To design your own memorable Brazilian holiday, head to Rio and book a holiday rental apartment in Copacabana. This most famous suburb is home to some of the country’s best eateries, and is by far your best choice if a culinary trip of a lifetime is what you desire. To help you get started we’ve devised this delicious guide to the country’s best dishes, so follow your nose and head forth…heaven awaits.
The Brazilian churrascaria restaurant is a mix between a steakhouse and a Chinese yum cha. Meat is what you come to savour, but instead of ordering from a menu, you simply pick from the offerings of the passing waiters. We warn you however, that some serious digestive stamina is required!
This non-stop meat gorge is a definite highlight of Brazilian cooking, and a sure fire way of correcting any misguided vegetarian inclinations. Once seated inside, you’ll be given a card: one side green, the other red. The idea is very simple…green you eat, red you don’t! The expert waiters circle the room holding incredibly enormous skewers of meat and, as long as your card is turned green-side up, you will be served incessantly.
Brazilian prime beef is of the highest calibre, as are their ranges of lamb, pork, veal and chicken. The meat is cooked over an open coal grill, giving the meat a delectable charcoal flavour. Various dipping sauces are served alongside the meat, as are many different types of salads. However, we do believe the vegetables in these establishments are purely for decoration; so don’t be surprised if you ask for a vegetarian dish and the waiter breaks in a fit of hysterics…try not to take it personally.
You’ll find plenty of churrascarias in and around Copacabana Beach; the quality is outstanding and they are all packed every night of the week. Simply pick the one which entices you most and gorge away!
For an extremely cultural (and historical) epicurean treat, then look out for feijoada restaurants. Brazil’s national dish is said to date back to the old days of slavery, and has remained at the core of this enticing culture. If you have an aversion to eating obscure animal innards however, now be a good time to get over it.
Traditionally eaten only on a Saturday, the feijoada is a stew containing black beans, bacon, pork ribs (so far so good) and one or several of the following ingredients: pork or beef ears, feet, loin, tongue and intestinal bits and bobs. While the dish may not necessarily be a feast for the eyes (think unidentifiable blubbers swimming in a dark brown broth), the stew is actually quite delicious. Don’t miss the chance to try it. Even just to tick that box.
Eat by the kilo!
At Kilograma, a Brazilian restaurant chain, the local food experience is taken to a whole new weight class…literally. Here, you eat and pay by the kilo!
This novel idea has taken Rio by storm, and eat-by-weight restaurants are found on almost every corner of Copacabana Beach. Sumptuous buffet spreads offer endless temptations, and are a great option if on holidays with a family. Everyone just pays for what they consume, and you have the freedom of trying weird and wonderful dishes. Popular with locals and tourists alike, these joints are, cheap, cheerful and usually of prime quality. By far the most wide spread of all the typical Brazilian eateries, finding one close to your holiday rental apartment should be a piece of cake.