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Fogo de Chao

Hardart | | Jan 29, 2007 06:08 AM

I almost titled this post "Fogo de Chit", because our dinner Friday night was that underwhelming.

In short, for $45 a person, I expect certain things: like a coat check on a night when temperatures are approaching the single digits. The ambience of the room was all wrong -- tables packed together with heavy winter coats on the backs of everyone's chairs, noisy and tacky. They took what could have been a grand space -- a former jewelry showcase -- and turned it into Uncle Ted's Montana Grill, part two.

The food? Well, if you want bulk, you get bulk, but if you want things like "quality", it's the wrong place. I found that the cuts of meat that weren't seasoned (like the garlic filet mignon) all started to run together on my palate in an unspectacular way, though the lamb chops were pretty nice. Some cuts of meat came by the table frequently, while others (the ribs) did not arrive until we were about full from everything.

Complimentary side dishes (mashed potatoes, fried polenta, etc) were just plain bad. Watery mashed potatoes = no good. And we didn't even know that there were (overpriced) pitchers of Sangria available until we saw another group nearby with one, and it still took forever for it to arrive.

Seriously: if you want food like this, get to Picanha in the Northeast, which makes no attempt at ambience, but the food is better. And cheaper.

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