On a recent trip to Portugal, one of Savor team’s guides signed up for the Viator food tour in Lisbon.
Turns out, taking tours — be it food or other types of tours such as hiking or sustainable, is something Shawna highly recommends and does herself whenever she’s traveling, especially when she’s in a different country on her own. However, this was her first official food tour.
“Tours are a great way to get to know more, on a local level, about where you are. I took the food tour on my first day in Lisbon, so I ended up being familiar with the area, which was great because then I had places to go back to,” Shawna said.
This food tour had about five food/drink stops in three-four hours with plenty of interesting history learned along the way, much like Savor Saint Louis but with any community and different culture, that’s where the similarities ended.
“We took a ferry. That’s one thing I can cross off my list now,” Shawna said. “And there was more drinking, as in tastes of alcohol on this tour. Our first stop was a sample of ginjinha — a cherry liquor and Lisbon’s official drink — a doozy on an empty stomach while still jet lagged.”
Yet somehow she managed.
If you know anything about Lisbon, you know it has hills. And this walking food tour consisted of lots of walking up and down and up and down, through about four neighborhoods.
Other stops included a cafe for a taste of pastel de nata — a creme filled custard tart and a small coffee, a sample of Azorean cheese with quince marmalade at a 100-year-old grocery store. After the short ferry ride the tour goers found themselves trying prawns, lupin beans, bacalao (salted cod) fish cakes and a Vinho Verde, which Shawna recalled as being “champagne-like.” Somewhere in there was also a sample of port wine.
Her favorite food? The prawns, “I ended up eating most of them as the others on this tour didn’t care for them.”
She also said her guide was “fantastic. Margarida was engaging, spoke great English and you could tell she really loves Lisbon and its history.”
One of the pieces of history that most stuck with Shawna was a little church “not fully restored. Still burned from a massacre in 1506. It had a dark past, but today the area is committed to tolerance.”
As a first-time food tour taker, Shawna would definitely take another food tour. In the meantime, you can find her giving tours with us in the Delmar Loop.