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Vila Velha

Name of establishment

Vila Velha, Sagres

Style    

Quaint, if that doesn't sound like a back-handed compliment - a traditional western Algarve building mixes Portuguese and northern European touches inside to give a reassuringly familiar feel.

Ambience   

A warm welcome is assured from the Dutch owner-chef, the lovely Lia, and her all-female team, who speak five languages between them.

What to eat?

The food is an eclectic mix of Portuguese favourites with an international flavour - fresh, tasty, interesting, and arriving in huge portions.

Sample starters include scrambled egg with farinheira sausage, octopus salad, or stuffed quail with a muscatel and raisin sauce.

Mains include beef fillets in a wild mushroom sauce (seriously delicious), rabbit in wine and spices, and stone bass with garlic and coriander, plus a fish of the day.

Desserts to tempt you range from homemade vanilla ice cream with stewed wild berries to the house special - cinnamon parfait with baked apple.

What to drink?

A good selection of Portuguese wines, including several from the Algarve.

Why do you love it?

Unhurried, relaxing and indicative of the whole of the western Algarve - the perfect place to escape from the frantic pace of the rest of the world.

When to go?

Any evening - the restaurant has A/C in summer and a log fire in winter.

Insider knowledge

Far from paying lip service to non-meat eaters, the menu has no less than seven vegetarian options, including inventive dishes using rice, noodles and pasta.

Size

50 seats inside, plus a covered terrace that seats a further 20.

Location

Rua Patrao Antonio Faustino - it's hard to get lost in such a small place as Sagres/ Baleeira. The restaurant is walking distance from either the Memmo Baleeira Hotel or the Pousada.

Cost

Starters from €4-€11.75

Mains from €13-€24

Desserts from €4.75-€7

You'll get a good bottle of wine in the €12-€20 range, and of course can go upwards from there.

Opening times
    
Open for dinner every evening except Monday from 18.30-22.00 (22.30 from 15 July-15 September).

Closed for holidays: December & January


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