Algarve Foodies Guide
Algarve Foodies Guide
The short answer: Yes.
We give you 5 strong reasons to unveil its culture and gastronomy and discover Algarve’s food authenticity.
Simple traditional dishes (cataplana, milhos or arjamolho), snacks and tapas (barnacles, oysters or octopus salad), a glass of wine or liquor (melosa) or even the most delicious dessert made of almonds, honey or figs (doce fino or fig cheese). They all have history to tell and we all have something to learn from it.
When in the Algarve, Portugal, you will not only soak up the sun and warm weather but you will also discover the reason why the world’s cuisine was deeply influenced by this small country.
Here are just five good reasons to discover the Algarve:
1 The Portuguese sailors departed from Lagos, Algarve, in the 15th century and created the most important maritime trade routes across continents at the time. The renowned Japanese tempura or the use of chili in the Indian cuisine are some of the proofs of this influence.
2 Within just a few kilometers you can discover the best products from the mountains, the freshest fish and seafood from the coast or unveil the local wine or olive oil production.
3 In Portugal, eating traditional food, tapas and drinking a glass of wine is almost a national sport. You can easily spend 2 to 3 hours of your day chatting and tasting these delicacies surrounded by friends and family.
4 Mediterranean Diet, the base of the Portuguese cuisine, is an Intangible Cultural Heritage by UNESCO, and considered by many one of the healthiest ways of eating.
5 From that traditional “hidden gem” to the Michelin-starred fine dining scene, the Algarve has it all. Combine that with white-sanded beaches or relaxing walks by the cliffs, cultural tours on the cobbled stone city centers or fitness retreats, water and motorsports or just a good night out.
Algarve is the perfect blend of culture, relax, nature and sports all set in a paradise for foodies.
Charming streets, a dramatic coastline and dozens of good excuses to live the authentic Portuguese food experience to the fullest. Would this be enough to set the base in Lagos?
The answer might come after checking some of our suggestions to explore the Western Algarve.
Day 1 – Lagos city discovery
Wake up early in the morning and inspire yourself with a sunrise scenic walk through the Ponta da Piedade trails overlooking the Atlantic Ocean.
Try a different perspective and get on board - a boat or a kayak - for a tour to the Ponta da Piedade sea caves.
After the tour, head to the Local Market to check the freshest fishes, seafood, fruits and vegetables – local oysters, barnacles, oranges and sweet potatoes are a must try. Once there, be curious and ask the locals for the best traditional cooking recipes, not only you will get a hands-on approach to the Portuguese cuisine as well as you might also learn some Portuguese words and expressions.
Buy some “Dom Rodrigo”, “Doce Fino” or “Fig Cheese” (famous sweets made from egg yolks, almond and fig and almond, respectively) to refill the energy levels for the rest of the morning. Wander through the city center streets and unveil the local shops, the historical buildings, museums and let the food scents guide you to the perfect place to lunch.
Take the rest of the afternoon to tour around the local wineries and get to know the biological wines, the different local types of grapes and the region’s terroir. End the day with a sunset jeep safari to the St. Vincent’s Cape Lighthouse that ends with a tasting of local tapas and a good glass of wine by the sea.
Day 2 – Portimão and Monchique discovery
The day starts early in the morning, after a rejuvenating breakfast, and the plan is to head east. The first stop will be Ria de Alvor Natural Reserve, home to one of the biggest Flamingo’s colony in Portugal. Getting to know the ancient techniques of oyster, razor clam and cockle picking is the main purpose.
The Portimão Museum will be the next stop. This old canned fish factory building converted into a museum allows you to go back in time and explore the deep connection of food and local traditions, as well as the history and production process of the city’s canned fish industry.
The uplands of Monchique rising on the horizon deserve to be discovered. The cured meats, vegetables, honey and – of course – the famous medronho (strawberry tree) are part of this journey.
