O nosso guia para época alta

Apesar do Alentejo ser normalmente um paraíso solitário, existem determinadas alturas com picos de afluência que tornam as coisas um pouco mais complicadas, este guia procura enumerar algumas soluções práticas para aproveitar ao máximo os seus dias de descanso evitando alguns transtornos.

SUPERMERCADO

Porto Côvo tem dois pequenos minimercados, que possivelmente vão ter filas de espera em alturas de grande afluência, tente por isso fazer logo uma lista do que vai precisar durante a sua estadia e evitar idas múltiplas. É sempre uma boa ideia ter um vinho e alguns snacks, ou ingredientes para uma salada ou lanche na praia. O supermercado Tropicação tem uma excelente escolha de vinhos, mas por vezes, pode até ser mais simples comprar o que precisa antes de sair de casa para as suas férias. ( a nossa escolha, vinho biológico Quinta do Cardo, no supermercado Tropicação)

ENTREGA AQUI NA CABEÇA DA CABRA

+(351) 924 234 924

Joachim Dhollander, um jovem belga com o coração no local da Ribeira da Azenha,  próximo da Praia dos Aivados, começou a fazer jantares na sua horta, cozinhados com os produtos que ele próprio e outros agricultores locais cultivaram, este ano devido ao Coronavírus o Joachim não estará a servir os jantares na sua casa, mas proporciona um serviço de entrega por marcação com 24h de antecedência. A opção do polvo não está sempre diponível.

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RESTAURANTES

A oferta existente é muito boa, mas não há mãos a medir quando há picos de afluência, para evitar perder tempo, reserve a sua mesa, encomende para “take away” ou escolha restaurantes com esplanadas grandes (que podem sentar praticamente o mesmo número de pessoas, do que antes do Corona Vírus). Para dar uma ajuda extra na escolha, ficam aqui as cartas de alguns restaurantes:

ZÉ INÁCIO – fecha às quartas

+(351) 269 905 977

Um clássico de Porto Covo, tente telefonar antes das horas de pico do serviço, se encomendar o take away, a comida deverá ficar pronta em cerca de 20 ou 30 minutos. As doses dão praticamente para duas pessoas. Face ao profissionalismo desta equipa e porque as margens de lucro são tão reduzidas na comida em si, se escolher o take away, sugiro que compre também aqui as bebidas ou que os gratifique na altura do pagamento. (A nossa escolha, salada de polvo)

PIZZARIA BELA VITA

+(351) 269 905 115

É verdade que ninguém vem de férias para o Alentejo a sonhar em comer uma pizza, mas é um solução rápida, prática e a qualidade é boa. No link infra encontra a carta das pizzas e de bebidas:

http://www.labellavita.eu/PG%20Ementa.html

O TORREÂO

+(351) 269905163

Este restaurante sempre teve uma grande esplanada, estão por isso familiarizados com o serviço actual e não terá de esperar muito por mesa. A nossa escolha vai para os carapauzinhos com arroz de tomate num dia de pressa e a cataplana de marisco se estiver dispostos a esperar 45 minutos, a Cataplana dá para 3 ou 4 pessoas.

Arte e Sal

+(351) 269 869 125    – fecha às segundas  – instagram @arte_e_sal

Este restaurante funcionou com Take Away durante todo o período de quarentena, tendo agora alargado uma esplanada em frente à praia de Morgavel (São Torpes).

PRAIAS

Em dias de grande afluência, a Praia da Ilha do Pessegueiro parece estar um pouco esquecida dos roteiros turísticos, tem ainda Praia do Malhão que pela sua extensão  dificilmente fica com a lotação esgotada. A Praia da Vieirinha é também extremamente popular, mas menos frequentada que a praia de São Torpes e as pequenas praias de Porto Covo.

PASSEIOS NO CAMPO e TRILHO DOS PESCADORES

São uma óptima alternativa para quando as praias estão muito cheias. Não se esqueça de trazer um chapéu e evitar as horas de calor.

Refeições simples e saborosas que pode preparar na sua suite

1.Tábua de queijos, charcutaria e vegetais crocantes e frescos

Uma das soluções mais simples, que não deixa de ser das mais saborosas. As combinações de ingredientes são múltiplas e para um upgrade à séria, acompanhe com um bom vinho da sua preferência. Para a da foto usei presunto, salame, queijos, azeitonas e no grupo dos frescos, cenoura, courgette, tomate, abacate, pepino e azeitonas. Servi ainda uma tacinha de azeite e sal, que posso usar para temperar os vegetais ou molhar o pão à boa maneira do Alentejo. Não é preciso descrever esta receita, basta cortar os legumes todos e tentar dispor no prato de uma forma bonita.

