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Rio de Janeiro.... recs in Barra da Tijuca and Santa Teresa?

t
tamarindo Nov 16, 2008 09:51 AM

Hello- I will be traveling solo to Rio for 10 days over Thanksgiving. I've reviewed helpful past threads, but haven't found much about restaurants in Barra (where I'll be staying for the first week for work reasons) or Santa Teresa (where I'll spend the last 3 days). If anyone has any recommendations, please let me know. I'm more interested in inexpensive places that don't cater to tourists. Thanks in advance for any help!

  1. streetgourmetla Nov 16, 2008 01:22 PM

    In Barra-Barra Grill(churrasco),Capricciosa(pizza),Academia da Cachaca(cachaca and traditional Brazilian)

    Santa Tereza-Espirito Santa(Brazilian),Aprazivel(haute cuisine from Minas Gerais chef),Bar do Mineiro(local Brazilian w/cachaca, was good enough for Anthony Bourdain)

    Well, I would say to not limit yourself, the exchange rate isn't bad right now.None of the restaurants mentioned by myself,Aledm, Cariorker,Toot,or Mpierce64 are catering to tourists, with the exception of Casa da Feioada.You will do well in your neighborhoods looking for local lanchonetes, which is a favorite venue of mine and places for sucos, chopperias, and bares.But, bus transportation is easy and inexpensive,wanna go to Barra, get on the bus that says Barra,etc.,so try and get around.Subways, easy and efficient!Barra is not an inexpensive neighborhood but it's not far from Ipanema/Copa,Santa Teresa is very close to downtown.

    A Mineira is a buffet restaurant featuring Minas Gerais cuisine, one of my favorites in Sao Paulo, cheap,outstanding and plentiful.

    Wasn't quite clear what you were looking for as non-touristy and cheap leaves a lot of territory, so I thought I'd steer you this way.Also, it would be great to hear if you went to these places and report your finds.Many take reccs and we never hear back.

    1. p
      pkafka Nov 20, 2008 06:52 AM

      Shirley is an awesome seafood place - actually feels like Spain - small and intimate, classic menu! go for it

      -pk, theculturephile.com

      1. Toot Nov 21, 2008 02:23 PM

        Bar do Arnaudo in Santa Teresa has been around forever, it serves food from the Northeast of Brazil. I haven't been in a long time but it used to be good and it's the kind of food you won't get outside Brazil. Aprazivel is supposed to be really nice, but I haven't been there yet.

        Barra is huge and has so many options. BarraShopping (one of Barra malls) has actually pretty good options. Don't worry that it's a mall, the food in Brazilian malls are quite different than the food court in the US, you can find many upscale restaurants in the malls.
        Bar do Osvaldo is another traditional place in Barra where people go for batidas (drinks with cachaca and fruit juice). But it's a bar, they don't have meals, just some tapas.
        Fratteli, Enotri are good Italian places also in Barra.
        A little piece of advice, I wouldn't take a bus to Barra... (and I am from Rio).

        1. Toot Nov 21, 2008 02:26 PM

          Bar do Arnaudo in Santa Teresa has been around forever, it serves food from the Northeast of Brazil. I haven't been in a long time but it used to be good and it's the kind of food you won't get outside Brazil. Aprazivel is supposed to be really nice, but I haven't been there yet.

          Barra is huge and has so many options. BarraShopping (one of Barra malls) has actually pretty good options. Don't worry that it's a mall, the food in Brazilian malls are quite different than the food court in the US, you can find many upscale restaurants in the malls.
          Bar do Osvaldo is another traditional place in Barra where people go for batidas (drinks with cachaca and fruit juice). But it's a bar, they don't have meals, just some tapas.
          Fratteli, Enotri are good Italian places also in Barra.
          A little piece of advice, I wouldn't take a bus to Barra... (and I am from Rio).

          6 Replies
          1. re: Toot
            streetgourmetla Nov 23, 2008 07:36 PM

            Hey Toot.I took buses to Barra and back.I'm curious why you wouldn't recommend this.Is it the favelas in between Leblon and Barra, like Rocinha and a bunch of others?I concur with Barra shopping, excellent food options, as there are all over Rio.

            1. re: streetgourmetla
              Toot Dec 1, 2008 01:38 PM

              Buses are ok if yor are going to the beach and not carrying anything with you. If you are dressed to go out, carrying money in your wallet I would avoid buses. People get mugget in buses, which doesn't happen in the subway or in taxis. Both subway (during the day) and taxis are pretty safe in Rio.

              1. re: Toot
                streetgourmetla Dec 1, 2008 05:49 PM

                I had no problem with the buses, but I do blend in and speak portuguese.I even did it at night, Sao Paulo too.I was aware which neighborhoods I would be going through, and always dressed accordingly, simple, money belt with small amount of cash in pocket,cc's in money belt.

                Subways are a great option too, I took them all over Sampa.Taxis are an affordable option at the moment with the current exchange rate, just be aware of bandeira 1 and bandeira 2! One guy tried to hit me with the higher rate, my Paulista wife and I were speaking in english, when she asked him why he had bandeira 2 at 7PM(I believe that was the time)he about wet himself out of shame, never heard someone apologize and stutter so much.Bem feito!

                1. re: Toot
                  c oliver Dec 22, 2008 07:33 PM

                  We took buses all over Rio, including Barra, for 3-1/2 months last year. All day time however. But NO problem. Actually beyond no problem. Everyone, including the driver, were very helpful. And my Portuguese is SO sucky :)

                  1. re: c oliver
                    streetgourmetla Dec 23, 2008 12:18 AM

                    Awesome, so I'm not crazy.I had no problems either.I'm actually addicted to public transportation in Brazil.

                    1. re: streetgourmetla
                      c oliver Dec 23, 2008 06:32 AM

                      And it's so easy. Unlike in the U.S. all you have to do in Rio is look at the signs on the front of the bus and you can figure out what to take. We also bought a book that gave ALL the bus lines. And the subway is great too.

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