New Mediterranean restaurant with own organic garden opens in Faro

Tia Ana, a new restaurant which uses ingredients from its own organic vegetable garden and orchards, has opened in Faro.

Representing a €700,000 investment and the culmination of a lifelong dream, the restaurant will be officially inaugurated on Tuesday, June 11.

It serves Mediterranean-inspired food made with local ingredients, many grown at the property where the restaurant is located.

The wine selection is also plentiful and features mostly wines made in the Algarve.

Ana Paula Carvalho is the owner and told Barlavento newspaper that she decided to leave behind her career as a university professor to pursue her dream of owning a restaurant.

“I was a bit tired of teaching and always dreamed of opening a small restaurant that served tasty homemade food. The opportunity to purchase this property appeared and then the idea snowballed,” she told the paper.

Ana Paula purchased the property, revamped the building where the restaurant is located and set up the vegetable gardens, orchards and even a greenhouse so that at least part of their ingredients are produced at the property.

Ana Paula’s son Ricardo – who has a degree in kitchen management and production – is the chef and is responsible for the menu.

“For lunch we will have a menu with meat, fish, vegetarian and sometimes vegan dishes,” says Ricardo, adding that at night the dishes will be “slightly lighter”.

Side dishes will play a big part in the restaurant’s meals, with the goal being to avoid serving the “usual chips” that accompany so many meals at Portuguese restaurants.

In fact, the chef aims to take advantage of the restaurant’s own organic garden and avoid serving fried food.

“We have a garden with strawberries, cucumber, courgette, tomatoes, lettuce, peppers, beets and turnips, as well as aromatic herbs, radishes, onions, pumpkins and fava beans,” explains Ricardo, adding that the family also grows goji beans, oranges, peaches, apricots and plums. Vital to the success of the crops is Ana Paula’s other son, Nuno Carvalho, an agricultural engineer.

Tia Ana is also an environment-friendly restaurant, refusing to serve drinks in plastic bottles. It is also equipped with four solar panels while another 50 photovoltaic panels are due to be installed soon.

Everyone is invited to visit Tia Ana and discover the restaurant’s take on Mediterranean food.

The restaurant is located on Estrada Senhora da Saúde on the way to Mar e Guerra.

Original story written by Maria Simiris for Jornal Barlavento