In Brazil, the best churrascarias – steakhouses to us – are the ones run by families, handed down from generation to generation. As luck would have it, one of those very churrascarias opened in Perth in December. Subiaco’s Lapa Brazilian Barbecue is run by Chef Fabio, the youngest in the family which previously ran a 60-year-old churrascaria back in Brazil.
Lapa Brazilian Barbecue serves little else than – you guessed it – meat, which it cooks on a giant rodízio. This gas rotisserie can be seen from any seat in the restaurant. It sits behind a giant pane of glass and video of it streams onto flatscreens around the restaurant. A vegetarian might not feel too comfortable here.
While there are a couple of a la cart dishes, most non-vegetarian diners opt for the Endless Feast. Every minute or two, one of the passadores, armed with a knives and long skewers, offer slabs of one of the 16 types of meat they happen to be carrying. There’s pork sausage, lamb rump, beef ribs, pork scotch fillet and chicken wings, to name a few. They all come out juicy, barbecued to perfection and accompanied by three traditional sauces, two types of salad and a never-ending bowl of moreish cheese balls.
A word to the wise: don’t ignore the little red and green coaster marked “Sim por favor” on one side and on the other “Não Obrigado”. It’s nearly impossible to say no to the passadores with their luscious Brazilian accents as they offer you an umpteenth serve of meat. Flip your coaster to the red side and they’ll have mercy.
(Also published in Agenda)