- MOREKASHA Jun 20, 2008 12:30 PM
Pontevedra turned out to be one of our fave cities, if not the fave, in Galicia. It's perfectly located for good day trips. Cambados and the wine regions of Albarino are about an hour drive, the beach towns are also close by as well as good but difficult hiking to the east.
A taberna we fell in love with was not even a Gallego place but Taberna La Navarra on Rua Princesa. This is genuine old Taberna dating from 1925. It looks a bit dim from the outside and they don't have outside tables. They specialize in wines and selling wines to go, so they are also a bit of a tienda. We debated our next move while standing out front and it turns out we are very happy we made that turn in to the bar. Their blanco selection by the glass didn't seem to be other than 1 obscure Albarino. Behind the bar there is a selection of plain clear bottles w/handwritten labels, This is their homemade orujo. Flavors were cilantro! Tostada (barrel aged?,) herbias, clear and black berry if my memory has recovered. I had the tostado, the hierbas as well the cilantro. They were all tasty but the hierbas lingers longer in my memory than the others. They also specialize in meats from Leon. Handing from the ceiling by way of a pulley system is Cecina from the mountains of Leon made w/no chemicals. When sliced (on a machine) the meat reminds you of Texas smoked brisket, there is a ring around the edge of the meat that is a different color, but not pink. The meat was succulent (if that can be said about cecina), and just jumping with deep rich flavor. The next night we tried the lomo from the same producer but the cecina was clearly superior. The lomo was good but it was a bit etherial for us. By the 2nd night there they knew us and were fairly friendly. The son of the founder was ill so his daughters were helping out. One of the daughters gave us great tips for hiking East of A Coruna and the name of bar up in that area that serves shark as a Tapa. Sadly, we never made it to that bar. We were very sad to leave Pontevedra and we just adored this place. Nothing fancy, just soulful.
There's a little Gallego place (A'Lareira) next door to Navarra that's not bad, but being next door, it gets lost in the shadow of Navarra. We had a peppers stuffed w/baccalo & 2 albarinos for 12 euros.
On Praza da Lena, there is a bar on the corner that (Eirado da Lena) that has a homemade Chrizo that was great in a revolto as well as a stand alone dish. It had a nice crispy skin and an almost citrony, tangy flavor. Defianately one of the better chorizos we had. Theyalso served some great albarinos that we had never heard of, 3 euros a glass max.
Around the corner from Prz da Leno is a fancier bar called Figueroa 1827 where we had a racion of Bellota. On Lena there are about 5 places and most looked good. Eirado is worth a visit.
The Praza just around the corner from Lena (on the other side of the Hotel Ruas) is a bit more crowed and down market. There were two other Praza/Plazas that we wanted to hang out on but they were under reconstruction so that limited our choices somewhat. We had 3 nights in Pontevedra and never felt as if we were restricted in our choices.