Portugal isn't known for its great gastronomy, and outside of Lisbon its hard to find restaurants without the decor of a UK public toilet with stark white tiling from floor to ceiling, though these restaurants run by their owners with the wife generally doing the cooking do delicious home-cooked food.
In the little visited Alentejo I would recommend Estremoz Saturday market in its large marble lined main square, where even the kerb stones are made of marble. Here little old ladies sell whatever is fresh in their vegetable garden and from their fruit trees, and their husbands sell their olive oil, olives and honey. Ask "posso provar" can I try in Portuguese and everyone will be willing to offer you a taste. The market is famous for its cheeses and cured meats all hanging on public display ripe for a tasting. After you have shopped try a tiny restaurant near to one of the old town gates, restaurant Azul, where every Saturday the kitchen offers three main meals, usually one fish and two types of pork, sometimes chicken served with plenty of homemade chunky bread, fresh olives, chips and salad. A main meal will cost around five euros without wine, hang your flat cap on the wall and sit down and enjoy!
Estremoz market, every saturday early until around 12.30pm, many buses from Lisbon or drive from Lisbon around 1 1/2 hours
Azul: Rua Victor Cordon n0 39, 7100-560, Estremoz, Portugal
Google map: bit.ly/LlaQ8W
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