Porto Tasty: 5 francesinhas you shouldn't let them slip away

5 francesinhas you shouldn't let them slip away

Whenever someone talks about food in Porto, among other options, there's always "the one". Francesinha is one of the city's best souvenirs and we bring you five places where you can enjoy it.

Francesinha is a sandwich-based dish, dipped in hot beer sauce. Served in a plate, it may present all kinds of meat, as chorizo, sausage, ham and steak. It's all covered by a slightly thick cheese cover, which may be topped by an egg and an olive. The sauce is mostly spicy and made from beer and tomato, most of the times. It can be gently served with fries.

Literally meaning "little fench girl", the dish is considered to be inspired by the french croque-monsieur - basically a ham and cheese sandwich. Some say that Daniel Silva, a Portuguese immigrant who returned from France, is the mastermind behind this beauty. Others say it's even older, dating from the French Invasion, whose troops would eat sandwiches with every type of meat they could find (and also cheese). But there was something missing: the sauce - mainly hot sauce - is actually the biggest difference among hundreds, if not thousands of francesinha varieties. We don't have a webpage that long, so here's a list of five of the greatest places where you can eat spicy, hot and flavorful francesinhas.


Distinguished as one of the best francesinha places many times, Yuko is a cozy tavern which reflects pure Portuguese identity. Near S. João Hospital, the place welcomes its clients with incredibly refreshing warmth, even for a hot night. Its francesinhas promise to let you hotter, though.
Yuko's Tavern. Normally, a francesinha goes well with a fresh pint. Photography: Yuko
Opened from Monday to Saturday:
Lunch - 12.30 pm to 2.30pm
Dinner - 7.30pm to 2am
Costa Cabral Street, 2331 Porto
Metro: Line D (Hospital de S. João)
225482291 | Facebook @YukoTavern

Capa Negra II

Located near Boavista and Palácio de Cristal, Capa Negra II, as any francesinha restaurant, claims to have the best ones in Porto, although when they say it, they mean serious business. With their main sandwiches ranging from 6 to 12 euros, you may enjoy a pleasant meal before a night out.
You may get a plate full of tasty fries when ordering your francesinha. Photography: TripAdvisor.
Opened every day:
12pm to 1.45am, except Sundays (12pm to midnight)
Campo Alegre Street, 191 Porto
Metro: Any line, except line D (Casa da Música)
226078380 | Facebook @Restaurante Capa Negra

Cufra Grill

Near the seashore, roasted sardine rules, but among all of the fish dishes, there's a restaurant serving meat with a fantastic view to the Atlantic Ocean. Right before the neighboring city of Matosinhos and with Parque da Cidade next door, this grill house is a great choice for group dinners by the beach. Savouring its francesinhas may vary from 8 to 15 euros, but the restaurant also offers some snacks with francesinha's special sauce.
If you're willing to contemplate the sea while eating a hot francesinha, this is the right spot. Photography: Cufra Grill
Opened every day (except holidays):
12pm to midnight
Via do Castelo do Queijo - Edifício Transparente, 2nd floor Matosinhos - Porto
Metro: Line A (Matosinhos Sul)
229387884 | 915336573
Facebook @restaurante.cufragrill | Instagram @cufragrill

Tappas Caffé 

Tappas Caffé originally started on the other side of the river, in Candal, Vila Nova de Gaia. From 2002 until today, the restaurant started to get famous for its francesinhas, which allowed them to build a franchise. With 7 restaurants nowadays (including one in Lisbon), they are proud to be making these sandwiches on traditional wood ovens, guaranteeing a strong flavor.
Tapas' francesinhas are always made in wood ovens. Photography: Tapas Caffé
Opened from Tuesday to Sunday:
Lunch - 12pm to 2.30pm (except on Sunday)
Dinner - 7pm to 10.30pm
Estrada da Circunvalação, 7674F Porto
Metro: Line D (Hospital S. João)
936368485 | Facebook @TapasCaffe

Café Turista

Outside the city, the suburbs also know the recipe for good francesinhas. In Maia, Café Turista is just in front of the tallest building in the north of Portugal. With a terrace and a stylish decoration, the restaurant makes sure you can taste Porto without being near the Douro river.
A beer near the plate is the best case scenario. Photography: Foursquare
Opened every day:
7am to midnight (8am on Sundays)
Dr. José Vieira de Carvalho Square - Maia
Metro: Line C (Fórum Maia)
229485492 | Facebook @Café Turista

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Main photography: Lúcia Costa

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