The first European explorers set sail with hopes of finding new, exotic spices to placate the palates of epicurious monarchs, but all they found were heaps of inedible gold. Pick up where they left off by broadening your mouth's horizons with today's Groupon: for $25, you get $50 worth of authentic Brazilian fare and drinks at The Grille from Ipanema in Coeur d'Alene, Idaho.
The Grille from Ipanema, featured in the Spokesman Review, hosts a staff of culinary craftsmen that grill the more than 10 types of meats on its menu over mesquite coals. Top sirloin, garlic steak, brazilian sausage, and chicken-wrapped bacon arrive at the table churrasco-style⎯hand-sliced tableside from the skewer ($24.99 for full churrasco dinner) and more tender than a sheltered bunny rabbit's dreams. An unlimited salad bar stocked with salads, vegetables, and typical Brazilian cuisine such as beans, rice, and fried bananas ($16.99 for salad bar only), accompanies each meaty selection. Diners can also test out recently sharped incisors on house specialties such as grilled pineapple and scallops encased with a savory sheath of bacon ($9.99).
The airy and vibrant dining room at The Grille from Ipanema proffers a lakeside view and a slew of desserts and drinks with which to pair mouthwatering meals. The Brazilian lemonade blends condensed milk, fresh limes, and sugar ($3.75), whereas a variety of beers on tap, blended fruit drinks, and wines by the glass or bottle help wash down savory flavors.
Grille from Ipanema
Grille from Ipanema, which takes its name from a beach along Rio de Janeiro's picturesque coastline, also draws inspiration from the Brazilian churrasco experience. This type of dining stems from the gaucho tradition of gathering around a fire pit and roasting skewers of meat over the flames.
The eatery’s chefs re-create this experience by searing skewers of more than 18 different meats—including top sirloin, pork shoulder, and bacon-wrapped chicken—over a mesquite-filled grill. They then hand the large meat skewers off to servers, who drift throughout the dining room looking for green tokens, which signal that the diner requires more meat. After they’re called tableside, the servers carve the meat into individually sized portions with their industrial-strength laser pointers. By flipping their coasters from green to yellow, guests tell servers to temporarily stop the never-ending meat deliveries, buying themselves time to visit the salad bar and load plates with hot and cold side dishes.
Natural light floods in through the walls of windows, illuminating the dining room's blond-wood finishes and draped fabrics. The Pacific Northwest Inlander praised the restaurant's scenic vantage point in 2011, saying, "you won’t get a view of the Rio de Janeiro beachfront but you will get an eyeful of still-impressive Lake Coeur d’Alene."
601 Front Ave.
Coeur d'Alene, Idaho 83814