Rio de Janeiro is not known for its food, but there are some really tasty and cost effective restaurants in Copacabana. |DineWithDani
When I traveled to Rio de Janeiro for Carnaval 2018, I stayed in Copacabana. I typcially ate in that neighborhood for convenience. Rio de Janeiro is not known for its food, however there are some really tasty and cost effective options in Copacabana.
Por kilo buffets are a dime a dozen in Rio de Janeiro. Por kilos are restaurants that charge you based on how much your food weighs. The menus of por kilos all overlap in one way or another. Finding one that serves all your favorite things cooked well is the challenge. Temperarte was that place for me. Close to the apartment in Copacabana, well priced, tasty and clean. Every day they had baked fish, roasted chicken, steak, feijao, shredded beets, aipo e aipim, potato salad and so much more. Our Brazilian friends always laughed at how much I would eat. NOTE: If you’re hungry, ask them how much for all-you-can-eat. It costs slightly more, but it will save you money if you think you’ll want to get more than one plate of food.
The restaurant appears to be Don Quixote themed (I could be wrong), but the menu is not. They are known for their sandwiches, yet I found the other items on the menu to be just as appealing. One of my favorite things about the restaurant is that, despite the casually dressed clientele, the servers are dressed traditionally in white jackets and there are no cell phones allowed. Guests must interact with one another. The other thing that came to endear the place to me is that it is open late– even on Wednesday, when seemingly everything in Copacabana closes early. NOTE: I have a new found respect for beef and pineapple served together on one sandwich.
(3) Galeto Sat’s
Anthony Bourdain put this on my radar. He called it the perfect place to eat after a night of drinking in Rio de Janeiro. My first visit in 2014 was midday and I was underwhelmed. The food wasn’t great, but it wasn’t mindblowing either. I finally got around to visiting in 2018, after an amazing night of pagode, club hopping and dancing in the streets of Lapa. On the way I had to dodge a potential attacker, but with the help of a newsstand worker I made it safely to Galeto Sat’s and saw the huge crowd. I knew that late night must really be the time to go. Surprisingly, the picanha with onions and farofa served with ice cold beer was exactly what I needed. I can’t wait to go back.
(4) Bar do David
Be very clear, this place is not exactly in Leme. It is firmly established in a favela at the back of Leme. But many asphalt dwellers (middle class people) gladly make their way up the hill (into the favela) for this hidden gem. International celebrities and politicians have been to Bar do David for the amazing cuisine. Its not just your run of the mill bar or boteco. This place is gourmet. Beautiful seafood, juicy ribs, wildly tantilzing cachacas and more make this place special– along with David’s bright personality. I hope to get a group together next time and make an evening of it. Note: You can walk it, but I advise taking a mototaxi up the hill if one is available.
(5) Crack dos Galetos
Like any other chicken restaurant, this place has a straight forward menu. You’re going to want to get a whole bird and two or more sides depending on how many people you’re eating with. It is super casual and loud. If you’re in the neighborhood (Copacabana, Rio de Janeiro) and really want to eat something fast, tasty and cheap– stop here. NOTE: The space is not made for groups as it only has counter seating.
For more recommendations, see my earlier post: Where to Eat in Rio de Janeiro pt 1.