The last time I went to Fogo de Chao was few months after this upscale steakhouse opened, back in December 2013. I even went to one of their locations in Sao Paolo that I found of lesser quality than their sister restaurant in the big apple. Well, the location itself is amazing with its three floors and I cannot imagine the rent they pay a month.
To go there, you need a solid appetite as the prices are similar to a steakhouse, except that you cannot take home any leftovers (would be interesting to ask them to wrap up some meat to take home...). Fortunately, if you are vegetarian (pure or eating fish), you have options, like the salad bar or the sea bass.
For sure, I skipped the salad bar that was quite big with lots of options, from salads to salumi, and of course fruit that were nicely presented.
What was surprising was the service: rude and inefficient. My friend Abe got his cocktail order wrong twice; the waiters seemed annoyed that I was taking photos (I try to go quick and never use the flash, asking courteously for permission to do it), and they would not follow up when we asked them for something. Weird, because the restaurant was not that busy for a Thursday evening, so it had nothing to do with understaffing from what I observed.
As a start, they served us some pao de quejo that are these small cheese breads that are so addictive.
In terms of meat though, we were there for a treat: their meat is simply delicious: tender, juicy and well cooked (you can ask for the temperature of your choice and they try to accommodate), with very few cheap meats as I would call them, such as chicken or pork. Not only did they have great beef cuts, but they also had lamb, especially these lamb chops that were fantastic. Remember that they give you a chip with two sides: green, so the staff knows they can bring meat, red so they stop bringing more meat.
And I can tell you that the meat comes fast!
I got the following meat:
Leg of lamb:
With the meal comes some sides: mash potatoes, fried polenta sticks and caramelized bananas. The latter were definitely my favorite.
Last was dessert. Smartly, they show you all the desserts they serve and I admit that it is a bit difficult to resist, even after eating so much food.
So I tried: Chocolate cheesecake (just ok, not as dense and tasty as I expected):
Lemon tart (sublime, not too sweet):
Tres leches (my favorite):
With my meal, I decided to keep the Brazilian theme and ordered a caipirinha that was perfect.
This was a nice meal in an amazing decor: I for sure prefer Fogo de Chao to Churascaria Plataforma. Would I go back? Definitely! And if you go, skip the salad bar: it is just a way to make you eat less meat...
Enjoy (I did)!
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