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Family-friendly 5-star dining

Having a taste for the finer things in life can be inhibiting and often completely out of reach for the average budget. Fortunately, every now and then you stumble across a place that ticks all the boxes.

The Clubhouse at Monte Santo, just outside Carvoeiro, offers a 5-star setting with very affordable prices and family-friendly service. Sipping an apéritif whilst perusing the menu, and watching the sun set with some Bossa Nova playing softly in the background, was a very pleasant way to unwind and prepare for the evening ahead.

The menu is comprehensive and excellent value, with the Chef’s Selection at just €25 for three courses. At only 30 years old, head chef Nuno Alves, from the Alentejo, has worked his way up through the ranks at Suites Alba and Cascade Resort, and is now showcasing his talents at Monte Santo, where he has developed the current menus.

The dishes are created using beautiful local produce with a contemporary and creative touch. I can personally recommend both the mixed fish and duck main courses, which had surprising ingredients in them but were both delicious!

The wine list featured some well-known Portuguese labels along with a lovely selection of Algarvean wines, namely João Clara, which is produced in Alcantarilha with grapes from Monchique. The desserts were devilishly good. The chocolate was incredibly rich and velvety and the meringue ice cream with a crispy caramel and almond praline was to die for. The staff were attentive but not invasive and incredibly patient with the children, which was very refreshing to see.