Brazilian Bust

Brazeiro's guests will be getting only a watered-down Rio, at best

When the pork loin came around, it tasted like canvas, the sausage was so dry and overcooked it was inedible, the chicken thighs were as tough as jerky and the lamb tasted so gamy that only a prodigious amount of mint jelly was able to obscure that foul flavor. The one time I asked for chicken hearts (on a lunch run), they didn't have them, and I didn't see any of the Parmesan-encrusted chunks of swine I've delighted in at other Brazilian places.

Happily, dessert provided sweet reprieve from the inferior rodizio. There were a dozen cakes, puddings and so on at $5 a pop, and several of them were of Brazilian origin. My favorite Amazonian treat wasn't represented: bolo de mandioca, a cassava cake that can taste almost as thick and rich as a cheesecake if prepared properly. However, I adored the sinfully syrupy coconut flan, as well as the manjar branco, a fruity, coconut custard that sent my blood sugar soaring into the stratosphere. Why, I wonder, can't Brazeiro be as authentic with its regular buffet?

I can't complain about the service, which was fawningly attentive, but there was a distinct lack of atmosphere. Other than a few oil paintings of agrarian scenes and gauchos grilling their grub, the vast, spacious interior was upscale yet dull, like a Vegas buffet hall or the banquet room where the local Lions Club holds its awards dinners. Even the wooden sinal I described above was replaced with a paper coaster that was red on one side, green on the other.

Brazeiro's boys from Brazil are hot, but save for the beef, the meat's not.
Jackie Mercandetti
Brazeiro's boys from Brazil are hot, but save for the beef, the meat's not.

Location Info

Map

Brazeiro Steak House

7014 E. Camelback Road
Scottsdale, AZ 85251

Category: Restaurant > Steak House

Region: Central Scottsdale

Details

Prix fixe lunch $17.50 with grill; $9.50 without
Prix fixe dinner $28.50 with grill; $18.50 without
Prices summertime only.

480-945-0005
Hours: Tuesday through Saturday, 11 a.m. to 10 p.m.; Sunday and Monday, 11 a.m. to 9 p.m. (During the week, the restaurant takes a break from 3 to 5 p.m.)

7014 East Camelback Road (Scottsdale Fashion Square, next to Crate & Barrel), Scottsdale

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I'm told the restaurant will be offering live Brazilian music on Friday and Saturday nights, as well as other incentives to get people in the door, like a half-price happy hour and Brazilian vacation giveaways, but until the management fixes certain fundamental flaws, Brazeiro's guests will be getting only a watered-down Rio, at best.

E-mail stephen.lemons@newtimes.com

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