Published on February 11th, 2013 | by admin
3 Must-See Rio de Janeiro Restaurants, from Menumixx.com
BY FABIO DE OLIVEIRA
In an earlier article, Fabio de Oliveira of Menumixx.com highlighted three noteworthy restaurants in São Paulo, Brazil. Now, he casts his gaze toward Rio de Janeiro to offer some mouthwatering recommendations, as well as an update on the many improvements taking place in this legendary metropolis.
The New York Times rated Rio de Janeiro the world’s number one travel destination for 2013. The city’s amazing natural beauty earned it the exclusive status of UNESCO World Heritage Site, the only large city in the world to hold this status in UNESCO’s Urban Cultural Landscape category.
Rio is undergoing an urban renaissance as it prepares to host FIFA’s 2014 World Cup and the 2016 Summer Olympics. Security has vastly improved with the implementation of Police Pacification Units or UPP’s in the city’s favelas. The local government is undertaking widespread infrastructure improvements that include new metro rail lines and dedicated bus rapid transit lanes or BRT’s that will greatly improve the city’s public transportation system. Rio’s international airport is soon to be privatized, and with privatization will come some much needed improvements. Urban renewal projects, including a high-profile multi-billion-dollar revitalization of the city’s dilapidated port area, are underway, and are on schedule to be completed in time for the Olympic games. The new port, dubbed Porto Maravilha, follows in the footsteps of Barcelona’s waterfront revitalization project which was undertaken for the 1992 Summer Olympic games. Porto Maravilha is poised to become Rio’s newest business and entertainment district and one of the legacies of the 2016 games.
The entire city is a buzz in preparation for the games. New Luxury hotels, shopping malls, and entertainment venues are popping up everywhere. Much like the city, the restaurant scene here is also undergoing an evolution. Chefs from other parts of the country as well as from abroad are landing in Rio to open new restaurants. Rio’s new guard of chefs is elevating the city’s food scene and stealing some of the culinary sportlight from Sao Paulo.
Rio de Janeiro Restaurant Guide
Rio-based French chef Claude Troisgros, one of the founding fathers of New Brazilian Cuisine, remains an important figure in the city’s culinary scene. The menu at his flagship restaurant Olympe remains true to his culinary traditions. Diners here can enjoy French-inspired dishes that combine Brazilian ingredients with old-world cooking techniques. Chef Claude’s signature dishes, like his oven-roasted sea bass with brown butter-raisin sauce on a bed of caramelized plantains, are often imitated but never duplicated.
Rua Custódio Serrão, 62 – Jardim Botânico; Rio de Janeiro; Tel: (21) 2539-4542
Cc: A, D, M, V; $$$$
Hours: Mon-Thurs: 19:30h-0:30h • Fri: 12h-16h & 19h30-0h30 • Sat: 19h30-0h30 •
Chef Roberta Sudbrack first took center stage as chef to Brazilian President (now former president) Fernando Enrique Cardozo. Today, she is at the helm of her own award-winning namesake restaurant, Roberta Sudbrack, in Rio’s beautiful Jardim Botânico neighborhood. Chef Roberta’s brand of New Brazilian Cuisine combines tradition with innovation. She focuses on fresh, organic and locally sourced ingredients to create three, five and nine-course tasting menus that highlight uniquely Brazilian ingredients and pay homage to traditionally Brazilian dishes. Her menu changes daily and is subject to what is available fresh at market on any given day. Roberta Sudbrack is the only Rio restaurant to be ranked in Restaurant magazine’s 2012 World’s Best Restaurants list.
Av. Lineu de Paula Machado, 916 – Jardim Botânico; Rio de Janeiro; Tel: (21) 3874-0139
Cc: M; $$$$
Hours: Tues-Thurs: 19h30-0h • Fri: 12h-15h & 20h30-till • Sat: 20h30-till • Sun-Mon: Closed
Molecular gastronomy is alive and well and continues to evolve in Rio de Janeiro. It’s featured prominently at chef Felipe Bronze’s ORO. Chef Felipe’s innovative dishes seamlessly fuse the traditions of Brazilian cooking with techniques of molecular gastronomy. ORO opened in 2010 and in its very first year was awarded the prestigious Veja Rio awards for “Best Contemporary Restaurant” and “Chef of the Year.” During the same year, the highly respected local newspaper, O Globo, bestowed its “Best Restaurant” award to ORO. The restaurant continues to garner accolades and praise and remains at the forefront of the city’s avant-garde dining scene.
Rua Ferei Leandro, 20 – Jardim Botânico; Rio de Janeiro; Tel: (21) 2226-4586/7864-9622
Cc: A, D, M, V; $$$
Hours: Mon-Thurs: 19:30h-0h • Fri-Sat: 19h30-0h30 • Sun: Closed
We hope our brief overview has helped you to have a better understanding of Brazilian cuisine and has inspired you to further explore the country’s amazing food during your travels to Brazil. For more information on the above restaurants and other restaurants in Brazil, please visit menumixx.com. Bom Apetite!
The idea for Menumixx.com came from personal experience, according to de Oliveira, who is based in both Rio de Janeiro and Miami. “Quite often, I would be dining in Brazil, with non-Portuguese speaking friends visiting from abroad, and I would find myself spending a good part of the evening verbally translating menus,” he explains. “Of course it was convenient for my friends to have a native speaker with them who could explain the menus but what about those visitors who didn’t have that luxury? We felt this was a niche that needed to be filled especially in a country that is expecting a huge influx of tourists in the coming years when it hosts the 2014 World Cup and 2016 Summer Olympics.”