Portugal Weekend
Bailliage of Algarve
Vila Nova de Cacela, February 15-16, 2019
Celebrating the new - Catching up with the old
" a new gastronomic experience for all present "

Members and guests met at Monte Rei, the 5-star golf resort, on the Friday evening for a gourmet dinner in the resort’s elegant “Vistas” Restaurant.

It was an opportunity to welcome the new Bailli of Algarve, Roy Clevenholm, and to appreciate Dr Jean Ferran’s years of service. Jean is happily continuing in the overseeing function of Bailli Provincial of South of the Tagus as well as being Chargé de Missions for the National Bailliage.

Our host was Officier Maître Hôtelier Salvador Lucena, who is CEO of the resort and a good friend. The innovative menu themed “Fauna and Flora”, inspired by nature and created by Chef Rui Silvestre, was much enjoyed.

Although new in the “Vistas” and Monte Rei surroundings Rui is an old friend of many members who have followed his career particularly at Restaurant Bon Bon where he obtained a Michelin star.

The journey through the menu consisted of exciting combinations of local delicacies with wild herbs and foraged seaweeds from the Atlantic shore. The accompanying wines were selected and explained with many interesting details by the restaurant’s sommelier Nuno Pires.

The second part of this two-day event was lunch in the tiny village of Laranjas at the famous small restaurant “Cantarinha do Guardiana”.

After a leisurely drive from Monte Rei through the beautiful Algarve countryside passing picturesque dams, we arrived at the Cantarinha. The new and old theme was in evidence as the main course was lamprey considered a delicacy since antiquity. It was a new gastronomic experience for all present!

Like salmon, lampreys migrate from their natural sea habitat upriver to breed in February/March. It is a seasonal delicacy in Portugal and also well known in France, England and Finland.

The oldest Portuguese cookery book, supposedly written by Infanta D. Maria in the 16th century, gives instructions how to cook lampreys. The wine chosen to accompany the lamprey and eel dishes was a red Vinho Verde, again a new experience for several of the group.

Every Bailliage of Algarve event generates funds for the Chaîne’s international foundation, the Association Caritative de la Chaîne des Rôtisseurs (ACCR), for both its international projects and the Gastronomy School in Portugal which helps youngsters in need by giving them formal culinary training.

Valerie Lantau
Vice-Chargée de Presse