When we think of Brazil, we think of all things fun like; carnivals, football and samba, so… when the new Viva Brazil restaurant spectacularly announced itself to Newcastle last month, it created quite the buzz with the city’s movers and shakers.
Even now, after the dust has settled, Viva continues to impress. Part of the attraction is that the churrascaria, or Brazilian steakhouse, is quite a refreshing break from the norm. The I LOVE NCL Team visited the restaurant this week in order to put it through its paces.
Situated on Newcastle’s Grey Street, the venue itself was open-plan and spacious with snug little booths tucked away in its corners. The decor boasted walls covered with Brazilian street art against modern furnishings which made for an authentic, yet cosmopolitan feel. Up-beat Samba music played in the background which added to the overall tangible Brazilian theme.
We were shown to our table and offered a choice of menus along with an explanation of how the whole dining experience works. Whilst sampling a delicious Caipirinha cocktail, from Viva’s extensive cocktail list , we deliberated on which menu to opt for; Full Rodizio, Seafood, Vegetarian or Rodizio Especial.
We eventually opted for the Full Rodizio (£24.95) which is an unlimited feast of the 15 different cuts of BBQ meats on offer, accompanied by unlimited salad. We were given a coaster-sized disc which was green on one side, red on the other.
The principle of the disc is… You turn the disc to red or green, depending on whether you want the attention of the passing “passadores”(waiters) or not. The uber approachable passadores patrol the restaurant with a selection of meats on large skewers If you want some meat, they cut off a slice and you grab it with a mini pair of tongs supplied to you at the table.
So much so that it became quite difficult to say no to the relentless bombardment of juicy steaks, spiced chicken legs, sausages and even a pineapple. My absolute favourite was the beautifully tender and succulent ‘Fraldinha’ flank steak which I highly recommend you try.
The offerings at the salad bar were just as impressive as the meat. Among the huge selection of dishes were delicious rice and beans, buttery sweetcorn and peas, herby carrots, rich and creamy potato salads, garlicky mushrooms and an incredible chicken salad made with sultanas and matchstick crisps.
We rounded the meal off with an exquisite Torta De Limao – Lime tart (£4.95) which was light, refreshing and beautifully presented.
At £24.95 a head, this meal is about the same price as a decent steak elsewhere in Newcastle. However, the great thing about Viva is that the quality of the food isn’t compromised by the volume, giving you a hell of a lot more bang for your buck!
Viva offers delicious food in a fun and quirky manner, and that’s what will keep diners flocking here for years to come.
I Love Newcastle Magazine would love to hear your thoughts about the above post, so please feel free to share them in the comments box below.