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Dirty Tails: Cascais Marina now boasts a cocktail bar

Open until 2 a.m., it features DJ sets every week and a menu that ranges from classics to signature drinks.

Written by
Ricardo Farinha
Dirty Tails
Dirty Tails
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It's called Dirty Tails, and it's not hard to guess that it's dedicated to the art of mixology. It opened at the Cascais Marina on February 10th, in one of the outdoor spaces, offering both classic cocktails — which tell the story of mixology — and various signature drinks.

For Alberto Romão, the mastermind behind the project, it's a "dream come true." At 45, with almost 30 years of experience in the field, it's the first time he has conceived a bar in his own image. Before Dirty Tails, the space housed a champagne bar where Romão worked as a consultant.

The previous project didn't quite go as planned, but the owner, entrepreneur Rui Costa Reis, decided to breathe new life into the place by leveraging Alberto's talent. "Rui said he really liked my ideas and decided we should start this project together. Essentially, it was about taking a lifetime of experience and applying it here."

Dirty Tails
Francisco Romão Pereira

It all began 35 years ago in Santarém. Alberto Romão's father opened a bar in the city center called Xantarim. It became a success, to the point of being recognized as one of the top 100 bars in the world. It was also considered a local historical heritage and was even visited by the President of the Republic at the time, Jorge Sampaio.

For Alberto, who grew up behind the bar, among glasses and bottles, his passion was born there and never slowed down. At the age of 16, he left school and made his way in life. He started as a barback, worked in the dishwashing area, served tables, and finally, behind the bar, in numerous bars and nightclubs in the region. At the age of 20, he began managing Xantarim, an experience that lasted for four years. Alberto wanted more and moved to Lisbon to study at the Cocktail Academy, with Paulo Ramos. "He brought the American bar to Portugal, he's the bible of the bar, a master of mixology."

Dirty Tails
Dirty Tails

He managed a beach bar in Comporta, was the bartender at the Nogueiras restaurant, worked with various brands, provided training, did consulting and private events. Before Dirty Tails, he worked as a bar supervisor at the Praia no Parque group.

At the Cascais Marina, he aims to cultivate the "art of hospitality" and "customer-centered approach," even though it's a "relaxed" space. He enjoys making recommendations based on customer preferences, who might want to start with the house cocktail menu.

Dirty Tails
O cocktail Dirty Tails

The Dirty Tails (€16), for example, features passion fruit, white chocolate, gold, and sparkling wine. The Don Draper (€16), named after the protagonist of the Mad Men series, is made with bourbon, vermouth, amaro, and maraschino. As for the Dirty Mule (€12), it includes black beer foam, charcoal, and pineapple and lime lollipop. Dare to try a Malandra (€14), with vodka, pennyroyal, cucumber, orange, strawberry sorbet, and melon; a Solero (€14), with vanilla vodka, vanilla, cream, and passion fruit; or a Dirty Tails Gibson (€16), with gin, spring onion, barbecue sauce, grape, and "smoke".

Classics are also available, from the Cuba Libre to the Old Fashioned, from the Espresso Martini to the Bloody Mary, as well as the Long Island Ice Tea, the Black Russian, the Pisco Sour, the caipirinha, or the mojito, among many others. At Dirty Tails, wines, sparkling wines, beers, and other alcoholic beverages are also served, along with a variety of snacks designed to accompany the drinks.

Dirty Tails
Dirty Tails

That includes octopus carpaccio (€16), lobster taco (€24), Charcuterie and Company's charcuterie and cheese board (€35), or the Three Pinchos (€15), which includes cod with parsley oil, lobster with truffle cream, and black pork sausage with sun-dried tomato.

Adjacent to the 36-seat terrace, they host DJ sets every Friday and Saturday, and they are preparing to start hosting Dirty Sundays - Sundays where they plan to have regular late afternoon parties with a DJ and a variation of the Bloody Mary. On those days, they also plan to implement food pairing with a guest chef who can prepare something special and exclusive in the finger food area.

Dirty Tails has just opened, but it doesn't hide its ambitions: they plan to open a bar under the brand in Lisbon, as well as in one of the two major Spanish cities, Madrid or Barcelona. For now, it's at Cascais Marina that you can absorb (and sip) the concept.

Marina de Cascais, Shop 32-C, Tue-Sun 17.00-02.00

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