I’m a pretty big fan of the Brazilian churrascaria. I enjoy the passadors coming around with their gigantic skewers of meat and offering you a slice. Rambo and I went to the one here in Glasgow, Viva Brazil.
They give you a handy sheet that lists all of the meats in Portuguese and in English. The passadors stamp each meat as they come by. When you’re ready for the passadors to start bringing you skewers of meat, you flip over the card to show the green side that says Sim, Por favor meaning Yes, please in English!
You start off the experience by picking up your plate and getting yummy side dishes at the “salad” bar, which is also where they have feijoada (a black bean and meat stew eaten over a bed of rice), a few random meat dishes and the carbs like sweet potato fries or grilled polenta. And most importantly, pão de queijo. My advice is not to go crazy at the salad bar. You’ve got a lot of skewers of meat coming your way!
I don’t know if you’ve heard of pão de queijo (Pow deh Kay-zho) but it’s everything your dreams are made of.
It’s a tiny ball of bread that is filled with cheese.
My all time favourite meat is the Pescoço de Porco (Parmesan crusted pork). It’s so tender and juicy and has cheese on top! Where can you go wrong?
I really like the linguiça which is a phenomenal sausage. It is very rich in flavour!
I’m also a big fan of the presunto defumado (smoked ham or gammon as they call it here in the UK)
Rambo’s favourite of all time is picanha (cap of rump). He fell in love with it in Brazil a few years ago and cannot say no! I’m not entirely sure how they do it, but it is a crazy tender piece of beef.
But they make it even better and cover that sucker in garlic for picanha com alho. And that is what I’m talking about.
They also have frango com pimenta (chili chicken). It always surprises me with how spicy it is. But in a good way. Not a melt your face off way. When she came around with that she also gave us the coxa de frango (chicken leg). Which was tasty, but a little lacklustre in comparison to the chili chicken.
There were costela de boi (beef ribs) which we had thought was one of highlights. Until she brought around the next skewer!
*drumroll* Costela de porco (pork ribs)! These were so tender and juicy. It was absolutely delicious. The fat on the outside had gone wonderfully crisp like crackling. I nearly asked her to come back and just leave the skewer with us!
I am not the biggest fan of sirloin, especially when it’s this well-done. So the contra-filé wasn’t among my favourites of the day.
A bit of a shock for me, as I was pretty tired of eating cow by this point, the fraldinha (flank steak) was absolutely phenomenal. It was beautifully tender and juicy and amazing.
Being the foundation of the picanha, the alcatra (rump steak) was pretty great. It was ever so slightly less tender than the picanha, but still received top marks!
This was honestly my least favourite, coração. The chicken hearts are very dense. And they have this very….offal-ly taste. As Rambo told me, “They taste pretty offal“.
A fun little dessert option that they have is abacaxi (ABBA-kah-shee) which is grilled pineapple with cinnamon on the outside. So sweet and tasty! Rambo like pineapple all the time in any way, but I don’t like it as much. But the grilling of it releases all of the delicious sugars!
We missed out on the Frango com Bacon (Chicken with bacon), which is another of my least favourites. It’s just not as amazing as the rest of things. We also missed out on the Pão de Alho (Roast garlic bread) because it came around so close to the end, and we were having to prioritise. I didn’t get the cordeiro (leg of lamb) because I’m just not a huge fan of lamb – but Rambo did and he really enjoyed it. “It was very tender and juicy!”
If at any point you get overloaded with meat and need a break, or you just cannot eat another piece, just turn your card over to say Não obrigdado (No thanks)! Then the passadors stop coming round to your table and offering you more.
This is definitely not the kind of dining experience for someone in a rush. We took well over an hour and a half here.
Viva Brazil is located at 91 Bothwell Street, G2 7AA. We arrived shortly after 6pm on a Tuesday, and by the time we left at 7:45, the place was nearly full. So booking a table would be a good idea if you want to eat later in the day (or at the weekend). The prices vary depending on when you go, but for a weekday dinner it was £25 per person. Given the amount of meat on offer, I think it’s a pretty good deal!
Have you been to a churrascaria or rodizio?