Thursday, March 25, 2010

This Is What I Drink : 11

Friday, March 19th:

Cafe (from an automated hotel machine, Cafe Cortado (hand drawn from a machine...from Portugal!!!), more red wine with lunch, white wine with dinner, more cafe licor, and some Mahou beer.

As you see from the list, it was a long and fulfilling day of beverages in our second day in Tui. I'll start with the hotel coffee. I pressed the "espresso" button hoping for something good to wake me up, but 9/10 when you press a button on a machine, not much good will come of it. That was the case this time. I was feeling the craving for caffeine as I was still feeling jet lagged and maybe it helped in that regard, but the coffee was watery and not very flavorful. That led us to our next destination in Portugal where the day before we were told that they had super strong and good espresso.

It was only about a 25 minute walk to Portugal where we found an unfortunately super touristy castle town in Portugal. We figured we had come that far. so we settled into one of the cafes and ordered up some cafe cortado (espresso cut with a tiny bit of milk). To be perfectly honest, the coffee was nothing outrageously different from any other I've had in Europe. That is to say that most of the European espresso I've had has been absolutely delicious and has plenty of kick. It was exactly what I was looking for after the disappointment of the hotel machine coffee. On the way back we bought a bottle of cafe licor at a supermarket for about 6 euro which we would enjoy throughout the weekend. Next was lunch where we enjoyed a few more glasses of red wine with a meal of "fake baby eel salad", a Spanish omelette, more croquettes, and some masterful chocolate souffle.

Dinner was a fun experience as the waiter didn't speak any English and we had no natives to help us with our ordering, but it went out without much of a hitch, especially the phrase, "tres mas copas de vino blanco (three more glasses of the white wine!). So I finally dug into the famously recommended Albarino white wine and it was everything it was made out to be. Once again it was nice and dry, not nearly as sweet which normally turns me off from white wines. Galicia has a fine product there and I wish I could have smuggled some back because I haven't liked a white wine like that in a long, long time.

Last but not least was a trip to the concert hall to see the wild and crazy Batida and drink some Mahou beer, a Spanish export. I was kind of excited to try this beer as I don't think I had seen it in my other trips to Spain, but it didn't give me anything special. It went down smoothly which was fine, but as with may mass produced beers, the flavor just wasn't there. It helped ease the seizure of the Batida show, but it didn't help enhance my opinion of most European beers (Belgium excluded).

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