Lisbon's dining scene has evolved dramatically in recent years to include any number of high-end dining opportunities, but amid the international fare, Michelin-starred restaurants, and molecular gastronomy, the city's simplest and most traditional restaurants still do a roaring trade. Meals generally include three courses, a drink, and coffee. Many restaurants have an ementa turistica (tourist
menu), a set-price meal, most often served at lunchtime. Note that you'll be charged a couple of euros if you eat any of the couvert items—typically appetizers such as bread and butter, olives, and the like—that are brought to your table without being ordered.
Lisbon's restaurants usually serve lunch from noon or 12:30 until 3 and dinner from 7:30 until 11; many establishments are closed Sunday or Monday. Inexpensive restaurants typically don't accept reservations. In the traditional cervejarias (beer-hall restaurants), which frequently have huge dining rooms, you'll probably have to wait for a table, but usually not more than 10 minutes. In the Bairro Alto, many of the reasonably priced tascas (taverns) are on the small side: if you can't grab a table, you're probably better off moving on to the next place. Throughout Lisbon, dress for meals is usually casual, but exceptions are noted below.