A visit to Caldas de Monchique will unveil the benefits of the mountain’s waters before a stop for lunch in one of the many typical restaurants available on the way up. The soul food and the “farm to table” concept are easy to find on every corner. After a comforting meal a visit to the distilleries of medronho is the right thing to do before heading to Foia. Once there, soak up the magic atmosphere and the breathtaking views of the highest point of the Algarve before descending again to the village of Monchique. Do not leave without filling up a big shopping bag with some cured ham, blood sausages, medronho or bolo de tacho.
Day 3 – Relax and indulge by the pool
To soak up the rich history of the Algarve or the influence of Portuguese maritime discoveries in today’s international cuisine one must find the perfect place to stay.
Cascade Wellness & Lifestyle Resort might just be the perfect choice. The cliff top 5-start resort facing the Atlantic Ocean inspires itself on the epic journey of the Portuguese sailors to take its guests across 4 continents. If sophisticated themed rooms of African, Asian, South American and European decoration, large pools and state-of-the-art sports facilities are something to consider, the restaurants selection opens the way to a “one place fits all” type of culinary experience.
With a fine dining restaurant serving a local approach to the international cuisine, an international restaurant with themed buffets from each continent and a typical Portuguese gastropub serving the highlights of the national and regional gastronomy, Cascade Resort allows you to keep exploring and live different types of food experiences in one place.
Tasting a glass of wine on the bar’s terrace, relaxing by the pool, visiting the local market with the Chef, learning how to cook a cataplana or just unwinding with a spa ritual, the discovery journey never ends in this little piece of heaven.
And if you need some extra motivation to encourage you to head to Lagos and give yourself over to the pleasures of this discovery, then we have a little secret to share with you.
We have put together a package of benefits and exclusive offers for stays between the 1st and the 29th of September so that there’s no reason to hesitate about saying yes to the southern Portugal’s food discovery.
– Accommodation in a room/suite with balcony or terrace + Breakfast Buffet at the Mundi Restaurant – special rates for direct bookings with the hotel
– Cascade Selection Tisane on arrival
– VIP Wellness Gift in your room on arrival
– Portuguese Wine Pairing offer with every 6-course Chef’s Menu at Senses Restaurant;
– Tasting of 3 Artisanal Beers per dinner, per person, at The Gastropub (snacks and couverts excluded from this promotion);
– Portuguese Tapas Selection available every day at The Gastropub;
– Catch of The Day available at The Gastropub with the freshest fishes and seafood from the coast;
Your Energy Boost
– 10€ discount on personal training sessions (except physiotherapy) in the Cascade Gym by ANX Club 100 *;
– 5€ discount on all group classes in the Cascade Gym by ANX Club 100’s weekly programme (yoga, pilates, zumba, functional training and more)**;
– One free walking map and snack pack (water, fruit and Cascade energy bar) per person for bookings made directly with the hotel
– Activities such as bicycle outings, walks, bootcamps, stand-up paddle and group programmes are also available. Details available on request.
* Must be booked 48 hours in advance so that the session can be adapted to your current level of fitness and the goals to be achieved. Subject to availability.
** Must be booked 48 hours in advance. Subject to availability.
Your relax moment
– Free entry to the sauna, Turkish bath, jacuzzi and heated outdoor pool;
– 15% discount on a selection of treatments and massages during your stay;
If you want to have an even more personalized experience and enjoy the best of the region’s history and natural beauty, then let our Guest Services team give you a few suggestions.
– Kayak outings to the caves at Ponta da Piedade
– Performance-optimizing classes for golfers
– Jeep safaris in the Monchique Mountains and along the Vicentine Coast
– Diving courses
Terms & Conditions:
– Offer valid for stays from 01 to 29 September 2019.
- Valid for bookings made 48 hours in advance and subject to availability.
- Valid for new bookings only and made directly on the website or phone with our reservations department.
– Credit card will be requested to guarantee your booking.
– Stay must be paid in full upon reservation.
The Cascade Wellness & Lifestyle Resort reserves the right to cancel or amend this offer at any time and without notice.