A few weekends back, actually, our anniversary weekend, hubby and I thought we’d try a new restaurant in town – Braza Brazilian Steak House. It smells delicious as you walk by with all the barbecued meat aromas wafting out the door, so it’s enticing before you even step inside!
Braza is an authentic Brazilian steakhouse serving various barbecued meats, sliced straight from the skewer to your plate by one of their Passadores (carvers).
From Braza’s website, explaining the history…
In the 1800′s Europeans immigrants settled in the south of Brazil. They were strong and skilful people who treasured and nurtured the land and quickly become adept at raising and herding cattle.
They became known as Gauchos. A unique type of cooking, called churrasco (Shoo-rhas’co) was inspired by those ranchers. They would gather together and start a wood burning fire, once the fire turned into golden ember, large portions of prime meat were skewered and slowly cooked to perfection. Using conventional knives, which they wore on their belts, they sliced thin and succulent pieces of meat in succession on each person’s plates.
We visited on a Sunday afternoon and it wasn’t too busy. We were sat by the window and asked if we had been before, which we hadn’t. It was explained how the carvers walk around the restaurant serving the meat to you, but if you don’t want any, to turn over your coaster to say “no” and you would be skipped over, until you turned it back to say “yes”. On a Sunday the cost of the buffet is £18.99 per person – this includes unlimited barbecue, salads from the salad bar, as well as a selection of hot dishes from a buffet. Drinks are extra, as are desserts.
We ordered a couple of cocktails each – it was our anniversary after all! I ordered Sex on Copacabana – yummy! Hubs actually ordered non-alcoholic as he was driving. I can’t remember what his was, but I know it had ginger in it.
With our coasters turned over to ‘yes’, it wasn’t long before a passadore came over and gave us our first portion of meat – some homemade sausage called linguica. You get small portions, but I’m sure you could probably ask for more if you wanted. To be fair, I prefer that because you can then have a little bit of everything without feeling so stuffed!
We took ourselves up to the salad bar and hot buffet to see what was available. There were various salads including – pasta, cous cous, garden, tomato, coleslaw and mushroom, all presented nicely and looked appetising.
I wasn’t sure what a lot of the stuff on the hot buffet was – could have done with some labels really – at one point, there was a waiter hovering around and I asked him what was what! Hot dishes included rice, ribs, meatballs, garlic mushrooms and vegetable gratin – about 16-20 dishes? There were also some dipping sauces you could help yourself to.
We came back to our table, just as the carver was passing by with some chicken, and then we just sat back and enjoyed our lunch; periodically, more meat would be carved for us. Between serving, they passadores would take the skewers of meat back to the barbecue, so each time you were served, the meat was lovely and charred on the outside.
The passadores were really friendly, and I can imagine when the restaurant is busier, that there is quite an atmosphere in there! By now I was over-loaded with meat on my plate, so turned my coaster over to ‘no’, but hubs kept the food coming! He likes to get his money’s worth when we dine out!!
There were several delicious meats that we tried – my favourite was the rump steak which was cooked to perfection, and so juicy and flavourful.
These are the other meats that Braza serve (taken from their website.)
- Picanha (Rump cap): Most tender part of Rump. Very popular in Brazilian restaurants. Served with just rock salt or with garlic butter.
- Alcatra (Rump): Also very popular cut in Brazil. Expertly grilled to succulent perfection.
- Maminha (Brazilian cut): Traditional cut and slowly spit roasted to perfection.
- Fraldinha (Bottom Sirloin): Strong marbling characteristics, Uncomparable. Very distinctive and falvourful cut from Brazil.
- Costela de Boi (Beef ribs): juicy ribs of beef slowly cooked to preserve rich flavour.
- Cordeiro (Lamb): Our Gaucho chefs prepare whole legs of lamb with Olive oil, Rosemary…Perfect lamb.
- Frango (Chicken): Breast wrapped on bacon, thighs, legss and chicken hearts. Using very traditional marinates…spicy, garlic butter and many more.
- Linguica (Homemade sausage): Homemade, succulent and delicious pork sausage, smoked sausage, chicken sausage, beef sausage…using special Brazilian mix of spices, will complement your “Churrasco” experience.
Eventually, we were too stuffed for any more, so both coasters were turned to ‘no’! However, we always manage to find space for dessert :P The waiter brought out a selection of desserts to show us – akin to an old fashioned dessert trolley. We could choose from
- Pudim de Leite (Cream Caramel)
- Quindim (Coconut Pudding)
- Brigadeirao (Rich Chocolate Mousse)
- Selection of mousses (Mango, passion fruit, Strawberry and Chocolate)
I chose Pudim de Leite, and hubs went for the Brigadeirao…or was it the other way around? Either way, we ended up sharing, and both were very creamy and delicious!
We thoroughly enjoyed our meal and experience at Braza Brazilian Steak House, Romford, Essex and would certainly go back there for another meal – maybe take a few friends as it’s a great restaurant to socialise in! If you’re looking for something different, then I recommend giving Braza a try :)