Three guys heading to Rio - any restaurant advice is appreciated!
We are arriving in Rio on a Wednesday and departing on a Sunday. That gives us 4 nights for dinners. We are three men (all 38-40) who enjoy a fun scene and a great time. If a particular restaurant is better on a particular day of the week then let us know!
Some places that I have been and enjoyed are:
- Sushi Leblon
- Porcao (the original near sugarloaf)
- Braz (Jardin Botanico)
- Via Sete
- Alessandro & Frederico
- Fornera Sao Sebastiano
Others I have heard of and would like to try are:
- Manekineko (most likely the Ipanema location - unless any of you would say Leblon is better)
- Porcao (Ipanema)
What do you Rio diners think? For instance, would you recommend Manekinko over Sushi Leblon? Stravaganze over Braz? Celeiro over Frontera? Any other suggestions all together???
Any suggestions or comments are greatly appreciated!
From your above list I do like Fronteira, Porcao, Braz and Alessandro & Frederico.
I used to love Stravaganze but in my opinion went downhill. The pizzas at Braz and at Capricciosa are much better.
The best Porcao in my opition is at Aterro, so I would go there unless it is much moe convenient to go in Ipanema. In the end there is not too much difference in my opinion.
Another place that I like very much for Lunch is Gula-Gula (especially for the desserts, if you have a sweet tooth, the petit-gateau de doce de leite is amazing). But Celeiro is also a good option for lunch.
I also like Julius Brasserie at Avenida Portugal, Urca. It's out of the beaten path but I like the view and the food. It is not a big scene place, though. Next door to Julius Brasserie is Belmonte which is a bit more of a scene, people go for beer and salgadinhos (Brazilian savory snacks, the chicken pie (empadinha) is very good).
Another good option for lunch is a juice stand. Although not a sit down meal, juices are amazing in Brazil. I like Polis Sucos in Ipanema at Maria Quiteria Street. The sandwiches are quite good too.
I would definately recommend that you try local food instead of going to sushi places in Rio - there is not a big variety of fish nor the rice is worth eating. I always go to NY for my sushi fix - and mind you I am Japanese/Brazilian so I know what real sushi is.
The only places from your list that I go is Porcão(the location at Aterro do Flamengo is not the original location but the most famous for having the view of the Sugarloaf...btw, go during the day when you have a better view, and you can also enjoy the all-you-can-eat barbecue more) and Bráz(pizza place from São Paulo - try the Black draft beer, pizza Toscana with boar sausage, picnic, brigadeiro de colher...).
If you insist in eating sushi in Rio, I prefer Sushi Leblon over Manekineko (but I think it is more expensive, though). I think Manekineko Leblon is a little better than the one in Ipanema, but I know for sure that the Ipanema location has all-you-can-eat sushi (not sure about the Leblon location)
Bráz is way better than Stravaganze in my opinion, but it also depends on what kind of dough you prefer (thicker and flavorful dough at Bráz, thin on the other one; larger - you can split in two flavors, or individual sized on the latter). If not Bráz, I prefer Mamma Jamma for thin crust pizza, cut in small slices suggested to be eaten by hand, artisanal dough - choose the house named pizza Mamma Jamma).
Celeiro has better food than Frontera... again, it is more expensive too.
I would suggest the following places in the Ipanema/Leblon area where I think you will be staying - except for Bráz and Porcão Rio's, all your choices are in that area...
Astor - in front of the Ipanema beach @ Rainha Elizabete, it has great drinks and quite a few good appetizers.
Bar d'Hotel - in front of the Leblon beach @ Bartolomeu Mitre, on the second floor of the Marina Hotel. Great drinks and good food.
Zuka (across the street from Sushi Leblon, and from the same owners) - for picanha burger, the tuna with palm of hearts "pasta", ovos moles dessert. their food is quite good.
Chico & Alaíde - Leblon at corner of Bartolomeu Mitre & Dias Ferreira - caipirinhas & ice cold chopps and lots of appetizers (do not miss out on bolinho de tutu, choquinho, and other individual appetizers)
Academia da Cachaça - Conde de Bernadote, Leblon - try their cachaças, drinks made with cachaças, eat escondidinho, heart of palms na brasa http://www.academiadacachaca.com.br/c...
If you are willing to venture away from that neighborhood, check my other posts...