Favela Grill: The Closest to Brazil We Might Ever Get.
By Ilija Sekulovski
This week’s pick of the week is our favorite local Brazilian spot, Favela Grill. Favela is home-y. Is that a word? It is now. It’s comfortable. Dimly lit and inviting, Favela is a great place to end up on a weekend night, which is when we stopped by. In the time we were there, the atmosphere COMPLETELY changed– going from a quiet, intimate dinner, to a live music filled dinner filled with the energy of the suddenly filled restaurant.
Favela does comfort food, and they do it right. Owner Andreia Frison tells us that Favela is named after the areas in Brazil that have the most amazing, available and authentic foods–the favelas. All their dishes are authentic recreations of traditional Brazilian food, so if you’re a Brazilian missing home– this is your place. Or if you love great food…this is also your place. IT’S JUST GREAT FOR EVERYONE, OKAY. Okay. Let’s talk about food.
Favela has specials nearly every day and night of the week– ranging from business lunch menus to their specialty dishes available only as daily specials. Wednesday through Saturday is when these specialty dishes are available and you do NOT want to miss out. Saturdays are the day for their award winning Feijoada, and we can tell exactly why it’s called the best Feijoada in New York. If you’ve never heard of Feijoada, get ready to learn. Feijoada is a thick stew of savory black beans and pork, that is simmered in the kitchens of Favela until it’s perfectly steamy and creamy, ready to be poured of the perfectly tender rice they serve up with it. It comes to you in an adorable mini…cauldron? It’s gorgeous.
They also have traditional foods like Costela Bam Bam– dinosaur sized ribs that you could totally share but probably won’t want to once you get the first bite, Churrascao which is as close to a literal meat tower as we’ll ever get. The Costela Bam Bam is one of the most tender pieces of meat we’ve ever tried, and when they tell you it falls off the bone…they’re not kidding.
Favela Grill is a meat-eaters paradise. They’ve got great options of perfectly seared salmon and sauteed shrimp, but if you’re a meat lover, get ready to have a new favorite dinner spot. They also have the Caipirinha– Brazil’s most popular drink. You guys. These are SO good. We had the coconut….and mango…and passion fruit…and lime…and…yeah, that was it. I think. If you’re ordering any drink at Favela…it should absolutely be a Caipirinha. Seriously.
OH AND DESSERT. Okay, listen. There’s a dessert called the Bolo de Banana Flambado com Sorvete. Order it. It’s Banana Cake Flambe hiding under a huge scoop of cold vanilla ice cream, served on a warm skillet in warm, gooey, sweet, dripping sauce. It’s the perfect mix of hot and cold, and the different textures literally melt in your mouth.
If live music is your thing, weekends at Favela are for you. They have different singers on either night, and the ambiance they create is phenomenal. It’s not too loud and club like, but somehow, the music makes Favela even more fun and enjoyable, while keeping it intimate. It’s the perfect place for everyone– glancing around we saw friends out for a night on the town, families with babies in tow, and couples insisting on the last bite. Oh, and us. Stuffing our faces. Mhhhhhh.