There is an alternative side to Lisbon, but you certainly won’t find it in your guidebook. In Mouraria, an old local neighbourhood, a small number of ‘illegal’ Chinese restaurants have started to appear close to the Martim Moniz metro station. Known as clandestinos by the locals, these spots are essentially in someone’s home, where the food comes straight from their kitchen and the bathroom is the same as the one used by the family who lives there. Some are literally in the family’s living room and you might have to arrange yourself around someone’s grandma watching tv in the corner and the old guys playing board games, although some owners have converted their apartment to have a more restaurant like set-up. Those not in the know would walk straight past these spots, as the only way to distinguish them from the surrounding flats is by a red Chinese lantern that hangs in the window, or if you’re lucky enough to have a tip given to you by a local. So take a deep breath, ring the doorbell and prepare to try truly authentic Chinese food. It might sound strange, but these eateries have become part of the fabric of local life in this area, and it’s not an experience you’ll get anywhere else. You’ll find two of these secret spots at 59 Rua do Benformosso, but also in Rua do Terreirinho and Beco da Oliveira.