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Not quite 'Rio' in Earlsfield
Na Brasa (London)
Member Name: catsholiday
Na Brasa (London)
Advantages: The staff couldn't do enough to try to please
Disadvantages: Food was very average
ANOTHER GROUPON DEAL
I bought this deal for the Brazilian BBQ through Groupon and I think it was £14.60. a person. I chose this as it was quite close to where my daughter lives and we had really enjoyed the Brazilian BBQs we had had in Rio de Janeiro and was rather hoping it would be something like that experience.
Our deal included a cocktail, the BBQ and dessert for the £14.60 price. This is what attracted me to the deal. It was an authentic Brizilian BBQ specialising in Rodizio grills and it is near Earlsfield station so handy to get to from Wandsworth. They advertise that there is live music on some nights and indeed there was a young man singing and playing on a guitar in the front of the place later in the evening. The BBQ included all you can eat meat grill and cold buffet, the cocktail or soft drink and a choice of desserts.
Our first impression was that it was not as big as we thought it might be and looked a bit like some of the curry restaurants in Tooting which serve very nice food but don't look that special. It had a couple of tables at the front and a sort of bar area that we walked passed to get to the main restaurant.
Having gone through the front part we went on through to the main seating area at the back and on the way we passed the salad bar and the dessert bar and they looked pretty tasty. There were only a few tables, about ten at most if I remember rightly and then at the very back of the restaurant was the BBQ.
The manager and other staff simply could not do enough for us and were not only attentive but seemed anxious to please. I think the restaurant had only just been open a couple of weeks and so they were keen to look after customers so we would bring other there. Sadly for many reasons I can't see us going back there as it just was not special enough to call us back.
Neither my husband nor my daughter's partner were fussed about the cocktails so my daughter and I had two each and they had beers which we paid extra for. I thoroughly enjoyed my Caipirinha ( well two actually) which is Brazil's national cocktail so I thought it would be a good choice. This is a VERY strong drink made from a cane liquor called cachaça, sugar and lime juice poured over ice.
Once our dinks had arrived they explained that we could go up to the cold buffet and help ourselves as many times as we wanted and then the meat would be brought around to us as and when it was ready.
Off we went and selected our cold stuff. The salads were all quite good and different but not the wonderful array of seafood we had in Rio but I did expect a bit of seafood and there was nothing really very exciting or different. Everything was tasty and fresh but nothing that shouted I am special and Brazilian to me.
We sat down at our table and as we had been told they began to bring the meat around. We had a very good view of the BB which in fact was a big grill with big skewers of meat over it vertically . It wasn't really what I would call a BBQ. It didn't have exciting flames leaping around the meat and all the meat on the skewers looked the same to me. I thought they would have made more of a centre piece out of the BBQ grill as that is what makes this place special, the fact that it is a Brazilian BBQ.
The first meat that arrived was steak. Mine was so tough I couldn't eat it. Then we had kidneys and chicken livers, thanks but no... Lamb I am not so keen on that grilled so although the other tried some of the other meat I stopped trying after the first couple of offerings, the only one I liked was a sort of sausage. Now I realize that £14.60 is not a huge amount to pay for a meal, drink and dessert but that was a deal price. The full price should have been £36.50 and I would have expected something pretty special for that price. I certainly would have expected to be able to chew my steak.
As I said the cold buffet was pretty good but not that special and once again at the price the meal is actually supposed to be I would have expected more exotic salads and ones that were a bit different rather than Russian salad, rice salad and various things like that which were fresh and tasty but ordinary.
Disappointed with the main event we went looking at the desserts and there was a choice of about ten different dishes. Once again there was nothing wrong with the puddings but they were the sort you might find in a buffet at a pub lunch. There was nothing that really excited us. I did my best and tried a little of each just to be sure and I can assure you that there was not a single one that called me back to try a bit more and I love my puddings.
THE DÉCOR AND ATMOSPHERE
Once again I know they were only just opened but there was nothing Brazilian about the décor at all. It was all pretty plain and lacking in any colour or interest. The tables were again basic and the cutlery and crockery the sort you might get in a cheap local place. It was not at all special.
There were a few other people in the restaurant which meant that there was a bit of atmosphere but it certainly wasn't packed and it was a Friday night so they were not pulling in the punters from passing trade which is how many of these restaurants do so well in the London suburbs.
SO WILL WE BE GOING BACK?
I mentioned that the staff were very anxious to please and just as we paid the bill for the beers we were given vouchers for a discount if we came back again and a few for some friends. I felt really sad as there was no way we would be coming back or suggesting to friends to go as the food was only very average and quite boring really.
So sorry Nabrasa even though you made us very welcome and looked after us really well I can't see us coming back even with the generous discount cards you gave us. I really hope they sort out the meat offerings as it was not very good and I can't see many people going back a second time and if I had paid full price I would have been very fed up, at the price I paid I was disappointed.
Thanks for reading. This review may be posted on other sites under my same user name.
Summary: A disappointing attempt at a Brazilian BBQ