Viva Brazil got off to a rough start when its original chef, Eric “Big E.” Austin, departed in a huff just before the restaurant’s opening day (note to self: always Google prospective hires). The eatery’s food--authentic Brazilian cuisine--is good, but its hearty, formal entrees such as the black bean and pork stew, feijoada, and the seafood stew, moqueca seem out of step with the tastes of Uptown’s young neighbors who are either looking to snack affordably on global street foods, or impress a date with slicker digs. Still, carnivores will appreciate the char broiled Churrasco Misto meat platter and cocktail buffs should be sure to try the national drink of Brazil, the caipirinha (kai-pee-REEN-ya) a mojito-like beverage made from sugarcane-distilled cachaça (ka-SHAHSS-ah).
In the span of five years the space at 913 W. Lake St. has seen almost as many restaurant tenants come and go, including Favor Cafe, Restaurant Miami, and most recently Viva Brazil. Now out to break t... More »