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Cor de tangerina - Guimarães

Vegetarian flavours in the lands of D’el Rei

IMG_2358The colour of orange is not the same as the colour of tangerine given that the latter is a Guimarães exclusive and more specifically in Portuguese, Cor de Tangerina, the name of the vegetarian restaurant located right in front of the castle that was the birthplace of the County of Portugal.
Conceived of in Santo Tirso but put into practice in Guimarães, this is the only vegetarian restaurant in all of the city but one that still manages to pack the gastronomic history of the surrounding region into details such as usage of typical aromatic herbs such as rosemary or the presence of smoked foods, both combining in such dishes as rosemary rise and smoked tofu. Similarly, Cor de Tangerina serves up a vegetarian version of the traditional local ‘hunter’s sauce’ that humorously got nicknamed “hunter’s sauce that did not go out hunting”.
Cozinha vegetariano
Following its opening eight years ago by a group of friends, this restaurant is now run by Dinis Mendes, Liliana Duarte and Eduardo Gonçalves, who follow a fusion cooking style incorporating various healthy alternatives such as veganism, raw foodism and the macrobiotic approach. The health related concerns all reflect to a certain extent on various of the desserts especially a take on chocolate mousse incorporating Demerara sugar and dark chocolate. In this restaurant’s kitchen, the choice of ingredients is fundamental and not only due to their flavours but also due to their role in the history of Guimarães cuisine and equally to the importance attributed to sourcing food.
Whilst in its origins, Cor de Tangerina was a store specialising in local products and then named Azul de Tangerina, this focus has never left those cooking up the dishes as Dinis, Liliana and Eduardo also make a point of sourcing ingredients from local small scale producers whilst also organising a monthly organic fair. In this way, through proximity agriculture, the ideal of fair trade is put into practice in the surrounding region alongside resolving sustainability related issues through recourse to seasonally available ingredients. This posture derives from how this restaurant also displays other facets, in particular its cooperative nature, as a means of affirming active participation in sustainable development. Another of the dimensions that Dinis, Liliana and Eduardo continue to focus on is efforts to reinforce alimentary awareness among the general public through small events such as school visits in order to demonstrate ways of eating healthily and in parallel explaining the facts implied in the production and retailing of many of the products that get into the hands of children.
cor de tangerina - GuimarãesEven while at the beginning, Dinis, Liliana and Eduardo did face some resistance due to the fact that Guimarães remains a conservative and traditionalist city, they do now count local citizens among their regular clients with greater acceptance in the broader community and in addition to being a hit with international visitors to the city. Here, the authentic Lusitanian flavours truly merge with the modernity of a vegetarian based died and hence embracing both traditional and contemporary styles within the same menu.

About the author

Hugo Filipe Lopes:Has a degree in sociology and a post-graduate qualification in clinical nutrition from the Egas Moniz Faculty. Collaborates with a number of online publications, a trainer and nutritional therapist. Honourable mentions in the Casa da Imprensa and Lisboa à Letra competitions..

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