My husband and I happened upon this delightful place while strolling through Evora one Saturday afternoon a few weeks ago. We were first taken by the beautiful entrance -- a colorful arched opening at the end of an alleyway. What lay beyond? we wondered. Pateo is a charming courtyard restaurant, a wine and tapas bar, a shady and quiet oasis. We loved it!
Ricardo was our waiter and he provided impeccable service as well as interesting conversation. At the end of our long and leisurely lunch, he offered us a taste of puejo, a delicious local liquer made from pennyroyal, a member of the mint family. This was a treat we would never have known about had Ricardo not introduced us to it. (We promptly went out and bought a bottle to bring back to the US.) From Ricardo we learned more about Portugal (this was our first visit) and made a list of things to do on our next trip - which I hope will be soon. Oh, and the background music was the perfect addition. Some Fado, some jazz, all very interesting.
So, the atmosphere, the service was all wonderful. What about the food? Delicious! We ordered a sausage and cheese tray to share, which included some delicious chutney. I also ordered a bowl of gazpacho unlike anything in the US. Light broth, chunks of tomato with red, yellow and green pepper. The soup was wonderful, and plenty for two. But the best part was the fried sardines served alongside. Who knew that sardines would become my new favorite food? Light, crispy, flavorful without an overwhelmingly fishy smell or taste. In a word, fabulous!
We so enjoyed our lunch that we considered returning that evening for dinner. But decided to wait until our next trip to Portugal. Thank you, Ricardo, for a perfect afternoon in Evora!
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