Living elsewhere in the Algarve and only occasionally passing through Vale do Lobo and Quinta do Lago, I have never had reason until recently to venture into the small Pingo Doce supermarkets, located respectively at the entrance to Vale do Lobo and in the Buganvilia Plaza shopping centre at the entrance to Quinta do Lago.
The Pingo Doce supermarket chain is not what we would really expect to find at the doors of the Algarve’s two most upmarket resorts, but the people at Pingo Doce have seized the opportunity and gone to great lengths to up their game and cater to the well-heeled clientele of the so-called Golden Triangle.
These are two very good little supermarkets offering everything those on holiday at luxury villas in the area or indeed local residents require on a day-to-day basis or for a decent BBQ, so good wine is every bit as essential as the food.
Not only do they have a very decent selection of Portuguese wines covering all the main regions, but both supermarkets also feature sections dedicated to foreign wines that far surpass what can be found at most major supermarkets here in Portugal.
The wines are imported and distributed by Algarve-based company Prime Wine and include a great selection of rosés, mostly from Provence with well-known brands such as Mirabeau and their flagship wine Pure.
Look beyond the rosés, however, and you will find other high-quality French wines such as Sancerre Le Pierrier (€23.69) and the fabulous Premier Cru Pouilly-Fuissé from Domaine Trouillet (€37) and a Premier Cru Chablis from Famille Savary €34.99€, to mention just a few of the whites.
From Italy, for those who love the rich style of an Amarone, there is Amarone della Valpolicella from Antiche Terre (€27.99) and from New Zealand, a classy Sauvignon Blanc from Australasian winery of the year 2021, Craggy Range (€19.99).
This is just a small selection of what is on offer, so when looking for foreign wines, these two little supermarkets are well worth a visit.