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Where to go in Ponta Delgada: A wine lover’s guide

Ever wondered where the Decanter team go on holiday? Our in-house team recommend where to eat and drink, from their own trips. Decanter Digital Content Manager Ellie Douglas shares her insider guide below...

Where to go in Ponta Delgada: A wine lover’s guide

São Miguel is the main island of the Azores, and Ponta Delgada is the main Port town – but it’s easy explore the rest of this beautiful island from here.

You’ll find plenty of great local produce which is reflected in the menus when you eat out; plenty of of local seafood and beef. It’s also easy to eat out well for a great price here.

Whilst only a small bit of wine is made on this island, we mostly stuck to drinking wines from the other islands – for example, Pico produces a fair amount.

Ponta Delgada is also the international airport for all of the islands. It’s four hours to Ponta Delgada from London, and also from the East Coast of the USA.

The flight paths to the islands are only going to increase over the next few years, so visit soon before everyone else does…

Tasquinha Vieira

When you walk in to Tasquinha Vieira, you could be going into a trendy wine bar in Dalston, with a stylish, minimalist interior.

The open kitchen means you can watch the chefs at work.

The menu is small and often changing; we enjoyed slow cooked beef, with a sharp salsa verde, and fresh tuna steak with risotto.

We went fairly early in the evening, so could walk in, but it is small, so booking could be a good idea.

ponta Delgada

Tasquinha Vieira. Credit: Tasquinha Vieira Instagram

See also: Azores islands travel guide

À Terra, Azor hotel

Steak is the real speciality here, the restaurant in a stylish, 5* hotel. There are glass cases of cuts of meat through the restaurant, as well as an extensive collection of wines on display.

If you can, go for one of the sharing steaks; but be warned, they are huge.

There is also a pizza oven, for freshly made delicate, thin crust pizzas, so there is plenty of choice aside from the meat.

After dinner, head to the ‘whale watching’ rooftop bar, for an exotic cocktail, or the downstairs bar where the enomatic machines are.

This is also a lovely hotel to stay in, with excellent breakfast and friendly staff.

Ponta Delgada

A Terre. Credit Azor Hotel

Big 21

Don’t let the slightly bizarre name put you off this restaurant.

Another spot for lovely local seafood, and a great burger, as well as excellent desserts, with huge thought behind flavours and textures.

This is also where we had our favourite wine of the trip – Curral Atlantis, Colheita Selcionada 2017, from Pico, which is sadly not available in the UK to enjoy again.

Restaurant Ramires

This was an accidental find, walking along the marina in the sunshine and looking for some lunch.

Go here for a taste of authentic Portuguese piri piri chicken – a long way away from Nandos.

Sit back with chicken, chips, tomato salad and the local island beer ‘Especial’, made on the island, looking over the ocean. Even better, our meal for two came in at just under 20 euros.

Things to do

Make time in your trip to head over to Furnas, North East of Ponta Delgada. Hike around the lakes, and visit the hot springs.

Visit the town of Furnas itself, where restaurants specialise in the local delicacy – stews made up of chicken, local sausage and beans, which are slow-cooked directly in the hot springs.

Ponta Delgada

A local delicacy is cooked directly in the hot springs. Credit: Ellie Douglas/ Decanter

Travel East from Ponta Delgada along the coast, where you can pick up a small 10-minute boat to the islet of Vila Franco do Campo. Take a picnic and spend the day at this natural pool.

On the north of the island, you’ll find black beaches, or take a trip west for the views of Sete Cidades lakes.

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