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“Generally Good, BUT” 3 of 5 stars
Review of Solar dos Nunes

Solar dos Nunes
R. dos Lusiadas, Lisbon 1300-372, Portugal
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Ranked #293 of 2,538 Restaurants in Lisbon
Certificate of Excellence 2014
Price range: $0 - $146
Dining options: Delivery, Late Night, Reservations
Restaurant details
Dining options: Delivery, Late Night, Reservations
Stamford, CT
16 reviews 16 reviews
5 restaurant reviews
Reviews in 11 cities Reviews in 11 cities
18 helpful votes 18 helpful votes
“Generally Good, BUT”
3 of 5 stars Reviewed December 9, 2011

I have eaten at Solar dos Niunes at least a dozen times over the course of about 8 years. It took me awhile to learn their game, and quite a game it is! The restaurant is very small and cramped, but at the same time it is attractive and homey. The owner and waiters knew us well and always reserved our favorite table on the upper level so we were less cramped and had a good view of the whole place. Reservations are a must. Very little English is spoken, so have your hotel call. There's an English menu, but it's not complete. (There are numerous offerings that are not on the English menu.)

One thing to be aware of is that they place ALL of the items on the appetizer (tapas) menu on the table before the customers arrive. Beware! touch it, and you pay for it. Anything you don't want, you MUST tell the waiter to take it off the table. Otherwise, you'll be charged. Several times, I made the mistake of just diving in and finishing off everything without thinking. It's all delicious, but it gets bloody expensive.

The food is, for the most part, excellent. The chef always came out to greet us as soon as we were seated - he knew us from having seen us so often. I was very seldom disappointed, and if I said anything it was immediately taken care of. Solar dos Nunes became our must-visit place on every trip, and I felt like a traitor if we didn't go there at least once every time we were in Lisboa.

That all ended after a disaster that I thought would kill me. On my last visit, my partner insisted on having dessert. I was so full that I really didn't feel like stuffing myself any more than I already had, but I succumbed to the orange cake (a simple, moist, tasty cake with an orange sauce.) It tasted fine, but apparently the sauce was made with uncooked or undercooked eggs that were harboring the dreaded salmonella. The effects started before we even got back to our hotel. By the time I got to the room, I knew I was in serious trouble. I had a flight out the next day around noon, and by that time I was debating whether to go to the airport or the hospital. Without going into the gory details, I'll just say it was a stroke of extremely good luck that I packed clean underwear in my carry-on bag. The flight was one I'll never, ever forget. I was in first class and was assigned my very own lavatory where I spent nearly the whole flight.

I gave Solar dos Nunes 3 stars only because of the many excellent meals I had there over the years. However, I will never be able to get over the memory of the worst case of food poisoning I could ever imagine. It took about 4 days for me to fully recover, and it's not something I ever want to go through again.

  • Visited January 2011
    • 2 of 5 stars Value
    • 3 of 5 stars Atmosphere
    • 4 of 5 stars Service
    • 3 of 5 stars Food
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169 reviews from our community

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Date | Rating
  • Danish first
  • English first
  • French first
  • German first
  • Italian first
  • Japanese first
  • Portuguese first
  • Russian first
  • Spanish first
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  • Any
English first
Barcelona, Spain
Top Contributor
89 reviews 89 reviews
67 restaurant reviews
Reviews in 18 cities Reviews in 18 cities
54 helpful votes 54 helpful votes
“Sadly a total rip-off”
2 of 5 stars Reviewed December 6, 2011

This place was recommended on so many different sites, as well as by the locals, that we thought we couldn't go wrong. While the food was very tasty, it left us with a bitter taste in our mouths when the bill for a 2-course lunch for two came in at almost 80 euros!
If you travel around the Mediterranean, you quickly learn that the "free" starters that are brought to your table are rarely free. However, you don't expect a few plates of cheese, cold cuts and bread in a "rustic", local restaurant to put you back more than €30!
The waiter also got quite snotty with us when we only tipped him €1.50 - hardly surprising after having just seen our bill! Tasty food, nothing outstanding and definitely won't go be going back.

Visited December 2011
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This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Lisbon, Portugal
Senior Contributor
26 reviews 26 reviews
11 restaurant reviews
Reviews in 4 cities Reviews in 4 cities
25 helpful votes 25 helpful votes
“great food”
5 of 5 stars Reviewed November 20, 2011

Excellent food but not cheap. It's a great place to eat good portuguese food.

Visited December 2010
Was this review helpful? Yes 7
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
London, United Kingdom
4 reviews 4 reviews
Reviews in 2 cities Reviews in 2 cities
6 helpful votes 6 helpful votes
“Not all we had hoped for at all”
3 of 5 stars Reviewed August 29, 2011

We were recommended this restaurant by a local, we checked out the website before we went along and thought it looked up-market and traditional - exactly what we were hoping for as it was our last night in Lisbon.
We reserved a table as it was a Saturday. However, this was not necessary as it was virtually empty all night!
On arrival, we were shown to a table which has a basket of bread, two plates of ham, two plates of cheese, olives and crackers! All far to much for two people - so we asked for half of it to be removed but were charged at the end of the meal a lot for what we kept.

We were asked if we were ready to order about 4 times and felt that, despite them clearly not being all that busy, we were being rushed.

We decided on Cataplana - a traditional fish stew, this was very tasty and plenty of it too -very happy with that. Wine was also nice, but we had to request a wine list as we were not shown one on arrival.

Again we felt very rushed throughout the meal as our waiter was hovering over us and constantly topping up our wine and water glasses which made conversation / romantic chat (!) difficult.
We chose to share a dessert which was ok - clearly pre-brought and not homemade or very traditional, perhaps a mistake to order it but did go against the restaurants websites comments on being of quality.

When we decided not to have a coffee the bill was delivered to our table where the waiter again hovered until it was paid.

It was all a little odd to be honest - no warm welcome, no relaxed easy atmosphere, the food was good but rushed and the waiter was just plain peculiar!

We went to some far better restaurants in the area and, indeed, in Lisbon.

  • Visited August 2011
    • 3 of 5 stars Value
    • 1 of 5 stars Atmosphere
    • 2 of 5 stars Service
    • 3 of 5 stars Food
Was this review helpful? Yes 1
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Top Contributor
61 reviews 61 reviews
24 restaurant reviews
Reviews in 42 cities Reviews in 42 cities
49 helpful votes 49 helpful votes
“Great if you stay at Pestana Palace”
4 of 5 stars Reviewed July 30, 2011

This relatively up-scale restaurant is about a 10 minute stroll from the Pestana Palace. We went on a Friday night and it was busy but we got a table right away. Our waiter was very efficient and helpful. Be careful about the food that is brought to your table before you order. If you touch it you pay and it can be as much as the meal itself. Our waiter recommended the fish soup for two. It contained a generous amount of fish and prawns and pasta. It was brought to the table in a heated pot and was still at a rolling boil. There was enough for three bowls each if we could have eaten that much. Meal for two: 23 Euros, with starters (bread and cheese) and a litre of wine the total bill was 48 Euros. There was no smoking.

  • Visited July 2011
    • 3 of 5 stars Value
    • 5 of 5 stars Atmosphere
    • 4 of 5 stars Service
    • 4 of 5 stars Food
Was this review helpful? Yes 8
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.

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