The Wild Food At Cervejaria Ramiro In Lisbon! Scarlett Shrimp! “Crab Head” Crab + A Steak Sandwich Dessert!

Welcome To Lisbon!

My wife Alex and I spent New Year’s in Lisbon and I plan to share many of our adventures with you!

Portugal’s largest city is also one of Europe’s oldest and most diverse cities. Here is how the city is described on wikipedia:

“Lisbon is Portugal’s hilly, coastal capital city. From imposing São Jorge Castle, the view encompasses the old city’s pastel-colored buildings, Tagus Estuary and Ponte 25 de Abril suspension bridge.”

Yes, their bridge evokes the iconic Golden Gate Bridge, and crosses over the Tagus river, which is the longest river on the Iberian Peninsula. 

One of the most fascinating aspects of Lisbon are the incredible, decorative ceramic tiles that are found on the streets everywhere in town:

Some of them appear as waves on the sidealk:

And classic decorative tiles of all colors are on all of the older buildings in the city as well!

The city has many unique aspects to it, like their famous “Tram 28”, which runs across the city and up one of the “7 hills” of Lisbon:

Many more stories about Lisbon to come, but I’m hungry, so let’s kick it off with what the city is legendary for: its cuisine!

Welcome To The Legendary Cervejaria Ramiro!

This iconic seafood restaurant serves shellfish – and shellfish only! Crab, Clams, Shrimp and more is what they are known for…and let me get this out of the way: it is ALWAYS packed, and even with a reservation you may have to wait – because no matter how fast they serve you – and they do serve the food fast – it is a multi-course meal – ALL SHELLFISH!

My wife Alex and I got to the restaurant at precisely 6p, and were seated within minutes…then our Waiter came over and we told him what we heard we needed to eat and he then told what we MUST have – and the food – and wine began!

We ONLY drink local wine when we travel – and we found Portugal’s wine to be delicious: with a strong mineralogy and depth of flavor!

Sizzling Shrimp With Garlic!

It began with these shrimp, which arrived sizzling in garlic and olive oil…just what we wanted to hear….listen:

Now, this was just our first dish, but they also brought us a heaping plate of grilled bread slathered in butter – but our Server warned us not to get carried away with it in order to save room for the crustaceans to come!

Of course, this bread was perfect to dredge in the garlic oil in the pan, but we really made use of it when we got the dish we had to have: crab served in its own head!

Yes, This Is “Crab Head” Crab!

Well, this was heaven: crab cooked in its own juices and then served inside the head…absolutely delicious – especially when eaten with that crusty bread!

Our Waiter was very interested in how we were enjoying the dish – watch:

The bread got some use again as a bowl of clams steamed in garlic and fish broth arrived – the clams were dredged with the bread and were so so good:

Next up, we told our Waiter that our friend told us about one specific dish we HAD to try – and he cut us off quickly and said:


Yes, he knew exactly what it was – and since I grew up in the Pacific Northwest, where barnacles formed on the bottom of boats – I was cautiously curious!

Our close friend Nicole told us to order them and we are so glad we did!

So how exactly do you get the meat out the barnacle?

Here goes:

They were chewy little bursts of the sea!

Next up: more local Shrimp, split and grilled – with a wedge lemon to use as well…deliciously fresh and yes, I caught one of them eyeing me as I ate:

Next up: yet another variety of Shrimp, these were poached and served at room temperature:

These were more like Langoustines, and yes, there was succulent meat in the long appendages…and finally, it was time for the main course – and let me just say this now:


Cervejaria Ramiro’s Incredible “Scarlett Shrimp” Dish!

The entire meal built to this plate of delicious culinary artistry, which began with a meticulous preparation by our Waiter:

By the way, he delivered the massive, dark ruby red Shrimp earlier int he meal and we were told this:

“Don’t touch this dish. In fact, don’t look at them until I get back!”

We laughed but he was serious – so we ignored them until, with great flourish, our Waiter returned and the carving of the “Scarlett Shrimp” began:

Yes, he split the shrimp and formed a heart, then sliced off the head and spooned out the interior juices onto the dish!

Stunningly much so that Alex had to get a shot with our Server to capture it forever!

Served heart-shaped with the interior of the head drizzled over it and more inside to use as well…unbelievably delicious and the perfect show stopper to end the meal – look at our table!

This was the perfect meal with the perfect ending – or was it?

Time For Dessert – A Steak Sandwich!

That’s true: Cervejaria Ramiro proudly serves a steak sandwich as a dessert – and it’s delicious!

The bread was soft, the steak beautifully cooked and well seasoned – a traditional way for every meal here to end – but we never wanted it to!

What a meal – and what a great restaurant! Our Waiter was phenomenal, proudly telling us he’d worked there for more than a decade and loved every night!

This is a MUST STOP on every trip to this great city!

We were here to celebrate my birthday on New Years Eve, and Alex always does meticulous research, so get ready for another adventure she uncovered here:

This colorful palace is still to come, along with more culinary adventures as well…that seems to be something we always manage to find:

Yes, we had an amazing – and flaming – meal when we visited Sardinia – click here to see what we ate!

We also visited Sicily last summer – and stayed in the hotel used in the great HBO series “The White Lotus”:

Sicily was magical, and so was the hotel – click here for a tour of the hotel and the “White Lotus” locations!

Of course, we ate Sicilian specialties and drank Sicilian wine as well:

Here is one of the great wineries, and the rice we got from them for a “Cassatedde!”

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Leave me a comment and I you liked this story, feel free to share on social media – thank you!

Categories: cookbooks, Exotic Travel, Food, food blog, Food Review, Memoirs, Recipes, Restaurants, Travel, Travel Adventures, Travel Memoir, Wacky Food, wine

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14 replies

  1. When in Rome (or Lisbon), absolutely! One of my parents is leaving for Portugal tomorrow on business, and she’s taking her daughter (in my class). How exciting. I hope it is Lisbon.

    Liked by 1 person

  2. how amazing. I absolutely love, love shellfish and that restaurant, wow! the courses and the steak dessert! happy belated birthday, John, looks like you celebrated in style –

    Liked by 1 person

  3. Oh wow! What a beautiful city! I love shrimp and every dish looks fantastic! And who knew you could eat barnacles?

    Liked by 1 person

  4. I have never been to Lison, and your meal makes me want to go and replicate your wonderful dining experience!
    I often buy a Portuguese red wine here. It is call Dao, and is heavy and flavoursome. And of course, I enjoy a glass of Port at times too!*1ewhwb4*_up*MQ..*_ga*MTg0NzQ0OTUxNy4xNjczNDU1MzI0*_ga_B0T2LRE97B*MTY3MzQ1NTMyNC4xLjAuMTY3MzQ1NTMyNC4wLjAuMA..#
    Best wishes, Pete.

    Liked by 1 person

    • Pete, Dao is one of their best…two separate people said to us, in completely different circumstances: “anyone who buys a five euro bottle of wine in a store is showing off, because you can get great wine for 3!” The city is a bargain in so many ways and so nice!

      Liked by 1 person


  1. The Wild Food At Cervejaria Ramiro In Lisbon! Scarlett Shrimp! “Crab Head” Crab + A Steak Sandwich Dessert! — johnrieber – Bite! Eat! Repeat!
  2. Climbing Pena Palace High Above Lisbon! The Majesty Of Sintra Portugal! – johnrieber
  3. An “On The Edge” Meal At Lisbon’s Ponto Final! Classic Portugese Food Literally ON The Tagus River! – johnrieber
  4. Exploring Castelo Dos Mouros! Storming Portugal’s Moorish Castle High Above Sintra! – johnrieber

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