Santiago Hotel : a tribute to the Alentejo region

Still a lot of people remember the time when there was no motorway to the Algarve, and those who came from the north stopped to sleep in Santiago do Cacém, in the only inn in the area. However, the evolution of the times he was in charge of shortening the route to the south and Santiago do Cacém no longer be a reason to stop.

The inn, a manor house with a panoramic view of the historical district, has closed, and it remains untouched since then. But it is not abandoned. For now, and since last summer, turned up in the gym of the Santiago Hotel Cooking and Nature, the first hotel of the group DHM in the Alentejo, who was born logo on the side, to return some (much needed) animation to the city.

The entry does not understand where it ends and the hotel begins and the restaurant (or vice versa). The lobby presents itself in three acts: on the one hand the reception, that also is a bar, right in front of a shop of local products, wines, cheeses and dishes and in the background the restaurant, which is open to the dining room and to the garden. They share the space with a common love, the kitchen is to the back of it which unfolds the action of the hotel. We now understand the designation of “restaurant-hotel”, in chronological order. There are 31 rooms, an outdoor swimming pool with sun beds and a terrace, which is also an extension of the restaurant.

The mission is to feed the conviviality at the table by challenging the guests to put the hand in the mass. It is, therefore, perfectly possible that the thought of a weekend calm in the Alentejo ahab suddenly been transformed to a dining experience that begins behind the counter and ends… well, you can end where you started, both on the table, the two, as between friends or with the family. The hotel’s philosophy, focused in the areas of Cooking and Nature, brings together the culture and tradition local to the conviviality at the table and invites the guests-potential-bosses-in-rise to participate in the entire process, from the morning visit to the market, the harvest of fresh herbs in the garden of the hotel or, for example, in the recreation of some of the dishes of The Land, the restaurant where the Chef Diogo Waters makes it happen a letter of praise to local products and seasoning alentejo in more creative and bold. The products are always in season and so the menu will varying the taste of the seasons. In the summer, after a beach day (we are 15 minutes from the beaches of the Costa Vicentina), the dinner is served in the garden around a grill Josper of where they are coming in countless various cuts of pork to accompany with salads of the season, and sweet potato.

In the lobby are being advertised the workshops in the kitchen, but the system is not strict. It may happen that there is a business idea for breakfast and that earn way below this. That is, it is not surprising that while the room begins to dress for the lunch is to crumble the bread hard, the cut onion and garlic and chop the coriander to make a bread – which will probably be lunch for apprentices and staff. For the kids, the workshop of pizza craftsmanship is guaranteed success, even if some escape to the “kitchen of the machines” and prefer to help with the soup. If you like a lot of eating but not feeling particularly with the idea of getting your hands dirty, there is always the option of staying at the table, at a distance of reasonable security, to see it happen… and to eat comfortably.

Is the invitation: on the day 9 of December, the Heads Diogo Waters and Filipe Ramalho joined by the flavours of the alentejo in a tasting dinner for four hands , which comes to confirm the success of the first edition of the initiative “Alentejo at the Table”, which had its premiere on 2 December in the Torre de Palma Wine Hotel. The value of the program for the week-end with two nights in a double room with breakfast, dinner tasting and cooking class with the chef: 170€ per person in a double room.

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