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From Our Editors
Rafain has come a long way—literally. The Brazilian steakhouse currently occupies space in Dallas and Fort Worth, but it actually originated in southern Brazil in 1959. So when Olimpio and Philomena Rafain decided to open a churrascaria in America, they were simply continuing the family business. As a result, diners are guaranteed an authentic experience.
- It’s a meat-lover’s paradise: “You need to like meat to thoroughly enjoy the experience here,” as DFW.com put it. In line with its authentic spirit, Rafain's menu features 17 cuts of meat cooked over an open charcoal pit, including the original spicy picanha, pork ribs, and bacon-wrapped filets. Gaucho servers present each meat on a long skewer, cutting portions onto diners’ plates.
- You can sink your teeth into more than meat, though: The salad bar is stocked with upwards of 45 different gourmet selections, including a light calamari salad, Brazilian-style potato salad, and a vegetable mélange with bell peppers, asparagus, green beans, grilled onions, and baby portobello mushrooms. Those with room for dessert can enjoy specialties like affogato, crème brûlée, or papaya cream, which blends fresh papaya with vanilla bean ice cream before topping it with crème de cassis.
- The libations are just as authentic as the cuisine: To drink, guests have a choice of mixed drinks, such as the traditional Brazilian "Caipirinha," a mojito-esque mixed drink fusing the sugarcane-based liquor cachaca with lime, sugar, and ice. Alternatively, they can order a glass of wine from an impressive 15-page list, which has been recognized with a Wine Spectator Award of Excellence since 2009. Rafain also earned its spot as one of OpenTable’s Top 100 Restaurants in America in 2014.