Francesinha. Who comes to Porto and doesn't eat the typical Francesinha? It is a mandatory requirement! The story goes that this dish was inspired by the version of the French sandwich croque-monsieur, hence the name Francesinha. This sandwich is usually composed of sausage, beef steak, fresh sausage, ham and covered with cheese, which ends up melting when in the oven. Finished with a typical sauce on top (usually spicy) and accompanied with french fries and fried egg (optional). Finish, it's just for the braves!
The truth is that you can find a restaurant with Francesinha at every corner in Porto, but here are the best options that the city has to offer!
1. Lado B Café
Lado B is one of the most respected houses of Francesinha in Porto, and by many considered the best of Invicta. In the heart of the city, in front of the famous Porto’s Coliseum, the queues usually accumulate for the one so desired. Reservation is required in advance. The restaurant has a very informal atmosphere, with staff who are very friendly.
Location: Rua Passos Manuel 190, 4000-382 Porto
Hours: 12h - 22h
2. Cervejaria Brasão
The Cervejaria Brasão has 3 restaurants, all of them not to be missed: Aliados, Coliseu and Foz. Although they have many other dishes, the specialty is Francesinha. The restaurant's atmosphere is very friendly, original and contemporary. Brasão has a selection of craft beers, which you can harmonize with your Francesinha. Ask the waiter that he will recommend the perfect beer for you, matching your preferences. It is also best to book. Stay with the motto of the house: "It is a Portuguese brewery for sure!"
Location: Rua Passos Manuel 205, 4000-385 Porto
Hours: Lunch: monday to friday 12h - 15h; saturday and sunday 11h30 - 13h
Dinner: monday to friday 19h - 22h30; closed on saturday and sunday
3. Café Santiago
Founded in 1959, it is one of the icons of the city of Porto and Francesinha is, without a doubt, his specialty. The restaurant continues with a family structure, privileging the quality of the ingredients: bread baked in a wood oven, mortadella, fresh sausage grilled together with sausage, tender beef steak, ham and cheese that melts into a consistency perfect for the sauce. Francesinha is made by hand and the sauce is unique, kept secret from generation to generation - the “Essência Santiago”. It is impossible to leave without a smile!
Location: Rua Passos Manuel 226, 4000-382 Porto
Hours: 08h - 23h every day, closed on sunday
The Cufra restaurant is located in Boavista and, although it is not in a City Center location, it is very easy to get there. Its name is full of symbology: cufra is synonymous with Oasis, and is also the largest oasis in the Sahara desert. Management focuses on offering a phenomenal dining experience. In a pleasant space, if you want a typical restaurant in the city of Oporto, with beautiful Francesinhas and accompany the locals in their meals, then Cufra is, without a doubt, the restaurant to go to. The restaurant has a huge offer, particularly Francesinhas (7 varieties), but also seafood, and other typical dishes.
Location: Avenida da Boavista 2504, 4100-119 Porto
Hours: Lunch: 12h -15h / Dinner: 18h -00h; every day, except monday