Restaurante Gaivota, Homemade food in Buzios

IMG_1571 IMG_1561 IMG_1560 IMG_1567 IMG_1568 IMG_1569Sometimes when you are travelling, finding a place to eat that tastes like home can be quite difficult. But in Búzios, this beach town in the state of Rio, to where we go for weekend getaways once in a while, we have already found the perfect place to eat healthy and fresh home-made food tasting like home.

We go to Restaurante Gaivota for quite a long time. It is amazing how this modest family restaurant still remains offering the same standard of delicious food for years. There is no sophistication there.  Just some tables covered with plastic towels, attentive service, fair price and fresh food is enough to keep us faithful to this place over the years.

This last visit was a couple of weekends ago. We were arriving in Búzios by lunchtime after a 3 hour ride from Rio de Janeiro and it looked just perfect to make a pit-stop at Restaurante Gaivota for lunch, before we go to the inn we were staying.

Restaurante Gaivota is located near Geribá Beach, our favourite beach to stay in Búzios. So whenever we go to Buzios we always go there to have the same delicious meal, “Cação” Fillet (“cação” is the commercial name for small shark in Brazil) sided by rice and beans, french fries and salad. They have many options in their menu but  we just order the same dish every time! We just like to keep the tradition!

They like to keep things simple and you won’t find their website or Facebook page, because they just don’t have it. But believe me, if you are planning to visit Buzios, Gaivota is totally worth the visit! Try it and then let me know what did you find!

To know other people’s opinion check some comments on Tripadvisor.

Restaurante Gaivota – Rua Virginia, 24 , Búzios, Rio de Janeiro



Saturday in Jardim Botanico neighborhood


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My sister and I had made special plans for this saturday. We would like to have brunch at Confeitaria Colombo, at Forte de Copacabana, a perfect place for having breakfast and lunch outdoors, enjoying the beautiful view of Copacabana beach while eating all the delicious appetizers of the traditional Confeitaria Colombo. But we didn’t count that the weather would be so bad. The weather forecast said that the day would be cloudy with occasional showers during all day. And they were not wrong. When I woke up and saw the heavy and grey clouds in the sky I knew that we would have to change our plans, as we couldn’t risk getting caught in the rain with three children.

So my sister-in-law suggested trying a different and new place in Jardim Botanico neighborhood , Emporio Jardim, a mix of bakery, delicatessen and bistrot.

We were a group of ten, including the three kids, and as we arrived by 12 pm, the restaurant was crowded and we had to wait a little for a table. But the staff was all very solicitous and after a 15 minutes wait we are all set in the table ordering our brunch.

I had a tasteful omelet sided by a green salad and the most delicious gluten-free toast, I have ever had, totally different from those hard gluten-free toasts I’m used to buy in the supermarket. The cappuccino was also very tasty. The place is charming and the food is great, but they still need some adjustments in the service, we found the staff a little confused to handle with orders of big groups. Anyway, we had a lovely time, and it is totally worth the visit!

By the time we finished our brunch we had three little kids full of energy to spend. As it was not raining and as a gift for the kids nice behavior in the restaurant we decided to go to Jardim Botanico , so that they could run around and play a little bit. After a 10 min walk we were all there!

Everybody had fun! Kids playing, adults talking and appreciating nature and me, as usual, photographing everything.

After a while playing in the playgound area we started to feel some rain drops. A light rain, but it was enough to make us leave.

This full day ended in my apartment where my boy played with his cousins and we all ate a good snack: pães de queijo and passion fruit juice!

Have a nice weekend!

10 places to have a drink in Rio

2014-05-02 16.52.33Recently  World Travel Guide  invited me to share with their audience my top 10 bars to go out for a drink in Rio. In the same article they interviewed the Chef and Author, Leticia Schwartz, to list her Top 5 restaurants in Rio. If you are in Rio for the World Cup, you should check her favourite restaurants. You can read the whole article here.

Now I share with you here my list of favourite bars and some photos I found in my photo gallery!!

