“The medronho can also be used to produce one of the most appreciated beverages in the Algarve, a really strong firewater brandy – as we Portuguese call it, Aguardente de Medronho (…)” . Perfect to end a truly Portuguese meal!
Common in all Mediterranean region, Arbutus Unedo (Medronheiro in Portuguese or Strawberry Tree in English), is a small tree sometimes considered a shrub. In Portugal, these small trees are very common to see in the inner Alentejo and in the Algarve, although it grows in other parts of the country as well.
They can pass unnoticed if you don’t pay attention. But when it is the medronho time (the red fruit, when ripe), you’ll notice that they are planted almost everywhere in the Algarve.
Actually, this tree is very ancient since it was the Romans that gave the name of it and used it as symbol of good luck. Some Romans thought the tree had magical powers and because of that, they used to hang tree branches at the door of their houses, to bring them luck.
The name came when the Roman Emperor, Virgilio started to call this…
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