Monday, May 16, 2016


If you haven't been to Portugalia Marketplace in nearby Fall River, MA (489 Bedford Street  508-617-9820) go soon, you won't regret it and you may love it. Portugalia is a feast to the soul (that covers eyes and mouth). For serious cooks of Portuguese cuisine it's the local (and not-so-local) go-to place for ingredients. For the basic food lover who is looking only for some olive oil it's a cultural blast of beauty and promise. Naturally, the food lover will leave with the olive oil and bread, and maybe some wine, cheese, chocolate-covered almonds, beautiful tins of sardines ....

Have lunch in the café - e.g., a grilled Portuguese tuna in oil with cheese. Pastries too. Prices are remarkably low for the sandwiches.

I'm not in the market for fifty pounds of salt cod, or giant quid, or octopus, but it's fun to look at it all. The long windowed "cod" room is very cool, figuratively and literally. Portugalia is an expansive airy warehouse-style shop which covers all things Portuguese from dishes to port (the cheese department covers much of Europe and some local U.S. too). This is an ideal place to buy components for a perfect antipasto platter.

There's a beer and wine section. Non-alcoholic Portuguese beer is available.
Cheapest wines near the floor, prices moving upward.

You're best bet for relatively peaceful shopping and easy parking is to go on a weekday. Weekends are busy, busy and the parking gets tight - you're in a commercial area and nearby street parking is limited. That said, it's fun to be there on Saturday, in the lively crowd, sampling cheeses and olive oils and buying way more than you need.

Hours are Monday - Saturday, 8:00 a.m. - 7:00 p.m. Sunday, 9:00 a.m. - 2:00 p.m.

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