9 Must-Eat Places in Terceira
Updated: Aug 23, 2021
Here are the best restaurants in Terceira from brunch and lunch to dinner and dessert. WARNING: this blog might make you hungry.
On our recent 1 week trip to Terceira, besides exploring and adventuring which you can read more about here, we did our fair share of eating. After all, we're foodies, and to us, traveling is very much about the food. We tried numerous restaurants, many of which are not named here, simply because they weren't "wow" enough to recommend.
You can be sure that any restaurant on the list below will satisfy your taste buds!
Every restaurant mentioned below is vegetarian friendly as we eat mostly plant-based and fish. However, these restaurants have a little bit of everything, so no matter your dietary preferences, we've got you covered!
p.s they are not in any specific order.
1. Verde Maçã
What can I say, nestled in the heart of the city just off of the most popular city square “Praça Velha” lies one of my favourite breakfast/brunch restaurants in Terceira.
Verde maçã has a classic French café vibe, with Royal decor, patio seating, a wide range of specialty teas, and of course yummy breakfast! We sat out on the patio, where you can see all the action of the city, but still, the café vibe gives you a peaceful feeling.
We ordered the banana oat peanut butter pancakes and the avocado toast with a poached egg on top. My oh my, were they tasty! The pancakes were fluffy and thick - an absolute must to be considered a great pancake - they were moist with layers of bananas and peanut butter between each pancake and the walnuts added the perfect crunch. They were the perfect amount of sweet, and the fact that they were healthy (being made of oat flour) meant that I ate the entire thing without a single drop of guilt :) Overall a straight 10/10.
The avocado toast Nathan ordered was fabulous as well. The avocado was mashed with a blend of spices, onion and lemon - I would’ve liked a bit less lemon if I’m being honest but it was still delicious. The egg was cooked perfectly and added a nice pop of flavour and gooey-ness to the toast. If teleportation existed, let’s just say that I’d be there re-ordering the same thing right now.
We also had freshly squeezed orange juice and an espresso and both were angelic.
We actually came back a few days later to try some of their tea! We ordered “Winston Churchill’s favourite tea” and a Green jasmine tea. They came in two huge teapots where the freshly dried leaves and herbs were steeped (not pre-packaged in bags) and we had several cups of new tea flavours we really enjoyed.
The prices were very reasonable and the service was fantastic.
2. A Canadinha
The one thing I wish I could change about our trip to Terceira was knowing about “A Canadinha” sooner! Unfortunately, we found this hidden gem on our last day and I wasn’t that hungry that day so we only ordered a soup, one plate and one dessert along with a glass of wine.
Unfortunately, both our phones died before we got the plates, but we managed to take this photo before the phones died ... now THAT'S a glass of wine. ;)
This place quickly made it to my top 2 favourite places to eat in Terceira. We ordered Caldo Verde, arguably Portugal’s most popular soup and you can find it at almost every restaurant. It’s made up of puréed potato, collard greens, olive oil, black pepper, salt and a lot of traditional recipes use choriço - Portuguese sausage. But some variations of the soup just hit that special spot - and this one did. It was exactly what caldo verde should be!
We also got bacalhau com natas which is codfish baked with cream and potatoes. The Portuguese invented a good 100 ways to make codfish but if you ever see bacalhau com natas, just get it! I avoid dairy at all costs but I make an exception for this dish. It was perfectly spiced, salty but not too salty, and super creamy. What I liked about this dish at A Canadinha is that they actually used a lot of codfish in the dish, where a lot of restaurants fill it up with more cream and potatoes to save money instead of using more codfish.
We also saw “baba do camelo” on the dessert menu, and whenever I get the rare chance to see it on the menu, I’ll get it. Baba do Camelo directly translates to “camel drool”, except you become the camel. Think of it like a roasted caramel version of chocolate mousse. They literally got the mousse spot on - it was the best I’ve ever had, and I’ve had my fair share of baba do camelo. 🙈
The portions at this restaurant were very gracious anddddd the plates were the most fairly priced. In fact, we would have saved a lot of money if we knew about this restaurant before. Just to put it into perspective the large plate of soup was about €1.50, maybe less! You could eat just that for lunch and be full. We also had a basket of bread with butter and a huge glass of red wine with our meal. The entire meal came to €13 … food that filled up two people perfectly.
