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Sa Pessoa

Henrique Sá Pessoa


HENRIQUE SA PESSOA was born in 1976 in Oeiras and discovered his love for cooking while on an exchange programme in the USA, where his secret dream was to become a basketball player. Until 1999, he lived in London and worked at the Park Lane Hotel. He then moved to Sydney, Australia, to work at the Sheraton on the Park during the 2000 Olympics. Two years later, he returned to Portugal, and, over the following years, he worked variously at the Lapa Palace in Lisbon, Restaurant Syrup in Cascais, La Villa in Estoril and the Bairro Alto Hotel in Lisbon.

In 2005, he was named ‘Best Chef of the Year’ in the most prestigious cooking contest in Portugal and, in 2007, he was awarded the Horexpo Cup. That same year marked the publication of his first book, Entre Pratos (Among Dishes), which brought together all of the recipes from the first series of his television show of the same name, aired on RTP2. A second book followed a year later, and he also won the Chef of the Year Award from the Academy of Portuguese Gastronomy. To date, Chef Sá Pessoa has 7 books to his name.

In February 2009, he opened his first restaurant, Alma, which won Wine magazine’s Restaurant of the Year award. In 2013, he opened in partnership Cais da Pedra, also in Lisbon. November 2015 Alma relocated to the most noble and historical part of the city, Chiado. Within the first year of opening, Alma was awarded by the red guide with a *1 Michelin Star.

Pessoa’s current television show, Manual de Instruçoes, is the new tv project after  Secret Ingredient, that aired for five seasons, and has long proved to be a real success, showing every Saturday and providing viewers with tips and tricks for the kitchen. He has also starred in Chef’s Academy on RTP1, one of Portugal´s most viewed TV channels.

More about Henrique Sá Pessoa

What is your ultimate comfort food?Roast Chicken (Crispy skin and spicy)If you weren't a chef, what would you be?In my dreams an NBA basketball playerWhat three things are always in your pantry?Olive Oil, sea salt and gingerIf you could cook with anyone in the world, who would it be?Marco Pierre White