2. Salada de grão-de-bico, atum e ervas aromáticas

Um dos clássicos da gastronomia caseira portuguesa, basta um frasco ou lata de grão-de-bico cozido, uma ou duas latas de atum, e ervas frescas a gosto, alho e/ou cebola são opcionais, mas não se dispensa um bom fio de azeite.

3. Taça de couscous com Feta, Pêssego e Sementes

Tem apenas quatro ingredientes e é uma combinação de sabores surpreendente. Para cozinhar couscous é preciso apenas uma chávena de àgua a ferver, para 1 chávena de couscous.  Deite uma chávena de couscous numa taça que permita que os couscous dobrem de volume. Deite uma pitada de sal no couscous. Ferva a água e verta sobre os couscous. Tape a taça de couscous com um prato ou pano e deixa descansar dez minutos, no final dos dez minutos, separe os couscous com um garfo.

Corte os pêssegos (ou outra fruta) em quartos, os queijo feta em cubos, adicione as sementes e misture tudo. Pode ainda juntar algumas ervas aromáticas e um fio de azeite.

4. Budha bowl

Estão muito na moda e com razão, são equilibradas do ponto de vista nutricional, saborosas e muito fáceis de comer. No fundo uma Budha bowl combina 3 grupos de ingredientes uma base de hidratos de carbono (grão de bico, edamame ou outra leguminosa, couscousarroz ou quinoa) uma base de vegetais crus (abacate, pepino ou espinafres por exemplo) e uma de proteínas (nozes, queijo ou atum), é opcional mas calha sempre bem um topping crocante (batatas fritas esmigalhadas, sementes tostadas ou cebola frita).

5. Pocke Bowl de Salmão

Podia estar na categoria das Budha bowls, mas queria ter aqui a oportunidade de explicar como faço o meu Pocke caseiro. Precisa apenas de 1 ou 2 lombos de salmão congelados, molho de soja, azeite, limão ou vinagre, cebola e sementes de sésamo.  Ponha o salmão a descongelar, quando estiver meio descongelado corte em cubos. Numa taça coloque a cebola picada grosseiramente, o salmão, um fio de azeite, um fio de vinagre ou de sumo de limão, as sementes de sésamo e depois cubra com molho de soja de deixe marinar uns 30 minutos. Para a base pode usar, uma salada, couscous, ou arroz.

6. Noodles instantâneos

É verdade, não são grande alternativa, mas quem nunca…

(S) L O W S E A S O N

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If you are visiting Alentejo, you are a lucky person, but if you are visiting it in low season you are even luckier, it’s feels so much more special…you have this incredible extension of wild paradise just for yourself, that’s quite a treat isn’t?

Traveling became so easy that wherever you go, most likely you will find yourself among a lot of your fellow travelers, sometimes way too many fellow travelers …visiting in (s)low season assures you a bit more privacy.

And there’s a ton of things that are better to enjoy in spring than in the peak of the summer, here’s a couple, that I’ve tried myself and loved it:

H I K I N G

One of my favorite activities, the “Rota Vicentina” paths are very well marked and incredibly beautiful. No need to book, it’s free, you just start whenever you wish and try to make it home before dark. It’s a great way to enjoy the outdoors, feel active and get to know the particular landscape of this region. I quite often do the inland walk because it starts right at our door, but I also did a couple of times the fisherman’s trail that goes by the cliffs overlooking the ocean. Both of them are incredible and operate wonders to your mind, since walking can be quite a meditation exercise, especially in this landscape.

Don’t hesitate to ask us for our shortcuts and tips to make your experience more rewarding.

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H O R S E  R I D I N G

There is horse riding farms nearby, Herdade da Ilha do Pessegueiro (http://www.herdadedopessegueiro.pt).

I’m not experienced (I’ve rode two times in my whole life) but I totally felt like an adventurer in a movie and not like a clumsy tourist, I will never forget the experience and how my but was sore the day after.

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(Meike riding Yse)

S U R F I N G

If you already surf needless to mention the appeal of an empty line up.