I can understand why this is a popular local spot, and I would definitely go back upon returning to Terceira. Kudos to the chefs!
3. Beira Mar
We heard about this hotspot from a newly made friend - Jen B (hey Jen!) and we’re super grateful for her recommendation. We got extremely lucky because you normally need a reservation in order to eat there. But we’re kind of last-minute deciders or, on the spot doers depending which way you look at it ;).
It was 11:30 am and Nathan quickly called to see if we could get a table for the two of us at 12 pm. The man answered and said, “right at 12 pm?” We said yes sure, and it was booked. We had no idea how lucky we were until we got there. We sat down on a table out on the patio just as they opened and after about 2 minutes the rush came in. All of the tables inside the restaurant were completely reserved, the line up stretched from inside the restaurant, down the stairs, well onto the street. Within 15 minutes every table was filled and it sounded like New Year's Eve. The service was fantastic, and the view, I mean common, look at that view.
We ordered the fish soup, the “Boca Negra” fish that came with a side plate of veggies, and we also ordered their grilled Polvo - grilled Octopus that came with sweet potato and a salad.
We accompanied that with a bottle of wine. We hadn’t eaten breakfast yet so yes, we had wine for breakfast, and it had the exact effect you’d think. Everything was spectacular, and not just because we were under the influence. The fish was moist and crispy, salty and fresh. The polvo was well cooked - which is very hard to do - and perfectly seasoned. The plate portions were HUGE, so we ended up taking what we couldn’t finish home with us - including the bottle of wine.
You can definitely share a plate here, but you won’t want to. Next time I am in Terceira I will be ordering their “Alcatra do polvo” which is octopus stew (my favourite way to eat octopus), which is only available through pre-order. So if you’re a sucker for polvo guisado/octopus stew, you’re welcome for the tip.
We were very happy about the entire experience (thanks Jen!)
I don’t know about you but I absolutely LOVE tapas-style eating. Partly because it brings in that homey feeling where everyone is sharing plates and experiencing the same flavours, but mostly because I like to try as many possible food items as I can 😅.
I visited Tasca das Tias a couple of years back when I first visited Terceira and loved it so much that it was the first thing we did when we arrived. We ended up eating at Tasca das Tias twice on this trip. The first time, Nathan was still recovering from the nausea of the ferry, which you can read about here. So we ordered the bolinhas de alheira, a soup for him and the “Camarao as Tias” (shrimp made their way) for me. The soup was great, the bolinhas de alheira (which are basically little fried balls of one type of Portuguese sausage made from meats and bread) were also fantastic. But my goodness gracious, the shrimp was the star of that meal. It was drenched in an olive oil/butter garlic sauce, perfectly spicy and just hit the spot. I’m a bit spoiled because my mom makes the best shrimp on the planet and she takes out the dirt that naturally builds up at the spine of the shrimp, so I would’ve liked that in the dish but I understand that cleaning every single shrimp is way too much work for a restaurant.
When we came back the second time with more appetite, we ordered a fish soup, fish and chips and 2 gin and tonics.
Unfortunately, I had no idea I'd be starting a blog back then so I didn't take pictures of each dish/meal - especially at Tasca Das Tias because the food looks and smells so good that there's no time for pictures. But I promise I'll get better guys!! 😭
It was arguably the best fish soup I’ve ever had. The broth was spicy, salty, and strong - I love strong flavours. For the fish & chips we asked to change the regular potatoes it came with to their famous “Lascas de batatas” instead, which they graciously did. The “Lascas de batatas” are literally the skins of the potatoes that they peel off for other dishes, but they don’t throw out the skins! They fry them into the best frikken fries/chips you could ever imagine.. let’s just say we ordered another batch. The fish was also lightly battered which made them crispy and brought out the natural taste and freshness of the fish. It was moist, and came with tartar sauce - my fave!
