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Don Sebastião Restaurant, Portugal

Bill Nestor
Posted: June 29, 2009

(continued from page 1)

A visit to the cellar after dinner for port with queijo da serra, a cured, creamy sheep milk Serrinha Cheese from Portugal's Serra da Estrela mountains continued the parade of taste sensations. The cellar houses 14,000 bottles and 240 varieties of white, rose, and red. Tucked in the corner was a humidor with an assortment of brands. We selected Hoyo de Monterrey Epicure No. 2s from a cabinet and headed to the patio.

The dessert selection included morgados cookies made with local almonds, figs and eggs and almond cakes. I took great pleasure in these sweets with after dinner coffee, port and a strong local alcoholic spirit, the aguardente de medronho, distilled from butus berry fruit while enjoying slow burning Cubans on the patio adjacent to the street where people passed by arm in arm on evening strolls.

Lagos and the Algarve are heavily influenced by tourism but still retain many qualities of the country and people. There is an authentic taste of Portuguese culture and cuisine at resorts and quaint beach towns in hidden coves from Praia da Luz to Sagres and the mountain village of Monchique, each rich in lifestyle with warm and welcoming people.

Although the Algarve is one of best golf destinations in the world, with 36 courses in a 74 mile stretch, the region offers plenty for non-golfers as well, including miles of golden-sand beaches and beautiful walking nature trails, charming villages, seaside national parks, historic architecture, sailing, fishing and other water sports.

Algarve's proximity to and influence of the sea pervades much of life—climate, weather, agricultural, cuisine and customs. The sharing of food and wine is central to the culture. Restaurants are gathering places where people celebrate traditional local fare and the enjoyment of dining together, a ritual that's magnified exponentially by this geographic phenomenon that's repeated each and every night.

Don Sebastiao Restaurante
Rua 25 Abril 20/2 8600-763 Lagos, Portugal
Phone: 351-282-780-480

Bill Nestor writes about travel, golf and lifestyle from his home in Vermont.

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