This is a restaurant you would probably not find if you're not a local — and a well-informed one. For those in the know, Retiro do Isca is a bustling meeting point for large families, groups of friends and couples at all times of the night. Yes, because the Portuguese like to have their dinners late, especially in summer, so it's very usual to have a queue even as late as 10pm.
The restaurant is located right next to a not-very-safe crossing in the small village of Olhos de Água, Albufeira. You will recognise immediately its rough-but-authentic entrance: the classic awning with its name, a neon with its name again in case you missed it, and various welcoming outdoor areas you will be tempted to explore.
You need a car to get to the restaurant, which means the car park in front of it is usually full. To find more car spaces cross the road in the direction of the dirt road and find more parking spaces on your left.
You might sit on the top area and witness the chef grilling delicious food in the charcoal barbeque; or downstairs next to the bar and a support kitchen. Everywhere, you'll find busy and very efficient employees, children playing around and Portuguese people in their natural habitat.
The menu features many Portuguese specialities from the regular starters, such as the typical Algarve carrots, shrimps with garlic and clams, fresh grilled fish — loads of it; many meat dishes and homemade desserts. Expect food that feels like cooked by a friendly Portuguese grandmother — basically hearty comfort food. Budget-wise it won't be the cheapest Portuguese restaurant you can find, but for around 70€, a couple can eat and drink, and leave satisfied.
Fried shrimps with garlic
Any fresh fish
Stake with pepper sauce
(+351) 289 502 668