Things I recommend from Tasca das Tias based on the 3 times I’ve been there: EVERYTHING IN THE “PETISCOS” PART OF THE MENU and “Filetes de Abrotea panada” aka the fish and chips.
The vibe is so cool at Tasca das Tias, it’s always busy, with warm modern decor and upbeat music. The service is always 100%, and they have plenty of drink choices from their bar.
It’s right in the center of Angra, and it’s pretty reasonably priced for the quality. For example our dinner the second time came to about 26 euros/$40 CAD. It can get a bit more on the expensive side if you overindulge - but you’re on vacation and trust me, you’ll want to try everything!
5. Ginsu Sushi
There aren’t too many places that can make proper sushi in the azores. In Toronto, I tried at least 20 different sushi restaurants, so I’ve have my fair share to know what’s okay and what’s great. Ginsu, in Praia da Vitória, was amongst the best I’ve ever had. We ordered two teas, the Gyoza Rasai for a starter, the Miso ramen to split and we ordered a mixed plate of 16 pieces of sushi. The vegetable gyozas were so flavourful and perfectly cooked that we debated coming back that night just for them.
The ramen was authentic - I haven’t found any other place in the Azores that does ramen, let alone one of the best I’ve tried. The ingredients were fresh, the broth was tasty and the portion was big enough to feed both of us without having to eat anything else.
Now for the sushi, *sighs*, I wish I had room for double the pieces we ate. The fish was fresh, they didn’t overdo the amount of rice wrapped around them, the rice had taste, the selection was diverse and fun! The flavours exploded in your mouth and each piece was different and unique. The restaurant inside has an elegant but hip vibe, service was good and the washrooms and the entire place were very clean. I would recommend making a reservation if you’re going for dinner because it’s almost always full, but for lunch, it’s a lot easier to find a table.
The price for two drinks, 1 large ramen, and 16 pieces of high quality sushi was pretty reasonable at about €30/$45 CAD for the two of us!
Everywhere across Azores you’ll see restaurants and cafes that proudly showcase that they have “Quinta Dos Açores” ice cream available for sale. So when we found out that the main factory and headquarters was in Terceira, we saw fit to head over there and try it straight from the source! What we didn’t know was that Quinta did Açores is way more than an ice cream company. They’re a complete dairy factory producing milks, cheeses, icecreams, butter and even have a few cafes and full on restaurants! We were confused to see the entire second floor of the building completely packed with people eating dinner! We came here after dinner to have dessert so that’s what we stuck to, but based off of how many people were there and waiting to be seated, we would be open to having dinner there in the future.
We actually got declined seating because there were already too many people waiting to be seated before closing, so we ordered take-out instead and ate in the lobby area.
Note: this photo is not mine, but it's exactly how our crepe looked.
We ordered a crepe to share with maracujá ice cream and pistachio ice cream. The crepe was a traditional French crepe, thin, slightly crispy, light, and perfect. The ice creams were exactly what you imagine when you think of the perfect ice cream - creamy and strong, fresh flavours. Our favourite was the pistachio which tasted like ice cream I tried back in Italy. The roasted pistachio’s inside the ice cream gave a nice crunch and proved that it was made with REAL pistachios not just some fake extract. Again, I avoid dairy but I needed to try the OG ice cream of the Azores and it was well worth it!
We saw QB restaurant was one of the best-rated restaurants on Google and a quick 5-minute drive from the centre of Angra so we knew we had to check it out. We originally went around 3 pm but the restaurant was closed - the snack bar downstairs was open so we had some calamari and a small pizza. The calamari was fantastic, the pizza was okay. However, we really wanted to try the restaurant, which is on the second floor, because the photos on Google looked other-worldly. So we came back the next day for dinner.
This was such a highlight of the trip.
To start they put a basket of hot bread on the table - now if you’re not from Portugal you might not know the golden rule - you touch, you pay. If you don’t refuse the bread basket at most restaurants they add it to your bill. However, the bread was warm and looked so good that we just needed to have it. We ordered a fantastic little cheese and jam board to accompany it. I feel like I’m always saying I avoid dairy but we keep ordering dairy plates 😅 To be fair, Nathan eats most of it and he doesn’t have the same issues I do with dairy so it works.