When talking about going out for drinks, Rio has a great range of options to fit all budgets. From the most simple boteco (that’s what we call very simple bars) to the more sophisticated and fancy decorated bars, you’ll easily find one that fits your style.

  •  Bar Urca (Rua Candido Gaffree 205, Urca) is a very traditional bar in the quiet Urca neighbourhood. The tables overlooking Guanabara Bay are the perfect spot for a cold beer and a plate of delicious bolinhos de bacalhau (codfish balls).

Guanabara Bay night view from the seawall in front of Bar Urca

  • Azul Marinho (Avenida Francisco Bhering, Hotel Arpoador Inn, Arpoador) is a beautiful bar in front of Arpoador Beach. This is the perfect spot to watch one of the most beautiful sunsets in Rio, as the sun falls behind Dois Irmãos Mountain. The prices are a little expensive but the stunning view makes up for it.
  • Paris Bar (Praia do Flamengo 340, Flamengo) is one of my favourite choices when I’m in the mood for something a little more sophisticated. Located on the second floor of Casa Julieta de Serpa cultural centre, Paris Bar draws a hip, young crowd. Alex Mesquita, elected Rio’s best barman in 2013, has a great selection of drinks and cocktails on offer. My favourite is the Parfait Amour, a purple liqueur served in a tea cup.

Paris Bar, Casa Julieta de Serpa

  • The lively mood of Shooters Cocktails Bar (Rua Nelson Mandela 100, Botafogo) makes this bar one of my favourite for drinks in the Botafogo neighbourhood. Try to go midweek, when it is not so crowded. It is definitely a great choice to hangout with friends, try different cocktails and listen to music.

Absolut Punch, my favourite drink in Shooters!

  • OsBar (Avenida Calógeras 18, Cinelandia) is a bar and restaurant in Cinelandia, the downtown neighbourhood close to the National Museum of Fine Arts. As in any boteco, don’t expect any sophistication in OsBar! But you can taste the coldest beer on earth and the food is great as well. On Fridays they have a delicious and typical Brazilian feijoada (a traditional beef and pork stew). It is a great choice for lunch, especially during happy hour.
  •  Deck Bar (Avenida Atlântica 2964, Copacabana) is a bar on the rooftop floor of Pestana Rio Atlântica Hotel. Order a beer, a caipirinha or a glass of wine, and enjoy the breathtaking view of Copacabana Beach. If you like to party, go on a Thursday, Friday or Saturday when the resident DJ takes to the decks.
Deck bar,my choice for a girls happy hour!

Deck bar,my choice for a girls happy hour! (Photo by Monica Amon)

  •  Rio Rock Blues (Rua do Riachuelo 20, Lapa) is the place to go for those who love rock music and want to have a lively experience in Lapa. A nice selection of appetizers, all kinds of drinks and good quality live rock and roll makes this a winner for those looking for a party.
  • Bar D’Hotel (Avenida Delfim Moreira 696, Leblon) This trendy-chic restaurant on the second floor of Marina All Suites Hotel is great for a couple of romantic drinks or to have dinner with friends. The great variety of cocktails and the retro décor are the highlights. For a table with a beach view, it’s better to make reservations.
  • Paxeco Bar (Rua Pacheco Leão 724D, Jardim Botanico) is in the heart of the Jardim Botanico neighbourhood. The bar has an open terrace where you can view the Botanical Garden’s palm trees and a great night view of Christ the Redeemer. Again, this is a place more suited to romantic, intimate drinks on a moonlit night.
  •  Antigamente  (Rua do Ouvidor 43, Centro) is my favourite bar in the bohemian corridor of Rua do Ouvidor for its informal and pleasant atmosphere. The excellent food (try the cod fish dishes), delicious appetizers and good service makes it a great choice for lunch. Take a table on the sidewalk, drink a cold beer and taste the delicious pastel de costela (spicy meat cakes) while waiting for your mains. Perfect!