There are many mercados in Lisbon as there are throughout Portugal.
Mercados are markets, either open-air or in large, spacious buildings, where farmers come to sell their produce. There are also fish stalls, cheese booths, usually at least one butcher, fresh catches of fish, an area that sells bread and there are always fresh flowers, herbs and small plants. And of course, there is always at least one café and a stall that sells Portuguese wines.
Mercados are similar to the farmers markets in the US but usually much larger. I am most familiar with the one in Portland, Oregon on the university grounds and I would say a typical municipal mercado covers the same area but with many more stalls, booths and tables.
When living in Cascais, I enjoyed going to the Mercado de Vila on Saturdays and after shopping, meeting friends for a café in the market. Previously I have written about the Cascais mercado link and you can find information about those visits here and here.
Recently I had the great pleasure of meeting a photographer who just landed in Portugal with her husband to make this country their home. Her name is Julien McRoberts and you can find her online here and on Instagram @julienmcroberts.
We decided to collaborate on chosen posts, Julien with her amazing photos and me, as always, providing the text.
The mercado we are featuring this week is the Mercado 31 de Janeiro (January 31 market) in the neighborhood of Saldanha.
There were a few items of particular interest.
First the shop of herbs and spices.
What was amazing about this shop was the extensive variety of spices and teas. Julien and I both enjoy cooking so discovering this shop was a great find for us.
You will probably find any spice you need here.
The stall below has dried tomatoes, which for me was a great find, and varieties of chilis, which made Julien very happy.
This mercado is an interesting place to visit if you’re in the neighborhood or want specialty items. If you want to explore more of the area, a walk toward El Corte Ingles can give you sense of the surrounding community.