Rio de Janeiro is full of fine dining options – from French bistros, to traditional churrascarias, there is sure to be something that will strike your palette. Here are some of the top restaurants in Rio that highlight the country’s culinary diversity.
Espírito Santa (Brazilian)
Espírito Santa is set in a beautifully restored mansion in Santa Teresa. Take a seat on the back terrace with its sweeping views or inside the charming, airy dining room, and feast on rich, expertly prepared meat and seafood dishes from the Amazon and the northeast.
Azul Marinho (Seafood)
One of Rio’s top chefs, Claude Troisgros, and his son Thomas, dazzle guests with unforgettable meals at this award-winning restaurant set in a peaceful villa on a sleepy, tree-lined street. Originally from France, Troisgros mixes the old world with the new in dishes like duck with passion fruit, endive and foie gras or shrimp risotto with white truffle oil and mushroom foam.
Zazá Bistrô Tropical (Fusion)
Inside an art-filled and whimsically decorated converted house, Zazá serves beautifully prepared dishes with Asian accents, and uses organic ingredients when possible. Recent favorites include grilled squid and octopus with wild rice and lemon confit, flambéed prawns with risotto and grilled namorado served with caramelized plantains.
Le Pré Catelan (French-Brazilian)
Inspired French-Brazilian fusion are the hallmarks of this modern restaurant. Award-winning chef Roland Villard has created tasting menus along with fantastic dishes like his famous ‘Trilogies’, where snails and shellfish are given three exquisite treatments. Seafood is the house speciality and it is always combined with organic Brazilian seasonings.
Zuka (Charcoal Grill)
Contemporary cuisine, rustically cooked with charcoal grills. The creative chef Ludmilla Soeiro prepares dishes of meat, fish, vegetables and seafood. Exoctic dishes like exotic dishes Thai fish wrapped in a banana leaf and meaty namorado in a foie gras sauce are offered along with more traditional dishes like the house burger and lamb. Has daily specials and a full wine list.