One of the best things to do in Porto is without any doubt tasting the local cuisine. For that reason, I decided to join a food tour in Porto – to make sure that I’ll try the best food in the city. And I really did!
During my trip to the second biggest city in Portugal, I attended the Porto Secret Food Tour.
That was my second time eating my way around a city with these guys after Barcelona back in 2017. The first time when I went on a Secret Food Tour, I absolutely loved it. The food that I had was the best that I had in Barcelona, away from the tourist traps.
I had no doubts that my experience in Porto will be any different than that. And I was right.
Our guide, Carlos, was the best part of the tour. A wonderful man that we could talk about everything with. He gave us tons of information about the city. Spending half a day with Carlos, eating around Porto (and drinking wine) was a pleasure.
About Secret Food Tours
Designed to introduce travelers to the best food in the city, the Secret Food Tours are run by local guides passionate about showing their city, and of course, secret food spots.
By going to the Secret Food Tour you get to learn about the history and culture of the said destination, how and where locals buy food, and how the food has shaped the area.
About the Portuguese cuisine
Portuguese is well-known for seafood (and wine). It has a great influence from its formal colonies and many ingredients, fruits and vegetables have been brought to the country from those places.
Meat is also very common, especially pork and beef. Olive oil is used for cooking and flavoring and goes hand in hand with almost every dish. Garlic is widely used. Surprisingly, cinnamon too.
I didn’t know that, but it turned out that Portugal also has a wide variety of cheeses. Pretty good cheeses, I must say. I tried a few that were very strong as a taste, but I liked them all.
The most famous Portuguese dessert is the Pastéis de Nata. We didn’t have it on the tour, but it’s a dessert that you can find literally everywhere around Portugal. Plus, they say that the best place to have it is in Lisbon.
That being said, tasting the local cuisine and joining a food tour is one of the best things to do and experience in Portugal.
About Porto Secret Food Tour
We attended the tour on our last, fourth day in Porto. The first two days while we were in the city it was raining pretty much non-stop. Luckily, we had lovely weather on the day of the tour.
We started the day with a traditional Portuguese cake and coffee. FACT: Portuguese drink a lot of coffee!
The tour then continued to our second stop, which was the market in Porto (Mercado do Bolhão). Now, the building where the market is usually situated in is closed for renovation and the market is currently located in one of the shopping malls in the city.
At first, I thought that this must be a very bad idea, but actually, you don’t even realize where is it. It still has a very authentic feeling and it’s there only until the renovation finishes.
We walked through the market and Marina finally found her long-desired chorizo.
We had sardines and a glass of wine. This was probably my favorite stop.
Our two next stops included the traditional sandwiches – bifana & francesinha.
The bifana sandwich is very simple yet very delicious. In two words, the bifana is just a steak sandwich. It’s made from a bread roll filled with strips of pork (seasoned with garlic, spices and white wine). Basic, but so good!
Francesinha. Oh my, this is where it gets interesting. Have you ever heard about this famous Portuguese sandwich?
Originally from Porto, the Francesinha is once in a lifetime experience. I say that it’s once in a lifetime experience because it’s not something that you would like to eat every day (at least most people won’t). The francesinha is a delicious, but very heavy meal.
This sandwich is made from bread filled with three kinds of meat – ham, sausage, and steak, covered with melted cheese and a thick tomato & beer sauce. It’s often being served with a fried egg on the top and french fries.
After all this food, we had our main meal with great wine and awesome bread.
The last stop of our Porto Secret Food Tour was wine tasting! We took the upgraded drinks package.
That was the perfect finish of the tour.
I highly recommend everyone visiting Porto to give it a try. I believe this is the best way to try the authentic and delicious cuisine in the city.
Can’t wait for my next Secret Food Tour already!
P.S. the Secret Food Tour is offered in many destinations around the world (more than 40!). Some of the places where you can experience the same tour include Morocco, Mexico, Peru, Vietnam, Spain, Japan, Singapore, etc. Also, they have a tour in Lisbon, too. To help you decide which Portuguese city to visit and taste the local cuisine, check out this article on whether to visit Porto or Lisbon.
If you have additional questions about the tour or traveling in Porto and Portugal, don’t hesitate to contact me.
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Disclosure: Please note that some of the links in this post are affiliate links, which means I will receive a small commission if you make a booking after clicking. It comes at no extra cost to you but it helps me with the running of this site! As always, opinions are my own. Thank you!
I want to thank Secret Food Tours for having me as a guest in their Porto Secret Food Tour. As always, opinions are my own!