Bonjardim for Benjamin

August 31, 2012

And so the honeymoon continues. We moved from Istanbul, Turkey to Lisbon, Portugal. Otherwise known as Ben’s motherland. Well, that’s what he claims anyway – Ben is 1/8th Portuguese. Really he just likes Piri Piri Chicken, let’s be real.

So what did I plan the day we arrived in hot, hilly, happening Lisbon? A visit to the spot for classic roast chicken. Piri piri sauce was obligatory. I’m a good wife.


It was a late lunch by the time we took our outdoor seats at Bonjardim, and so the gigantic plate of chicken and chips (served to us by a rather cheeky waiter) went down a real treat. The chicken was wonderfully tender, with a lovely crisp skin. These guys certainly know how to cook a bird. Their chips were plainly perfect – the ones pulled from under where the chicken was nesting were illegally delicious, after soaking up all the hot, juicy, seasoned goodness. Oh man.

Our chilled bottle of wine also went down a real treat *enter strolling around the city in a sun-dazed, late afternoon, wine-kissed haze*.

Salad, for good measure.

The piri piri sauce was essentially a spiced oil. It was hot. Hot as though a fire was storming from somewhere very deep inside you – albeit a tasty, seasoned fire, which was very welcomed on roasted chicken meat. It was fabulous. We dipped and applied to our chicken as desired. And we desired a lot of piri piri.

Ben charmed his way to the back of the restaurant to check out the rotisserie. Clearly he felt at home.

Our piri piri experience was a very good predictor for the perfect three days we spent in Portugal. In essence, relaxed fabulousness.
It was a brief visit, but we fell hard and fast for this spectacular city. I look forward to sharing all the wonderful sights and scrumptious bites we encountered over the next few posts.
Lisbon. It’s where it’s at.


Heidi xo

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  • Daisy@Nevertoosweet August 31, 2012 at 12:19 pm

    Hahhhaa Piri Piri Chicken YUM 🙂 i would love to go and eat the authentic ones and not just from Nandos hehe

  • Lisa @ Blithe Moments August 31, 2012 at 12:50 pm

    I watched an episode of Cheese Slices about Portugal (on an unrelated note, isn't it the best show? Cheese and Travel, love it) and have been wanting to go ever since. That chicken looks amazing.

  • The InTolerant Chef August 31, 2012 at 6:49 pm

    So glad Ben got his behind-the-scenes-tour 🙂 That chicken sounds awesome- bring on the fire!

  • Not Quite Nigella August 31, 2012 at 8:52 pm

    Hehe perhaps they could tell that he was part Portuguese!? 😉 Or was that part of how he charmed them?

  • Jac August 31, 2012 at 9:59 pm

    Looks delicious and I love the first picture of the restaurant..

  • Heidi September 1, 2012 at 10:06 am

    Daisy – omg so much better than Nandos! hehe.

    Lisa – I've never seen it!! will look it up now!

    InTolerant Chef – oh yeah 🙂

    Lorraine – Ben and his chicken…I have no idea what he did but it worked 😉

    Jac – thank you 🙂

    Heidi xo

  • ChopinandMysaucepan September 3, 2012 at 1:14 pm

    Dear Heidi,

    Ben is a charmer, piri-piri chicken or otherwise. Definitely my favourite too especially with a nice cold beer.

  • Leah September 3, 2012 at 2:06 pm

    Looks amazing Heidi. Gotta love chicken juice soaked chips nom nom nom

  • Heidi September 3, 2012 at 2:43 pm

    Chopinand Mysaucepan – amen 😉

    Leah – oh yeah. & thanks!

    Heidi xo

  • Ashley September 3, 2012 at 10:19 pm

    I'm just catching up on all your adventures and I find myself sighing and smiling with each post. I think I mentioned it before, I've never really thought of visiting Istanbul, but it just looks so lovely!

    Also, who doesn't love illegally delicious chips? Licking my lips! 🙂

  • Carol Mourao April 2, 2015 at 8:56 am

    Hi, Heidi!
    I live in Lisbon and another day I was complaining to my husband about the poor choices of restaurant we have in here (trust me: stay here for 5 days is great. Everyday we ran out options). And then I decided to search the web about foreign people who came to visit Lisbon and, of course, share the gastronomic experience they had here.
    So, I found your trip journal! Yeaahhh!
    And after read it, I was wondering if you picked up those places to eat randomly, or if you’ve got from somewhere/one travel tips.
    Btw, you should come here to try Santini ice cream (it’s very tradicional). And we have now a new Mercado da Ribeira. Last summer, a magazine sponsored a new food open space experience. You should check it out. It’s very very great!
    And I loved the pictures you posted! xoxo

    • Heidi April 2, 2015 at 10:04 am

      Hi Carol! Ooooh living in Lisbon, wow! I totally used trip advisor for restaurant recommendations. A few blogs too maybe….but really trip advisor & lonely planet. Then we just stumbled across some as ones recommended were closed. Most were casual seafood places but TASCA DA ESQUINA was a special one I searched out. Thanks for the ice-cream tip! I hope I am back one day, we loved Lisbon & that market sounds incredible. Thanks for the love, Carol 🙂 Good luck finding places x