While on the train to Sintra from downtown Lisbon, I wrote up some snippets on the fabulous days of food we had, specifically the decadent pasteis de nata. It was so good, I decided to do a review of the best egg tarts we found in Lisbon. I only have 3 listed here but trust me, we went to bakeries every day...
Right in Bairro Alto, to the side of a square with a smattering of tourists sitting about, was the highly rated Manteigaria Bakery. We only happened upon this after deciding to take a short break from walking and noticed a bakery across the way that was chock-full of people. This cozy bakery specializes in natas and coffee. Customers either had to stand in a single file line to to consume their pastries by the bar or take it to the many available benches in the square.
The tart was warm and super sweet, even fresher and sweeter than the other ones I had tried up to that point. The filling was more of a pudding consistency than custard and the crust was more dense than flaky. While a great egg tart, I still preferred Orion's at that point. Perhaps we should have accompanied the nata with the shots of expresso or cups of cappuccino that everyone else had (I was way too caffeinated throughout my entire time in Portugal).
Pasteis de Belem
Of course we ended up at Pasteis de Belem on our short pass through of Belem on our way to Cascais. The queue was out the door for the 1.10 euro egg tarts with a mix of both locals and tourists. I have to point out that at this point, Andrew had come to a conclusion that he thought natas were mediocre and only tolerated my quest for them throughout Lisbon. His only request was that I do not have more than 1 every five minutes... which was hard given that bakeries are as abundant in Lisbon as Starbucks are in NYC. There was one on every corner! His primary concern was the highly possible need to purchase an extra seat on the plane for my happy fat bum full of natas.
The waitress packed my single egg tart together with a package each of powdered sugar and cinnamon. We decided to walk the short block from the bakery to the botanic garden and eat it there. The tart was hands down the most savery I had the entire trip which made sense why they provided the packets of cinnamon and sugar. The crust was crunchy and had a roasted almond taste. I definitely understand how the bakery was able to sell the tarts as singles, dozens and even by a box of FIFTY! I highly recommend this bakery and enjoying it in the nearby botanic garden...but beware of the ducks...they are not shy once they hear the crinkling sounds of food in a bag.
Constantly updating my Portugal map - recently added some Lisbon foodie spots!
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