Be Transported to Portugal Without the Flight at Fado Portuguese Cuisine

Be Transported to Portugal Without the Flight at Fado Portuguese Cuisine

It’s time to enjoy the traditional dishes and famed seafood of Portugal right here in St. Pete at Fado Portuguese Cuisine. Situated on the cusp of downtown, on 4th Street N, Fado is a wonderful restaurant for a date night, celebrations or just about anytime. The ambiance is simple and classy and you get the feeling that everyone seated is either a regular or is a Portuguese food lover. I especially loved the Azulejo décor at the bar which transports you to Portugal. The table next to us said they were visiting St. Pete and they always like to try new Portuguese restaurants in the cities they travel to as they were both born and raised in Portuguese culture and traditions. It was really nice talking with them to hear their thoughts on the food (they loved it), and recommendations for us to try.

Fado Portuguese Cuisine Interior Bar
Interior Bar

Fado serves fresh fish and seafood along with standout bacalhau dishes and much more.

The menu was slightly unfamiliar to me as I’ve not explored Portuguese cuisine before. Luckily with the menu translations and honest recommendations, we were able to enjoy a variety of unique flavors from this beautiful country. The main takeaway is that cod is their specialty and comes in all forms, from dried to salted to smothered in cheese and more. Standout dishes were the octopus and of course, cod fritters.

Whether you prefer red or white, the sangria is a great place to start. We ordered the delicious red sangria pitcher and it was terrific. It’s sweet, fruity and boozy.

Fado Portuguese Cuisine Red Sangria
Red Sangria

For an appetizer, I knew I wanted to dive right into a seafood classic. The Frigideirinha De Polvo E Lulas set the bar very high for the rest of the evening. This dish is octopus and squid sautéed and served in a cast iron skillet. The octopus and squid were both so tender and enticing, smothered in a mouthwatering, buttery sauce that you’ll want to soak up with every piece of tableside bread. Every bite is perfectly seasoned and is melt in your mouth delicious. I’d highly recommend ordering this to start.

Fado Portuguese Cuisine Frigideirnha De Polvo E Lulas
Frigideirnha De Polvo E Lulas (Octopus and squid sautéed and served in a cast-iron skillet)

Next up, my friend couldn’t stop saying how good the salted codfish fritters were so I took her word for it and quickly fell in love. The Pastéis De Bacalhau are a serious treat. It’s the best of both worlds here because the outside is crisp and the inside is warm and soft. The hot sauce made my tastebuds dance with its tangy hotness. These were the first introduction I had to cod at Fado and I was already blown away by the quality. The fritters are a staple if you’re looking for a comforting starter.

Fado Portuguese Cuisine Poasteis De Bacalhau
Poasteis De Bacalhau

Are you ready for this? The Polvo à Lagareiro is a quintessentially Portuguese dish, which features octopus with onions, tomatoes, peppers and red potatoes, all drizzled in Portuguese olive oil. This is the most tender octopus I’ve ever had. It was prepared absolutely perfectly and truly did melt in your mouth. I never knew that octopus could be so delicate until I had it at Fado. The veggies were also very tasty and seasoned well. Eating this felt like I should be celebrating something because it was a major treat.

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Fado Portuguese Cuisine Polvo A Lagareiro
Polvo A Lagareiro

The moment you’ve been waiting for…cod. The Bacalhau Com Queijo Da Serra is baked salted codfish (bone-in) smothered with Queijo da Serra (Portuguese cheese) served with baked potatoes and vegetables. Divine is the first word that came to my mind when I tried it. It’s soft, warm and salted. The Portuguese cheese has sweet and sharp characteristics to it and the texture is a mix of smooth and somewhat creamy. The quality of the cod itself was beyond great. I can certainly understand all of the talk about cod now after having it here. The flavors and preparation were outstanding.

Fado Portuguese Cuisine Bacalhau Com Queijo Da Serra
Bacalhau Com Queijo Da Serra (baked salted codfish (bone-in) smothered with Queijo da Serra (Portuguese cheese) served with sliced baked potatoes and vegetables)

Where are my dessert people at? The Doce Da Avo will help finish off your dining experience in the best way possible. This is “Grandma’s Sweet” layers of sweet cream, Maria biscuits and an egg yolk crème topping. I thought I was full from the previous bites, but I nearly licked this clean. The layers of sweet creaminess are light and smooth which pair so well with Maria biscuits which is like a Graham cracker. It’s served cold and doesn’t make you feel too full after. Even if you think you don’t have room for it, I’d recommend treating yourself to this traditional, delicious dessert.

Fado Portuguese Cuisine Doce Da Avo Side
Doce Da Avo Side
Fado Portuguese Cuisine Doce Da Avo Top
Doce Da Avo Top

My overall experience here was phenomenal. Honestly, I don’t know that I would visit this place if it wasn’t for this review only because I’ve never had Portuguese food before, but man, I am so happy to be a part of St. Petersburg Foodies where I’m pushed to try new fares. I’m very excited to spread the word about my blissful time at Fado Portuguese Cuisine and all of the scrumptious food I had.

Fado Portuguese Cuisine Exterior
Fado Portuguese Cuisine
  • Readers Rating
  • Rated 4.3 stars
    4.3 / 5 (23 )
  • Your Rating

  • Fado Portuguese Cuisine
  • (727) 346-5389
  • Portuguese, Bacalhau
    • Wed - Thu 5:00pm - 10:00pm
    • Fri - Sun 12:00pm - 10:00pm
  • View menu
  • 435 5th Ave N, St. Petersburg, FL 33701, US

Fado is a Portuguese restaurant serving authentic cuisine at its very best.

DISCLAIMER: Kevin, Lori, Abby, Haley, Lindsey & Mahika do not dine anonymously (this would be impossible) and we sometimes get free food (though never expected). However, we dine with the locals and we support our own. You will always get honesty in a respectful manner. We do not include any large national or regional chains in our ratings and reviews. We focus on independent locally owned eateries exclusively.

PLEASE NOTE: Reviews reflect a certain moment in time. Some restaurants stay extremely consistent over many years, and some change for the better or worse. Some things that may change are: chefs, recipes, food suppliers, ingredients, philosophies, ownership, etc. We always hope that you have the same good, or great experience we had.

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