Esplanada Cafe do Principe Real, Lisbon, Portugal

Food: A favorite breakfast spot! Also decent salads, inexpensive sandwiches and crostini plus entrees that are an overview of Portuguese cuisine (from pregos to bacalhau). 

Wine: I always drink beer here. Cold and in big pints. And good coffee. Plus lots of spirits if that is your thing.

My take: This is a beautiful setting. A glass building in the Principe Real park on top of the "hill' above Bairro Alto. You can sit in the glass building (to feel like you're outside if it is raining) or outside under the gorgeous trees. I love it for breakfast. Tips: 1. You have to be persistent (in a friendly way) with the servers. 2. There are pigeons in the park and they will try to get your food if you don't make it clear it's yours and not theirs. 3. If you get the burger/steak and don't want it rare, you must tell the server. More about Esplanada Cafe do Principe Real. 

Bom Jardim, Lisbon, Portugal

Food: Roasted chicken piri piri!  Some of the best roasted chix you'll ever have. And it's cheap. 

Wine: They have a half bottle selection here so while the rest of the table is ordering a cold delicious beer, you can have wine. 

My take: It's a Lisbon institution for good reason. Sidewalk seating. Cranky but efficient waiters. Crispy fries. Vinegary mixed green salad. A must!

Chafariz do Vinho, Lisbon, Portugal

Food: Rustic, tasty small plates or "petiscos" inside the Aguas Livres Aqueduct! It's basically a massive holding tank for water that came into Lisbon via the almost 60-km-long 18th C. aqueduct, an engineering wonder that survived the 1755 earthquake. They actually store the wine in the tunnel that connects the tank to the aqueduct!

Wine: This is a wine bar with fun flight options to learn the regions of Portugal. A must for people who dig wine and/or architecture and engineering.

My take: It is very popular with tourists. But the setting is worth a trip. Go for a glass and enjoy a historic "watering" hole and with a great selection of Portuguese wines. More on Chafariz do Vinho

Tambarina, Lisbon, Portugal

Food: No-frills Cape Verdean restaurant with friendly, lively atmosphere. The food is hearty, filling and good. You can get a meal and a drink that will leave you happy and satisfied for less than 10 euros! They serve traditional foods from Cape Verde (chef and staff are from Cape Verde), such as cachupa, a stew of beans and meat or fish. 

Wine: I always drink the cold draft beers here! They go great with the hearty, sometimes spicy food.

My take: These kinds of restaurants are a reason to visit Lisbon! In one long weekend you can sample the cuisines of former Portuguese colonies. Good food at great prices with friendly service! They often have live music too. More on Tambarina

Taberna da Rua das Flores, Lisbon, Portugal

Food: Man, it's good. A tasca with a very small menu. Maybe 10 tables. Each day is different and is listed on a chalkboard. Slightly modernized take on traditional Portuguese. Love this place.

Wine: I just drink the house wine and it's solid. 

My take: Go. You'll be happy. More on Taberna da Rua das Flores.

Tasca da Esquina, Lisbon, Portugal

Food: Creative, sorta fancy, newfangled style of petiscos. The chef's choice tasting menu is very good! (This is what Pharmacia wants to be...)

Wine: Great rotating selection by the glass.

My take: If you're in Estrella or Campo Ourique or want to adventure outside the main tourist center of Lisbon, this should be one of your dinners!

Sea Me Mercado da Ribeira, Lisbon, Portugal

Food: Creative Portuguese take on sushi! 

Wine: Small (it's the market) but good list by the glass.

My take: You can eat at the market location and have the Sea Me experience without spending as much. And they have some dishes specific to the market. More on Mercado da Riberia

Fabulas, Lisbon, Portugal

Food: Fresh, trendy take on Portuguese classics in a pretty, fully covered courtyard (shared with two other restaurants--but separate).  Just through a large door off of the busy Rua Garrett.  

Wine: Small, focused list of good wine producers.

My take: One of those places that's great for lunch with a friend but also for a date!  Recommended! More on Fabulas

Tartar-ia, Lisbon, Portugal

Food: Delicious, very fresh fish, beef and veggies creatively prepared tartar-style. 

Wine: Good small rotating selection by the glass. They usually have Soalheiro, my favorite alvarinho producer!

My take: A top pick in Lisbon. You gotta go. I crave it. (Especially if you need a break from the typical, hearty Portuguese cuisine). More on Tartaria.

Taberna Portuguesa, Lisbon, Portugal

Food: Pretty decent petiscos (tapas)! The tasting menu is the thing to do here. You get to sample big portions of several traditional petiscos with unlimited wine or beer for 25 Euros. It is a lot of food so come hungry.

Wine: It's a house white and a house red. Don't ask, just drink. And don't be afraid to ask for refills.

My take: It's touristy but fun. It's not really about the quality (although the food is totally fine); it's about the indulgence. It's also crowded and there's a line outside anytime after 7:30pm. Go around 7 to get right in. More on Taberna Portuguesa.