Following from my recent post on the stunning Montebelo Vista Alegre Ílhavo Hotel, I felt the equally impressive Vista Alegre restaurant deserved its own post. After all, as far as I’m concerned, every delicious meal deserves its own post.
We decided before even looking at the menu that we would have dinner at this restaurant. It had been a busy day and we were pretty tired and it was an easy option because it was right there. (Even though people tend to avoid hotel restaurants, this is one that shouldn’t be overlooked!) After a quick glance at the menu, we were pleased to see we had lots of delicious options to choose from.
The service was excellent. The courteous and attentive waiters, came around a few times at the start of the meal with a wonderful selection of breads from which to choose. I love Portuguese bread and couldn’t get enough of it! We were presented with two types of butter, olives and an olive oil/balsamic combo served on the coolest sampling dish we had ever seen.
The house white wine was wonderful and a little too easy to drink (but I managed to resist the temptation and only had one glass). We thoroughly enjoyed the mushroom & chestnut and the seafood soups we ordered. Because we had filled up on so much bread, we got two more starters as mains. One was a huge shrimp dish and the other was a goat’s cheese puff pastry with assorted nuts and honey. They were absolutely delicious and we savored every bite until our Vista Alegre plates were practically licked clean. We shared a small chestnut panna cotta style dessert which was a sweet and refreshing way to finish the meal.
The decor was in keeping with that of the rest of the hotel: clean, modern and with charming Vista Alegre plates lining the walls. The sky blue Vista Alegre/Atlantis water glasses (designed in an 18th century diamond tip style) matched the blue seats against the walls. The stylish chairs were surprisingly comfortable, which meant we were able to focus on our food and relax while we ate.
The best part was that our restaurant experience wasn’t over just because the day was: breakfast was served there the next morning. A lovely continental and hot breakfast was waiting for us. There was a great selection of cakes and typical Portuguese and regional foods for guests to try, including pão de ló, a sponge cake often served with a doce de ovos cream. For those with more “regular” tastes, there are thick pancakes, thin crepes, breads, jams, cereals, eggs, fresh fruit, cheeses and much more. I started the day just as satisfyingly as I had finished the previous one. Thank you, Vista Alegre restaurant, from the bottom of my love-filled belly!