01 –Let’s begin on the outskirts of the capital Angra. In the unlikely event you’ve exhausted all of the excellent possibilities within the city centre, it’s a short five-minute taxi ride north to the Taberna Roberto. It’s very much a locals’ place: warm and welcoming, where you can turn up tired and dusty from an all-day hike, and treat yourself to Roberto’s amazing slow-cooked ribs and a bottle of mainland wine:
#02 –If you’re staying on the western outskirts of Angra, (at Quinta das Merces or the Terceira Mar Hotel), the QB Food Court is a fifteen-minute walk away. During the day, the ground floor snack bar is ideal for a light lunch, pizza, salads and soups. In the evenings, the first-floor restaurant has a nicely-mixed menu of Azorean classics and more European-style cuisine. They’ve been introducing more veggie options recently, and it’s worth a visit just to sample their desserts, cakes and chocolates:
#03 –Heading clock-wise on a foodie-tour of the island: the west coast village of Serreta is home to the Restaurante Tipico Ti-Choa. Blink and you’ll miss this unassuming, one storey building. It’s a cosy, family-run restaurant serving big portions of home-cooked Terceiran food. For our resident guide Tiago, Ti-Choa is the best place to sample the island’s most-famous dish Alcatra, served with sweet potatoes and a fresh local Massa Sovada bread:
#04 – From Serreta, the road brings you up onto Terceira’s more-rugged north coast. As you approach the village of Altares, lookout for the Restaurante Caneta on your right. It’s another great restaurant for Alcatra and locally-sourced beef, as well as grilled limpets and clams from the island of Sao Jorge. And they’re big portions once again: visiting any of the more traditional-style restaurants is a non-starter if you’re on a diet – better to just give in and go with the Azorean-flow. You can usually pop into Caneta without a reservation during the week for lunch in the courtyard – but you’ll need to reserve in advance on Saturdays and Sundays (for lunch and/or dinner):
#05 – Biscoitos is well-known and well-loved for it’s natural swimming pools, and the Bar do Abismo is the obvious choice for a lunchbreak on dryland. Inland from the pools is one of the Terceira’s hidden food-gems: Senhora Delia Martin’s bakery. Delia and her family opened the bakery (or Padaria to give it’s correct Portuguese title) around five years ago, converting an old wine storehouse into a wood-fired bakery. It can be a bit tricky to find, (its the first left after the Banif Acores and Post Office), but it’s a perfectly placed take-away if you’re heading down to the seapools or just touring around the island:
#06 – …and if you’re staying close to Biscoitos at the Caparica Azores Ecolodge, Casa de Pasto o Pedro and the diminutive Restaurante O Raul are your closest options – more of those big portions of unpretentious Azorean cuisine:
#07 – Coming around to the east coast, you’ll arrive into Terceira’s second city: Praia da Vitoria. Praia’s home to the island’s main fishing fleet and the Restaurante o Pescador: one of the Azores’ oldest restaurants. If you’re staying in Praia at either the Varandas do Atlantico or the Atlantida Hotel or if you’re a big fan of fresh seasonal seafood, o Pescador should definitely be on your list:
#08 – Also in Praia is Sabores do Chef. You could call them the young pretenders to o Pescador’s long-held crown – they have a similar menu, perhaps slightly more on the gourmet-side in terms of presentation which fits nicely with the restaurant’s modern decor. Their grilled Swordfish and the Octopus stew are both particularly good – although they tend to be a bit more pricey than o Pescador:
#09 – One of my favourite restaurants in Praia is La Barca. It’s walkable if you’re staying in the town, and it’s a good option for lunch if you’ve a few hours free between connecting flights. I’m more of a meat eater and their steaks are excellent – and the floor-to-ceiling windows make the most of the seaview across the harbour:
#10 – …and finally, a recent discovery is the Restaurante Búzius in Porto Martins. The Buzius isn’t new – in my ignorance, I’ve often cycled this way without turning off the main road to explore this quiet little enclave. (Biscoitos-aside), Porto Martins’ seawater swimming pools are some of the best on the island, particularly for families with little ones. You could easily lose a lazy day to the sunshine and the sea, and the Restaurante Buzius is the cherry on the cake (if you’ll pardon the pun):
Our Where to eat guides are based on our first-hand experience and our love of great Portuguese cuisine:
We specialise in tailor-made holidays to the nine islands of the Azores. Call Paul on 017687 721020 to begin planning your personalised trip.
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