You haven’t been to Galicia if you didn’t indulge in food. There are so many things you can try and such a fresh produce, that every step on the way brings new occasions to try something new
Pontevedra confirms that too with many restaurants and bars in the city. So, for a complete food experience on our visit to Pontevedra, we went on a tour with Turiña and Terras de Pontevedra to discover some of the best places for food and drink.
Where to eat in Pontevedra (and drink)
We had heard great things about Tabula Rasa long before we went on this trip to Pontevedra, so we were pretty excited to know we would be eating there.
What we had there was a mix of old and new: local beef jerky with cherry tomatoes from their garden, goat cheese and cod with allada foam (allada is a traditional galician paprika, garlic and olive oil sauce.) All superb!
Also, if you have never drank wine on a bowl, take your chance there, it’s the traditional way of drinking and it gives a different experience.
Where: Rúa Marquesa 4, Pontevedra. Also on Facebook
We went to O Grifon for the same reason everybody does: good beer. And we found it. What we weren’t expecting was to try one of the newest innovations in beer in Spain: Nasa.
Nasa is not a craft beer not a traditional mass-market beer. It was launched with the help of a very successful crowdfunding project they did on Crowdcube and it is a lager with the soul of an artisan lifestyle beer.
We enjoyed it with empanada de lacón con grelos (traditional pork shoulder with turnip greens pie) and chorizo bread, which you can see surrounding the beer bottles 😉
Where: Rúa Real 4. Also on Facebook
Right at Plaza da Leña, there are two restaurants worth mentioning: O Eirado and Loaira. They belong to Iñaki Bretal, member of Grupo Nove, the culinary collective that gathers the most innovative cooks in Galicia
The main difference between them (beyond prices) is that while O Eirado offers a more innovative signature cuisine, Loaira has a more traditional approach.
We sat outside at the Loaira restaurant terrace to enjoy their cod fritters with cauliflower puree. We also had Vegetables Tempura with soy mayonnaise and a tataki with the meat of a local cow breed: Candelá, which came from nearby town of Castro Caldelas.
Where: Praza da Leña 2. Also on Facebook
Entering La Navarra feels like going back in time. This old wine bar has been there since 1925 and it is still one of the most popular meeting points of the city.
What you will find here is a traditional bar with wooden tables and one of the widest collections of wine bottles in town. They also serve traditional pork sausages, cold meats and cheese.
And, if you have the chance, visit the old cellar. They have one of the best kept secrets in town: the old appointment books that the family wrote along the years. Listening how somebody from the 1930s learned about the discovery of penicillin or how they celebrated their marriage is shocking and at the same time moving. They only open it on special occasions but it might be one when you visit.
Where: Princesa 13. Also on Facebook
A tenda da Gata
A tenda da Gata is our last recommendation and one of our favorite spots for food in Pontevedra. But don’t get me wrong, it is not a restaurant or a cafe. It is a delicatessen shop that sells everything from wine to empanada that is produced in a sustainable and responsible way in Galicia.
Yolanda, the owner, is a very knowledgeable and friendly person. She will introduce you to the local wines and craft beers they have and recommend the best canned foods, preserves and cheeses from the region to take back home. We went there at night and enjoyed our wines with seafood croquettes, tetilla with pepper jam and fried mussels among other delicacies from their catering.
Our recommendation? Try to visit on Thursday’s night. They organize tastings with local producers, each week a different type. Mostly run in Spanish, but send them an email and let them know your needs.
Where: They will be moving to the Gastromarket at the Fish Market when it opens. In the meantime, you will find them at 22 Peregrina street, just a few steps from Peregrina church.
Some extra info
There are several private parkings available around town and many public parking areas (pay, but weekends are free.)
How to get there
By train: Renfe operates direct trains from Vigo, Santiago de Compostela and even Madrid and Barcelona on a daily basis. Connecting trains with Portugal, Ponferrada or Irun are also available
By plane: Closest airport is Vigo (VGO 30km), next: Santiago de Compostela (SCQ 59km).
The Way: the Portuguese Way goes through the city towards Santiago de Compostela.