I would say this is a place of consensus: delighting with Portuguese traditional gastronomy both a local loyal clientele and tourists since 1939. Abadia is located at the heart of Porto’s old town, right in a small street parallel to the lively Santa Catarina street.
The name “Abadia” translates as “abbey” and legend has it that it is related to the abbeys where pilgrims on their way to Santiago de Compostela (Spain) stopped for a meal and a couple of hours rest, recharging batteries for the rest of their way. Nowadays the only pilgrims you can meet here are those who worship traditional gastronomy made with the best selected ingredients; yet, the hospitable spirit remains in this house.
At this point you should be asking what are these delicacies on the menu: for starters, we can talk about entrées like roasted lamb, multiple amazing ways of cooking dry codfish; “Abadia octopus”, grilled fish or my absolute favorite “Abadia tripe”. Save room for dessert as the choices are multiple, sweet and not a sin: chocolate mousse, sliced fruit, profiteroles or the cheesecake.
The decoration is in line with the will to keeping faithful to tradition: the restaurant recreates the ambiance of a picturesque eatery, although it is refined. Abadia is open from 11:45am to 3:30pm and at night from 18:30pm to 11pm; the restaurant closes on Sundays.
What you may not know is that Abadia has also served – and, thus, delighted – some famous personalities, not only Portuguese – like the famous writer, José Saramago, or the former Prime Minister and currently President of Portugal, Aníbal Cavaco Silva – but also international stars, like Sophia Loren. One of the owners is proud to state that people come long distances to taste their food and “Russians love our food” he assures. Highly recommendable for a taste of genuine Portugal.
Really close to Abadia is Pitch, a bar and disco if you’re interested in having a drink and dancing the calories off! You can also go to Rivoli’s theatre bar, a couple of steps away. Maus hábitos, up the street in front of Porto’s Coliseu, is a nice alternative. Our you can walk towards the Entertainment District and let yourself go with the flow!