19 millions inhabitants, 13.000+ restaurants, 15.000 bars. The figures talk for themselves: Sao Paolo is a monster city that can easily intimidate travellers. But it’s an excellent destination that gourmets should not miss during their visit to Brazil.
Thanks to my dear brazilian friend Regina, I discovered a trendy, sophisticated and hipster Sao Paolo that delights even the pickiest gourmets. For those who aren’t lucky enough to have a brazilian friend -get one!-, I am sharing a few local secrets…
Where to eat in Sao Paulo
Meat fest at a churrascaria
Argentinians are far from being the only ones claiming they have the best meat in the world. For the carnivores, Sao Paolo is a little paradise with hundreds of churrascaria. One of sure value is Vento Haragano, offering a “all you can eat” buffet, for R$120. In an authentic setting, the waiters dressed in folkloric outfits come and go, offering dozens of different perfectly cooked meats to try. This is a dangerous place for your tummy, don´t forget to use the red sticker to indicate you are temporary taking a meat break!
Delights of the North
The north of Brazil is well known for its gastronomy, and a stop at restaurant Consultado do Bahia will make your palate travel. It´s a great way to try out baiao de dois or acaraje without leaving town. Portions are huge, order only 1 for 2. Pinheiros, R. dos Pinheiros, 534.
Fish, for a change
Peixera Bar e Venta bar and restaurant offers a great alternative for those tired of so much meat. This fish shop hosts a bar where caipirinha are served in marmalade pots, and a restaurant where you can pick any fish to be cooked for you. It’s located in the classic partying neighbourhood, Vila Madalena (Rua Inacio Pereira Da Rocha, 112).
Ice cream paradise
In Pinheros area, the ice cream factory Frida e Mina offers delicious home made ice creams, as proven by the line outside on sunny days. Rua Artur de Azevedo 1147. Closed on Sunday, more info on their webpage.
“Trailer de comida” (food truck) trend
Like in many american or european cities, the food truck trend has invaded the city of Sao Paulo. On week-ends and even on week days, a dozen of trucks gather in different parts of town, in a festive ambiance. Forget the basic hotdog: if hamburgers remains a favorite, the offer can range from delicate macarons to sushis or cakes. Join the party! Every Sunday on Praça Benedito Calixto Panela Na Rua delights you from 12pm. You can also find 4 other addresses on this page.
For (too) long brazilians have been limited to drink only local beer or expensive, canned, low quality ones. But this is starting to change. Crowds of young actives hurry up in these bars of a new type to taste classics or microbrewer beers from all around the world. We tried these three addresses, perfect to quench your thirst:
- Cervejaria Santa Therezinha is located in the classic Mercado Central. Next to meat or fruits counter, you can buy beers to enjoy on spot or to bring home. (website of the Mercado).
- Delirium Cafe, far from serving only the Delirium beer, this bar offers more than 200 different foreigner beers, many of them on the tap.
- Cervejaria Nacional: a nice bar where I recommend the tasting of their 5 home brewed beers (blond, red, dark… there are for all tastes).
Note: All places mentioned correspond to a mid range budget, not always cheap but of sure value (I personally tested all of them)!
Many thanks to my friend Regina for sharing her favorite spots with us!