Every year I go to Portugal for my holidays with my parents and little (she is 26!) sister.
We have been for the last 7-8 years, and I thought it was time to write about some of my favourite restaurants.
The new town has a whole host of places to eat, and they cater to almost everything, from Italian and Indian to American and Irish.
My personal favourite is Senhor Frogs, the pizzeria. There are 2, one at the top of the strip, and one just past the middle towards the beach. We usually frequent the latter, and the staff are extremely friendly and recognise repeat customers and sometimes even give a free liqueur at the end of the meal
Senhor Frogs do an eat in or take away option, and have a lovely terrace on which to eat. Something else that is quite remarkable is that you can order gluten free pizzas and pastas. If you go early and request a gluten free pizza, they will make it for you on site for when you return – just give them a few hours warning so they can prove the dough.
Their menu is vast and I am sure you will find something you love.
I opted for the garlic bread, which was lovely and flavoursome, and a small Sicillian packed full of pepperoni, mushrooms and green peppers. The small was big enough for me, a few nights later I went for a large and it defeated me!
For 4 of us, including drinks (4 pizza, 4 garlic bread, 4 large beer, a G&T and a coke) was €70 ish.
For breakfast, I highly recommend Ricks Café, on the strip just up from Senhor Frogs. This Dutch café does an incredible full English for €4, which consists of Heinz beans, sausage, Dutch bacon, eggs and toast. Anna the owner is lovely. She remembers the fact that I always order a Dutch Kroketten with mine. This breaded delight is filled with what reminds me of stuffing, but is in fact beef, spices and onion, covered in breadcrumbs and deep fried golden brown and absolutely delicious. Unusual to have on a breakfast, but as I have only ever found them in Holland I eat them at every opportunity.
For 4 of us, breakfasts, coffees or soft drinks it was under €30.
My favourite restaurant in Old Town Albufeira has to bePizzaria O Terraço, right near the beach of the fisherman (Praia dos Pescadores)
Sitting outside on a hot summer evening people watching is one of my happiest memories. The menu is great, with some hilarious translations such as ‘gravy of lemon’ and it’s the first place I have been to that has a tropical pizza adorned with banana, pineapple, peach and apple – but whatever floats your boat! There is a great range of pastas, pizza and salad, and limited fish options.
I always have garlic bread and Spaghetti with garlic and oil, that has parsley and a hint of lemon juice in, and also add in bacon and mushrooms.
For four of us it came to €69, drinks included.
My fourth and final favourite is Restaurante Favinha (Albufeira e Olhos de Agua) about a 10 minute drive from Albufeira strip and a half hour walk from Olhos de Agua beach. Run by a couple and their son it really is a local restaurant off the beaten track and you get an authentic experience. Manu, the son, is a great host and extremely attentive. There is no menu, what they have fresh on the day is what you get. If you want something specific, let Manu know the day before and he will go to the market to get it that day. The offerings on the day we went were sirloin steak (plain or with pepper sauce) Piri Piri chicken, T-Bone steak, lamb chops and garlic prawns.
My sister went for the sirloin which was huge and covered in pepper sauce, Dad went for a T-Bone that was honestly bigger than my head! Mum and I opted for the prawns. They were huge, at least 6in in length each, fat and really tasty. We had about 20 in the dish to share and we were full. All the above was served with some of the best square crispy potatoes I have ever tasted, and a big bowl of lightly dressed salad. The whole meal including drinks was €87.
Albufeira has a plethora of restaurants and some of the nicest waiters. Everyone is friendly and these restaurants go out of their way for their customers. I can’t wait to go back next year for more!