In case you don’t surf yet and want to learn, doing it on a wild empty beach, with your instructor devoted just to you or to a small group of friends, will make your experience a lot more special.

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B E A C H  P I C N I C

Eating a sandwich while looking at the ocean, in a deserted beach, is very nice, but why not step up the game one level higher and make it count. Throw in some fancy cheese, earthy bread, a flask of warm tea or some chilled wine, we will advise you on the best locations for it, and even lend you a picnic blanket for your comfort.

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R E S T A U R A N T S

Of course you can go to restaurants any time of the year, but it feels good not to wonder if you are gonna have to wait for a table or not. Check our favorite selection of places to eat or have a drink.

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Y O G A

You have Asthanga Yoga classes running daily from May to October in a location nearby, and Hatha Yoga with Nina, but you can always borrow one of our yoga mats and do your own practice in the wood deck, patio or garden house(when available). DON’T BE SHY!

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M A S S A G E  T H E R A P H Y

Yes you can do this anytime, but you are more likely to get Peter’s magic hands available in low season!

V I L A  N O V A  D E   M I L F O N T E S  A N D  S U R R O U N D I N G S

Porto Covo, the nearest village might be a bit too quiet, something that is just fine for us, but if you are looking for a change in the scenery drive south to Vila Nova de Milfontes,  where Rio Mira meets the Atlantic Ocean offering you stunning views, there is a couple of nice bars and restaurants with views to the ocean, one of our favorites it’s Riverside Pub, with nice cocktails and confort food (choose a table outside and have your meal or drink looking at the river and dunes) . Also Quebra-mar at the beach, a Choupana a classic for sunsets.  Porto das Barcas in the north side of the village, is located near the fishermans harbor, you can leave your car in front of the restaurant and walk down to check the harbor, it has colorful  boats and fat happy cats laying in the sun.

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You can also go up the river in a Stand Up Paddle

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I don’t think listing activities will give you a taste of how exclusive it feels to discover Alentejo in low season, this is something you will have to experience yourself.

M E S A D I N N E R S

When we gather around a table at Cabeça da Cabra, it’s always magic, it can be breakfast, it can be dinner, it can be family, friends, guests… but it feels special and we wanted to share it, we just needed a little push.

Joachim Dhollander got himself a place on our team the minute he said he didn’t had a smartphone. Yes, you’ve read it right, no smartphone, no instagram, nothing but straight in to your face conversations that drift always in to surf, boards and most especially in REAL food. All the time Joachim has not wasted with his smartphone he put in to connecting with farmers, cheese producers, shepherd, fisherman…people that usually do not connect trough instagram but trough actual face to face conversations.

We felt the location was right, that the love we put in to our food was right…but for the first time we can assure everything is right from the source…this is one of our most ambitious projects and it involved getting in to people’s houses to feel the smell of sourdough bread freshly baked, making new friendships among locals, driving trought dirt roads to meet cheesemakers and long conversations in the markets.

In this journey nothing was fast, easy or pratical ..but everything was precious and remarkable.

Come and share this unique experience with us.

 

T H E S U R F … A G A I N

I wanted to give you a heads up informing of two last minute cancelations in our Spring Surf Retreat (10th – 16th of April)… but then I got lost among last year’s retreat photo folder, and felt those moments deserved something a bit more meaningful.

It would seem very unelegant to praise ourselves, and no matter how much we try to keep every single detail perfect, I can’t say that “the house” is what makes it special.

Maybe it’s Lucky, our dog, social host and spiritual guide, we don’t know.

What we can assure you is that we have an intention… the intention to offer you an authentic and meaningful experience… and from here we draft the rest of the experience adapting ourselves to the flow of the nature…so maybe is the sense of communion with the ocean, maybe the food, or just the fact that we all gather here leaving our daily worries behind.

Or maybe because surfing your brains out does wonders to the soul…Whatever magic is thrown in the mixer, it works.

photos by Lisa Maduro, Fabien and @cabecadacabraguesthouse

Y O U R H O S T

Some years ago, in what seemed some kind of temporary delirium, maybe due to the extreme pressure of her career and life in the city, Maria bought an abandoned school building.

The first time she actually set eyes on the school, was 2 weeks after she bought it. The country was in an economic caos, and everyone said it was madness, but it was to late to go back anyway so she could only go forward. She polished, fixed, refurbished until the building was sparkling with love.

