Head chef Valerie Rebellato combines her Brazilian origins with her love for its food in Cafe Paulista Grille’s made-from-scratch menu and its amenable atmosphere. Several meaty entrees encourage sharing, with large portions and a surfeit of sides such as fried banana, feijoada, and rice. Mix up beef and poultry with the Espetinho Caipira for Two, a vision of skewered sirloin and chicken breast ($27.99), among other skewered entree delights. Indecisive or surprise-loving diners can take a gustatory leap and leave their fate in Val’s deft hands, which will cook up whatever’s on her mind (except anything personally allergenic) ($8.99). Wash a meal down with a surfeit of exotic juice combinations ($3.69) featuring aliments such as cashew fruit, acai, and mango, or sip the strong house coffee ($1.99) with a rich, caramel fried banana ($2.99) or brazilian tiramisu ($4.99).
Voted Best of the Upstate 2010 for steak by Greenville News readers, Saskatoon transports rugged hungers to a Northwest-style lodge where a Groupon-exclusive specialty menu of five exquisitely prepared courses awaits them. The nutty acorn squash ravioli glints with brown butter and primes salivary glands with spiced pecans, ushering in a crunchy choir of vinaigrette-soaked heirloom tomatoes and arugula. Next, a parmesan-capped buffalo-sausage flatbread thunders out of the kitchen saddled by whooping braised fennel and the smoky flavor of wood-fired tomatoes. Choose from three entrees—grilled antelope loin in blackberry demi, crispy skin salmon with truffle-mushroom risotto, and hanger steak in chasseur sauce—each of which lend the main course a much safer interactive component than BYO-blowfish barbecues. For the rousing dessert finale, choose again between Canadian-whiskey bread pudding, Bailey's white-chocolate cheesecake, or creamy chocolate-mousse pie.