city.
If you still have some spare time (which i doubt) and you're into contemporary art, don't miss Alvaro Siza's "Museu de Serralves". It's Portugal's best conteporary art museum, located atthe gardens of an old art-deco house which actually holds the Foundation that owns the Museum.
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creampuff



Joined: 10 Mar 2005
Posts: 104
Location: Oakland, CA

PostPosted: Mon Feb 06, 2006 8:40 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Thanks again.

Because my friend has never been to Madrid, we will go there for our last few nights and the wonders of southern Spain will have to wait for my next trip.

Let me know if you think of anything else.

I am very appreciative.
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creampuff



Joined: 10 Mar 2005
Posts: 104
Location: Oakland, CA

PostPosted: Thu Feb 16, 2006 8:24 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Does anybody know a blogger by the name of Pedro in Lisbon. He writes about the local food scene, I think.

I didn't keep the name of his blog but sent him an email about cooking schools and the like. He sent me an email back but yahoo doesn't like his address for some reason.

Cooking Diva may have given me the link but I can't find it on her site.

Any ideas?
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creampuff



Joined: 10 Mar 2005
Posts: 104
Location: Oakland, CA

PostPosted: Wed Mar 08, 2006 2:45 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Just a week until I leave. Lots of good suggestions already, but I'll check back before I leave in case anyone else has some ideas. Thanks everyone!
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simona



Joined: 11 Mar 2005
Posts: 696
Location: israel

PostPosted: Wed Mar 08, 2006 5:33 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Have a wonderful trip, eat a lot of pasteis de Belem, sea food, Tapas and Hamon ( raw ham), say hello to my PREFERATE museum in Europe, the Prado, and a special hello to the amazing pictures of Hyeronimus Bosh . The Prado is the only museum where I enjoy ALL the collection.

Bon Voyage,

Simona
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