Sunday, December 16, 2007

A little adventure

Last week Camillo and I went to the Continental Air office in the Copacabana Palace to get my tickets to the USA in February (yippee!, Yippee!). I saw a magazine called 'Eating Out' on one of their tables and I helped myself to a copy. We are Always looking for new places to eat in Rio . We have three favorite places and tend to get stuck in a rut - eating only at the favorites - so the search. To our surprise there was a restaurant featured called Parador Lumiar, practically at our own back door in Condominium Stucky, Nova Friburgo.
This Sunday the weather was fantastic in Friburgo so we decided to take the MP, top-down, and have an adventure (this means that we promise not to complain if disappointed.) We drove to Lumiar to try this place. This Parador/Pousada/fazenda is not in Lumiar but in Boa Esperanca - another fifteen minutes past Lumiar on a very bumpy, roller coaster dirt road. I am not exaggerating! The road starts as a wide dirt road, becomes a narrow dirt road and finally end up a trail that only one car can drive on at a time - all widths are in terrible repair. By the time we got to the narrow, narrow dirt road, we had begun to despair - the ad promised 'a privileged view' and 'that chef Isias Neries matches Brazilian country (fresh) ingredients with contemporary cuisine techniques' so we continued on with a positive adventure like attitude. (I gave you all the bad first because you have to be willing to accept the trip to reap the rewards.)
Finally - we found a one lane private drive lined in Bromeliads and colorful flowers. There are sloping lawns, chalets spaced for privacy and a stylish building that houses the reception area and the restaurant. We both took a big breath of relief. Inside the resturant, from the open patio you can sit to look out over the flower bed and herb garden, watch the cook's helper picking fresh herbs for your dinner.

They have a wine cellar but we decided to try their caipirinhas. GOOD! choice! We shared a starter of fresh made goodies - hot pepper jelly, eggplant, jabuticaba jelly, buffalo mozzarella and more. We shared a green salad with apples/nuts/and arugula. We shared 'Rissotto de Rabada' and finally we shared a desert (a Neapolitan tort - strawberry, vanilla, chocolate delight). We ordered much too much food but everything was excellent and was absolutely worth the bumpy dirt road. (Note that we also shared a special treat from the chef - a small but fantastic mix of coconut/pinapple/sugar desert. We has already ordered the neoploitan tort so we ate both - no problem one was with coffee - no sugar added.)
We have our own little piece of heaven but if we didn't, and needed a quiet place to recharge from Rio City Life - we would spend time in one of their Chalets - as it is, we will return again for more of this Brazilian food. Visit

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