original post 7/15/22
To start off with some irony, after you have sold all of your precious and well chosen belongings in order to move abroad, one of the first things you will likely need to do upon arrival to your new country is... buy some of those things again.
Yes. It's kind of annoying. Yes. It sort of feels like a waste of time and money. It's just a reality and part of the process for the vast majority of expats and immigrants. So now that we have that out of the way..
It's even more helpful when that same place has a restaurant on site so you can refuel after the exhaustion that will more likely ensue. Let's check out Ikea's restaurant at Mar Shopping in Loulé Portugal!
As you can see, the restaurant seating area is stylish and truly massive and it also extends outside.
Some of the soft drinks available at the self serve beverage area at Ikea restaurant in Loulé Algarve Portugal.
Prices at Ikea's restaurant remain quite affordable from vegetable soup for 0,50€ and full meals for €3-9. Beer and wine are also available as are a variety of desserts, and side salads, fruits etc.
Pernil de Porco (Smoked Pork Knuckle)
Almost every Portuguese person in front of us in line ordered the Pernil de Porco and a wise friend told us before we left to always do what the locals do ;)
I've had a lot of pork in my life and must admit this ranks at the top of the list. Incredibly tender, juicy, and flavorful. Even though we were eating outside, sweltering under the blazing sun in an effort to stay a distance from the crowd... it was worth it. We chose broccoli and mashed potatoes as sides for the meal which was the most expensive at €9 but fed both of us!
Not even a cheesecake person, but the berry cheesecake at Ikea was super yummy.
How To Get A Free Pastel de Nata At Ikea:
At the end of the restaurant line you can buy a pastel de nata and a cafe for 0,50€.
Or you can buy a cafe for ...0,50€.
So why not snag both for the same price?!
As you finish the meal with a cafe and a nata, take a moment to enjoy where you at. Look at the view from the terrace of the Ikea restaurant in Loulé Portugal. A beautiful location, hard to capture in a hasty pano.
More Algarve Restaurant Reviews:
TooGoodToGo is a free app designed to prevent food waste by enabling customers to buy a restaurant's left overs at a discount. You reserve a slot and pay in advance. Then, at a designated time you go to the business and show the app to pick up your order. You never know exactly what you will get since it depends on what sold that particular day.
TooGoodToGo can be a fun way to prevent food waste, discover new places and save money in Portugal, whether you're here as a tourist or live here. But remember each days offerings are unique and without guarantee, so set your expectations as such that some boxes will be amazing and others just okay. In the end I think it evens out! And you have an opportunity to rate and give feedback regarding the contents of your mystery boxes.
Curious what your box may include? Here are some of our personal real life examples:
Celeiro - Loulé
Pickup 10:00 am - 10:00 pm
Hussel - Too Good To Go Chocolates & Sweets
Hussel is a German confectionary shop with a location in Portugal at Algarve Shopping in Guia. Our toogoodtogo hussel bag contained a package of 8 truffles, a package of 6 milk chocolate fish, and 250 grams of Baiser-Eier Bunte Schaumzucker-Eier. They are sort of like a large jelly bean, but inside is a not quite marshmallow, foamy sugar center.
Tip: Hussel PT Too Good To Go pick up window is one of the most flexible. If you're at Algarve Shopping in Guia, near Albufeira, go ahead and grab a treat!
Pão do Povo - Too Good To Go Pastry Box
Pão de Povo is a cash-only restaurant and bakery on the Main Street in Quarteira. The surprise box was loaded with a variety of beautiful pastries definitely past prime.
Tip: If your pastries are past prime, try sticking them in the oven for a bit. It's surprising, but depending on the pastry type, it can make a huge difference!
Vila Galé Marina - Too Good To Go Breakfast Box
Pickup 11:30am -12:30pm
The pequeno-almoço (breakfast) box from the Vila Galé Marina Hotel was a cake sized box filled with scrambled eggs, bacon, mini hotdogs, assorted rolls, cheese, ham, and a couple of sweet pastries. It was so much food we ate a breakfast meal from it, later took sandwiches to the beach with the rolls/ham/cheese, and still had more bacon left which we sliced finely and fried as toppings for soups salads and other meals the following days!
Tip: There are two Vila Galé Hotels in very close proximity. Be aware that the Vila Galé at the walkway to the beach is not the Marina location. Also, when you do go to the Marina location, we went to the desks where you typically check in to the hotel and they knew right away about the box "Caixa" (ky-shuh).
Rei do Churrasco - Too Good To Go - Grilled Lunch For 2
Rei do Churrasco (meaning barbecue/grill king) is a local restaurant in Quarteira serving delicious grilled meals and Madeiran specialties.
Grelhados para Dois - Almoço included 2 containers essentially amounting to an entire grilled chicken and a lot of French fries
Tip: Definitely bring a bag to carry your order in. We walked from Vilamoura the foil containers were hot to carry since we forgot our bag!
Mourapão - Too Good To Go Pastry Box
Box included: 4 pasteis de nata, loaf cake, snicker doodle, S cookie, rolls with dried fruit inside.
Mourapão is a great restaurant and bakery located in Vilamoura near the marina. Absolutely worth a visit at full price and if you're around when a toogoodtogo box is available, don't hesitate!
---> See our dedicated & ongoing Mourapão Review here!
Vilamoura Restaurant Reviews:
original post 7/14/22
Filed Under: Vilamoura Restaurant Reviews • Algarve Restaurant Reviews • Portugal • Restaurant Review
Mourapão will always hold a special place in our hearts as it's the first place we ate after arriving in Portugal on the D7 visa. After those hectic final weeks waiting for the visa to arrive, selling belongings, hoping nothing important was forgotten, visiting with family, traveling and moving internationally for the first time (& during a pandemic!), handling canceled flights etc.... to finally arrive in Vilamoura was surreal. Nothing felt more simultaneously comforting and rewarding than the prospect of a pizza and a pastel de nata at the same time.
Located in Vilamoura near the Marina, Mourapão is a short walk from the secret apartment.
With indoor and outdoor seating available as well as an extensive menu, mourapão can cater to just about any guest.
Bonus, it's open until at least 10pm!
Here's what we have tried:
Tigelada is a traditional Portuguese dessert made with eggs, milk, and sugar. Typically baked in a wood fired oven inside a Portuguese ceramic bowl, this sweet dessert is all about the texture as shown in the photo above.
Pastel de Nata
Pastel de Nata is easily the most popular pastry you must try in Portugal with its flakey crust, pudding like custard filling and optional cinnamon topping. Remember when we made Pasteis de nata at home?
For an optimal experience, be sure to dine in at Mourapao and enjoy classic pizza made with fresh ingredients.
(Although you can get take out or pizza delivery in Vilamoura through apps like Glovo fyi) Take a look at that pizza slice - the cheese pull, the browning, the sheen... If this pizza is for you, you will know it. ;)
Discover more Pizza in Portugal here
Best Places To Stay in Vilamoura, Algarve Portugal
Algarve Restaurant Reviews
We're Justin and Marissa We love to travel and eat!