Side Trips from Rio Restaurants

The food here is nothing if not eclectic. Expect to find sushi bars, Italian restaurants, and German biergartens sitting alongside restaurants selling typical Brazilian cuisine. Coastal towns serve a large selection of fresh seafood, and most have a local specialty that's worth trying. Beachfront restaurants, especially the ubiquitous baracas (kiosks), can be a pleasant surprise and most will bring food and drink right up to your chosen spot on the sands.

Paraty and Búzios have excellent restaurants serving international cuisine. During high season they fill up beginning at 10 pm and may not close until after sunrise. Restaurants in Petrópolis and Teresópolis serve European cuisine and comida mineira, the hearty, meaty fare from Minas Gerais. Generally, dinner starts at seven and restaurants close around midnight.

To be on the safe side, don't buy seafood from venders strolling along the beach. Be especially careful about the oysters in Búzios and Cabo Frio, which may not be as fresh as the vendor claims.

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  • 1. Trutas do Rocio

    $$ | Rocio | Seafood

    It's off the beaten track—ask a local for directions—and only open on weekends, but this rustic, riverside restaurant is really something special...Read More

  • 2. Belli Belli Gastrobar

    $$ | Manguinhos | Brazilian

    Owner Alfredo and chef Roque welcome locals like old friends at this great-value gastro-bar, which specializes in high-class cocktails and tasty...Read More

  • 3. Estancia Don Juan

    $$ | Centro | Argentine

    Take a walk through the center of Búzios and you might think you’ve suddenly landed in Argentina thanks to the large number of Spanish speakers...Read More

  • 4. Jardin

    $$ | Abraão | Vegetarian

    When you finally tire of eating grilled fish and rich moqueca stews, head to this contemporary dinner-only spot that specializes in fresh...Read More

  • 5. Lua e Mar

    $$ | Abraão | Seafood

    Expect fresh, well-prepared seafood and weekly live music during high season at this longtime favorite, which is often cited as the best restaurant...Read More

  • 6. O Pescador

    $$ | Abraão | Seafood

    Inside the pousada of the same name, this restaurant serves local seafood prepared using Italian cooking techniques. After dark, you can dine...Read More

  • 7. Pizza na Praça

    $$ | Abraão | Pizza

    On the flagstones of Ilha Grande's main square, this simple restaurant serves up more than four dozen types of pies, from simple margheritas...Read More

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