We've tracked down and taste-tested Lisbon's most delectable bakeries to bring you this definitive top 12 of Lisbon's best bakeshops to go for breakfast or brunch, tea, or even lunch.
Lisbon's best bakeries and cake shops
You catch the fish with bate and with bate you hook up this pastry’s clientele. Tartine bakes his own artisanal bread and with no hurry at all. They put natural yeast (or bate, as they call it) in their dough which leavens overnight. As a compensation, because this dough is naturally more sour, they bake something called Chiado cake, with puff pastry and “doce de ovos” (a delicacy made with eggs and sugar), to sweeten your mouth.
With an apron full of flour and with a hat on his head. This is how Paulo Sebastião welcomes us into his new artisan bakery in the neighborhood of Alvalade where he demystifies the idea that bakers are like bats, working only in during the night. Isco Pão e Vinho (meaning Sourdough starter, Bread and Wine) is always scented by the smell of freshly baked bread.
Matthiew Croiger left Paris to open one of the best French pastries in Lisbon, where you can find good almond praline éclairs, with hazelnut and 40% Valrhona cocoa; or with pistachio from Iran and raspberry, or with crème brûlée with vanilla from Madagascar. “Everyday we make 10 types of éclairs”, besides macarons, croissants and all sorts of other pastry orders”, says the owner.
It's not a bakery, it's not a pizzeria, it's not a pastry shop. But there is bread, Neapolitan inspired pizza and homemade sweets. The bread is one of the highlights of the house and is 100% organic. Three types are sold: wheat (with two kinds of flours), whole wheat, and one that is mixed with three different flours (it is sold at € 3.80 per quarter loaf). Every day there are 7 pounds of bread due to be baked, but they want to get to get up to 20 and add other varieties to the menu.
Vitor Sobral had already tested the concept for this bakery in Sao Paulo Brazil. At Padaria da Esquina Mario Rolando's long fermentation bread gets the spotlight. There are among ten varieties of bread (between 0,30 cents and 6€) but in the near future they expect to reach 15 - only with flour, water, salt and time (24 hours of fermentation and sourdough). There is also an offer of pastry, with bolas de Berlim, pão de Deus, Porto style croissants, rice cupcake, orange tarts, and an area dedicated to cheeses and sausages.
Diogo Amorim, the baker, was born in Santa Maria da Feira, spent time at Villa Joya - the Michelin-starred restaurant and trained at the Fat Duck in England, where he started making bread. In December 2016 he opened Gleba, in Alcântara, where he works with Portuguese cereals such as barbela wheat, an original national variety from Trás-os-Montes. The cereals are purchased from small producers who practice sustainable agriculture and are milled in a Santarém’s stone mill right in front of the customer. This bread lasts longer and the fermentation takes at least 24 hours.
Fim de Século pastry, in Benfica, won Lisbon’s annual Custard Cream Tart Contest, in April 2016, organized by Peixe Festival. Time Out took this opportunity to talk to pastry chef Carlos Oliveira, that said that “the secret lies in the dough”. “The dough is what takes more time to bake. First you have to knead the puff pastry and let it rest for a few hours, then you add the butter and you turn it around a few times, but I can’t tell you how many times”, he laughs. “That’s where the secret lies”. Then, you must stretch it, cut it in small pieces and put it into cake bins. What we want is for it to rest in the fridge overnight before being stuffed, not to risk getting the dough to shrink.
On Saturdays, on market days, the queue outside this pastry – which is 27 years old and has only a few square meters – goes almost all the way to Benfica’s Market, which is 200 meters away.
“There was a Saturday that was insane. We sold over 3000 tarts in one day. He had 12 Brazilian tourists that as soon as they landed they got here to eat them”, says André Santos, the manager. “Each day we spend an average of 30 dozen of eggs, 20 kilos of margarine, 50 kilos of sugar and another similar amount of flour to bake them”. “We are also very known for our bolo-rei (a Christmassy traditional Portuguese cake), which even won several awards, and for being the ones baking all the pastries at Brasileira, in Chiado. Every day we send them cream custard tarts, muffins, jesuítas and palmiers”.
It was founded in 1976 and every day they have “línguas de veado” (butter cookies that resemble a dear’s tongue, which is literally what they are called in Portuguese), milk bread, “mil folhas” cake (which is named after the number of layers it has – a thousand), simple or stuffed croissants. “The custard cream tarts are also good. And people have already asked us why we didn’t attend the annual contest to elect the best cream custard tart”, underlines José Carvalho, the manager.
Founded in 1838, Príncipe Real’s confectionary was part of Eça de Queirós’ routine, who used to stop by for an expresso and a custard cream tart before heading towards Chiado. This is the pastry where the famous bronze shaped marmalade is made, according to the monks of the Cistercian Order’s recipe – who ran the house since the beginning of the XX century up until the mid 1940’s. Every year 400 kilos leave this place, but there’s more, like small cheesecakes and merengues baked by the pastry cooks, who start working at 4.30 in the morning.
Famosa pelos croissants com doce de leite, a Sacolinha é uma das mais completas padarias e pastelarias da cidade. Um antro de calorias com pão para todos os gostos, uma variedade impressionante de salgados, doces e respectivas miniaturas e, sim, as melhores bolas de berlim com doce de leite da cidade. Do país. Do mundo.
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