Tabocas Steak House in Lowell
This little spot overlooking the river in Lowell has gone through about 6 ownerships/Brazilian restaurant themes in 10 years, but it has been reborn as a classy Churrascaria called Tabocas. The place has been extensively renovated and looks great inside. Apparently, there is a lounge downstairs and they plan on having live music (light jazz, I think, not Brazilian dance music). They have a rodizio at lunch and dinner to go along with a fresh extensive buffet. The meats were grilled to perfection and were not nearly as salty as some places I've been to. I sampled rib eye, prime rib, filet w/ bacon, chicken w/ bacon, pork sausage, chicken hearts, and lamb. You could easily get by with just the buffet, as they have about 9 hot dishes, including the obligatory feijoada, to go along with the many sides of veggies and carbs. We were there for a work lunch and didn't partake, but it looked like they had a nice wine selection, too. I'm not sure why so many places failed here, but most of the time they appeared to be chow lines for local Brazilian workers, who sat and watched soap operas or soccer on a big screen TV while they ate. I hope the slightly upscale effort works here, and I plan on spreading the word when I can.
We finally made it to Tabocas. Loved it!!! Food and service was fantastic. The meats were grilled perfectly, they even give you a choice of doneness (coming back with a rare prime rib), bacon wrapped filet was fantastic. Nothing dry, seasoned perfectly (not too salty as some we're been to). We loved the hot bar, especially the rice/beans. Salad bar was always a nice variety of vegies/fruit/pasta salad/potato salad, etc. Dessert was fantastic, authentic Brazillian Flan. We certainly ate wayyyy too much but we really enjoyed it. Service was outstanding.
The only slightly negative thing I would say is the ambiance is lacking just a bit - I loved the decour but tables were close and was a bit loud. People were all very warm, just the ambiance was cool (not temp).
Can't wait to go back. I love haven't different things to eat in one sitting rather then ordering one dish/meal.