If you’re lucky enough to find yourself stumbling around the Alfama between the right hours, and if you’re lucky enough to find the doors open to this teensy little establishment, you just might be lucky enough for the aged and wise Don Jorge to threaten you with the tiny blade of his wine opener, secretly pay your tab, then bound out onto the street while pumping his biceps at the world and announcing “amanha!” before you ever know what hit you.
Eder (whom I believe speaks English) and the rest of the staff are cordial and ready with a joke and a smile. Though the menus offer food and all manner of tipple at rock bottom prices, I’ve only ever stopped in for a medronho (arbutus berry brandy), some fresh squeezed Algarve orange juice, and the occasional cafezinho. You’ll notice the walls are adorned with all manner of Portuguese liquor, in addition to many different brands of the traditional ginja (cherry liquor) the place is named for. Even if, like me, you stop only for a single fortifying shot of medronho before heading to the next Fado stop, you’ll grow an affection for this little place quickly.
Ginja d’Alfama, Rua São Pedro 12, 1100-172, Lisbon, Portugal