Tavira’s newest vegetarian restaurant and bar
Bio.Tequim: Tavira’s newest vegetarian restaurant and bar
On the street that leads directly from Tavira’s bijou railway station to the Rua da Liberdade and the town centre, within one of the white arcades, you will find a cool, friendly vegetarian restaurant. Its calming interior is white and pale turquoise. The colour scheme is carried outside to the tables on the cobbles, where large umbrellas shelter you from the heat of the sun.
The food is wonderful, freshly prepared in the little kitchen from local produce, organically grown wherever possible. The regular menu features both vegetarian and vegan dishes, such as sweet potato gnocchi in tomato sauce, and courgette spaghetti with tamari and ginger, and it’s always worth asking in case there’s a special on any given day. The house wine is Portuguese and organic. The three house desserts are vegan: coconut brownie, lime cheesecake and a take on tiramisu, their sweetness supplied by dates or agave.
The owners, Marcelo and Andreia, opened the restaurant in spring 2018. Originally from Paraná in the south of Brazil, the once teenage sweethearts rekindled the flame further down the road and settled together in Tavira, where they have been part of the restaurant scene for several years. This is their first solo venture. As well as being lovers of food, they have a strong commitment to the environment. No single-use plastic appears here. The straws are stainless steel and reusable; all bottled water comes in glass. Takeaway food is packaged in compostable boxes.
There’s a bar with high stools, where the ceiling is hung with lamps whose light shades were once LP records, ‘melted’ by Marcelo. Coffees, teas, waters, smoothies, wines, beers, aperitifs and digestifs are all available. The made-to-order turmeric lemonade (limonada de cúrcuma), using lemons, muscovado sugar and turmeric root – the powder is too bitter, says Andreia – is especially good.