She end up quitting her job, and kept on pouring love in to the house, and slowly discovered that… the house, the country side, the ocean were giving it all back. She discovered that what she had bought, couldn’t be measured in square meters, because what came along with it was much more valuable. It meant love, friendship and freedom.

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Obviously deep changes occurred afterwards in her life, but the most important ones are invisible to the eye. Time roles by in a different way in Alentejo, things are not instantaneous, wisdom comes from nature and old people, and you bend your head to the forces of nature. Definitions of luxury change with the growth of your soul…every day one step further.

(photos by Christian  Hansens Sorensen)

 She couldn’t have done it all alone. Duarte is her silent love, the balance of opposites, the anchor on her wild dream of freedom and the main responsible for the sober beauty you can find in the house. The dogs and cats that share the house are her partners in social hosting and get her trough the lonely winter days.

SUNSHINE WEEKENDS

Entre Dezembro e Março, nós na Cabeça da Cabra vamos estar atentos à meteorologia e aproveitar cada minutinho de sol para descobrir as cores do Alentejo nesta estação. Depois de um pequeno-almoço feito para se difrutar sem pressas, vamos convidar os nossos hóspedes a descobrir um dos trilhos da Rota Vicentina.

Para Sábado, o trilho dos pescadores entre a Ilha do Pessegueiro e Vila Nova de Mil Fontes. Este trilho tem uma duração de quatro horas e desenvolve-se ao longo da costa, descobrindo praias secretas, falésias imponentes e toda a grandiosidade do Oceano Atlântico.

No Domingo o caminho histórico, entre a Cabeça da Cabra e a vila do Cercal, um caminho com a duração aproximada de três horas e que surpreende pela diversidade de paisagens que atravessa.

Neste programa especial, a estadia de duas noites vai incluir para além do habitual pequeno-almoço, um lanche caseiro para desfrutar numa pausa de descanso durante a caminhada e o transporte de volta entre o destino final da caminhada e a Cabeça da Cabra Casa de Campo.

Para mais informações contacte-nos para acabecadacabra@gmail.com

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Between December and March, we will be watching the forecast closely, so that we can enjoy every single day with no rain outside. After a breakfast made to be enjoyed slowly, we invite our guests to discover two beautifull trails of Rota Vicentina.

For Saturday, the Fisherman’s Trail between Ilha do Pessegueiro e Vila Nova de Mil Fontes. With an aproximate duration of four hours, allways along the coast, you will discover secret beaches, imposing cliffs and all the greatness of the Atlantic Ocean.

On Sunday the Historic Trail, between our guesthouse and Cercal village, with the aproximate duration of three hours, you will be presented with a surprinsing diversity of landscapes.

In this special program, your two night stay will include, beside our lavishing breakfast, a homemade snack to enjoy during a break on your walk and the transportation between the final destination of your walk back to the guesthouse.

For more information contact us on acabecadacabra@gmail.com

 

 

 

Hosting an artist you admire

I’ve followed Vera‘s photographic work almost from the beguinning, during the last ten years she has patiently documented not only the portuguese music scene, but a wide group of international artists that visited the country during this period. Her work is a beautiful slice of music history happening in Portugal, with wonderfull layers of evolution and transformation…this was what I had to say before I got a message from Vera herself booking a five day stay in our guesthouse, with the intention of retreating for a couple days to focus on her work. I was of course very excited with all this, but tried to act all cool and normal about it. I had many questions, how did she managed to be so prolific, how does she manage to build such a strong identity without ever compromising. During her stay I could see the skills that were behind her work, a childlike curiousity, endless energy combined with simplicity of that down to the earth, bare to the bone kind, wasting no time with bullshit and deep love and respect for  the people she works with. It was very  inspiring to see her work and it was very conforting to know she deserves all the success she has and more. During her stay she was going trough ten years of pictures to prepare the launch of a new website celebrating ten years of her blog, but she was kind enough to make some pictures of Cabeça da Cabra during her stay, check them here.

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photo by Vera Marmelo

ABOUT THIS SUMMER

It’s been four years since this journey started, so I didn’t expect I would be writing about discovery now, but this was all the summer was about. Places and people can have many layers, so this was the year to get in to the deeper layers of this magical place. A summer of watching many sunrises and breathing the fresh morning air, of staying in the water until dusk, a summer of sharing food and stories around the table with friends we don’t dare to call guests anymore.

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