Pastéis de Belém


Copyright: Alice Butenko/
DESTINATIONS portugal lisbon Cafes Pastéis de Belém

Pastéis de Belém

Pastéis de Belém is the home to Lisbon’s most famous pastry: pastel de Belém or pasteis de nata — an egg custard tart, which pairs perfectly with a bica — the Portuguese espresso. The recipe is said to have come from the monks in the adjacent Jerónimo monastery, and its secret is preserved by three bakers who bake them every morning behind locked and barred doors. About 10,000 a day get eaten.


After a day of sightseeing, find a table at a pavement cafe on Rossio Square. Savour one (or two!) Portuguese custard tart and restore your energy. Take in the milling of the crowd with the backdrop of the Baixa neighbourhood — the flat city centre that dates from the 18th century.