Back to the experience, we ordered the Octopus carpaccio not really knowing what to expect and to my surprise, I think I found a new favourite way of eating octopus! It was so thinly sliced that the octopus literally melted in your mouth. It was on top of a beautiful tangy light vinaigrette, with pomegranates, microgreens, and lime zest.
We then ordered the “Torricato de broa de milho” to share - which was cornbread with hummus, grilled peppers, and cucumber - it sounds simple but it was so intrinsic and unique and exploded with flavour.
We split the yellow curry with banana, sweet potato, onions, pineapple, microgreens and salsa. It was really tasty! In our opinion, the actual curry could have had a little less Lemon to make it less acidic but we still enjoyed it.
We had gin with our meal which was done nicely.
Our server could have been a little more hospitable if I’m being honest. I’m not sure if it’s because we look very young or because we share a lot of plates but he didn’t have many expressions and just seemed frustrated - it was okay though, we all have those days. This was one of our more expensive bills in Terceira but it was 1000% worth it.
I can’t wait to try new dishes when we go back to Q.B. Restaurant!
Please do me a favour, don’t leave Terceira without trying Terceira’s very own specialty dessert - Queijada de Dona Amelia.
The best place to have this delicious treat is at “O Forno”. It’s a cute little pastry shop in the heart of Angra, serving coffee and delicious pastries - one being the island’s queijada: Queijada da Dona Amelia. This special treat is kind of like a mix of toffee and gingerbread (but not overly strong) and is commonly made with nutmeg, cane sugar, regular and cornflour, cinnamon, eggs, sugar, and butter.
The history of this treat is quite interesting. It started off as a cake, but the locals turned this into a queijada aka a tartlet (small tart) as an offering to Queen Dona Amelia and the King when they visited Angra in 1901. The queijada is special because it is made from the spices brought back from the courageous sailor men who went out exploring the world and who brought back with them spices from India! In this way, they offered the Queen a big piece of their culture and bravery. You’ll want a queijada to yourself so no sharing here! :)
We also went back a few times and tried other desserts that were all delicious, one that stood out being their chocolate muffin stuffed with wild sautéed berries/frutos silvestres.
If you leave without trying a queijada da Dona Amelia at O Forno, you didn’t fully experience Terceira!
Again, not my photo but it's the exact dish we had.
How we found Caneta was a funny story. We originally wanted to try a restaurant called Ti Choa but when we got there a family had booked out the entire restaurant for a party - only in Portugal! 😅 At this point we were very hungry so I quickly looked up nearby restaurants and found Caneta had great reviews. Since we were getting around by our newly purchased scooter we looked up and noticed these random clouds rolling in. We took directions to Caneta and believe it or not the second we got under their front entrance canopy it started pouring TROPICAL RAIN style! We took this as a sign that we were exactly where we needed to be.
The place was packed, so while we waited to be seated we decided to enjoy a nice glass of Porto wine, which was delicious and the perfect aperitif.
Now we don’t eat meat (unless the rare occasion where we try one bite of something special - but no more than a bite), but if you’re a meat lover, we could tell right away from the smell that this is the place for you! A lot of their menu is meat-based but they also had fish and vegetarian options. They seem to make a bomb Alcatra which is Terceira’s most famous dish - meat stew.
We ended up ordering the grilled squid (lulas grelhadas) which is the photo above, and the “Vegetais a Brás” (not sure if it’s called that but it’s one of the only things in the vegetarian part of the menu so you should find it easily). The food was AMAZING. The lulas were fresh, slathered in garlic oil, with fluffy boiled potatoes, and a little salad. The vegetarian plate tasted like codfish - which is exactly what the dish was trying to do and they succeeded! It was probably one of the best vegetarian dishes I’ve ever had.
The service was great, the place was fun and the food was outstanding. It’s a bit of a drive from the city of Angra - but totally worth it!
I hope this guide to the best restaurants in Terceira makes your trip as memorable as ours was! Feel free to leave your comments below on your experiences at these places too.
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