Classy dining in a ’70s ski chalet in the middle of Lisbon
Update April 2022: Pabe was temporarily”closed – and now it’s back, winning 4 Forks (like 3 Michelin stars, but with forks, get it?) from the local authorities
Pabe looks like a swiss ski lodge from the outside, and doesn’t disappoint once you get in, with huge wooden rafters, comfy booths, a bar with actual bar stools… You’d think this place was the latest overpriced gin bar by the latest minor celebrity chef in town, but no, this is the real deal, a stalwart of Portuguese dining circa 1970s, when people and cars were more groovy and waiters still wore three-piece suits, smoked and had cocktails for breakfast.
Atlas came here, back in the days, for two things and two things only: escargots and steak tartare. They had both, and then some, a mix of French brasserie food and the more inventive Portuguese dishes. The escargots, despite being sold as á Parisienne, were cooked in olive oil, but the steak tartare was a major production involving about two dozen ingredients (including both madeira AND cognac), all whipped together by one of the head waiters with just the right amount of panache and choice (picante? muito picante? bom). The dessert cheese platter is especially good. The service is impeccable yet warm and the staff look and sound like they’re part of the interior design.