In parts of Brazil, families and friends come together during a centuries-old tradition called churrasco. At these festive barbecue-style gatherings, hosts cook enormous amounts of food, and guests eat until they're stuffed. Inspired by that tradition, Elaine Lima opened Brazil Grill with a similar vision in mind. Here, the grill runs all day, rolling out an assortment of juicy meats that includes pork loin, ribs, lamb, and top sirloin presented in a colorful buffet alongside vegetables and other Brazilian-style sides. It's a simple setup that makes guests feel as at home as they would at their own friend's barbecue.
CW's American menu?which features locally sourced seafood and thick-cut steaks?combines the comforting nostalgia of classic Americana with contemporary cooking techniques. Their modern methods include rubbing each cut of meat with a proprietary blend of spices before broiling them at 1,200 degrees Fahrenheit to seal in juices. When possible, the chefs source their seasonally changing ingredients from local businesses to encourage the local economy and give their wheelbarrow driver a break.
An unlimited parade of palate-pleasing platters greets diners from Churrascaria Braza's Rodizio prix fixe dinner menu, a tasty Brazilian steakhouse tradition ($29.95 adults, $14.95 children under 12). Fill your digestive Trapper Keeper with loose-leaf lusciousness from the stacked salad bar, or cast a tongue trap to reel in a haul of the peel-and-eat shrimp. When you're sufficiently appetized, a friendly tableside server commences the main protein procession, carefully and continuously slicing as much of the seasoned, slow-roasted, and skewered meats as you desire. The assortment of 12 meats changes nightly, yielding such savory selections as the roasted pork loin, bacon-wrapped filet mignon, or Perna de Carneiro (freshly sliced leg of lamb). When you're nearly full, flip the table's circular dual-sided chip from green to red, which signifies the start of dessert. Hang a sweet fang on the decadent layer cake ($7) or spongy and succulent tres leches cake ($7).
The recipes used in the kitchen at Ipanema Cafe are the creation of Chef Nelson Diorio, whose skills were honed at the Quinnipiac Culinary Arts School. The bar and restaurant serves patrons classic Brazilian and Portuguese dishes, such as hearty stews, bowls of soup, and fish galore.
Casona Restaurant Bar & Lounge combines Latin cuisine with nights of dancing within its mood-lit space. The menu offers dishes from five different Latin American and Caribbean countries, all complemented by a drink list with mojitos, margaritas, and martinis. Different events occur every night the restaurant is open, often including salsa and Zumba lessons, open mics, and live Latin jazz.
Patrons shouldn't be fooled by the sleek white and grey exterior of Sakura Garden?there's plenty of color inside. Through the doors, blossoming pink cherry trees mark a path to the dining room, where a sea-blue glass ceiling hints at the variety of oceanic fare served up at the all-you-can eat buffet. Here, wall-mounted fish provide pairing suggestions as diners dish up hot items such as steamed snow crab legs and teriyaki salmon, as well as cold options such as shrimp cocktails. Seafood also reigns supreme at the sushi bar, where chefs slice sashimi and create rolls fresh to order. After guests have filled their plates, they continue on to the softly-lit dining room, where red lights cast a glow on murals depicting misty, pastoral vistas.
A full bar offers Japanese beer and a selection of sake, and a private room is available for events and special occasions. The buffet is closed from 3 p.m. to 5 p.m. and happy hour runs from 3:30 p.m. to 7 p.m.
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