At Favela Grill, a promising new Brazilian place in Astoria, don’t overlook the weekday specials. A good one is bacalhau (salt cod) stewed with potatoes, olives and onions, which might turn up on Fridays, Brian S reports. The specials, served with rice and exceptionally tasty beans, are $10 or, before 3 p.m., $7 for a smaller portion.
Favela, which replaces a churrascaria called Girasol, offers some grilled meats, but its menu leans more toward roasts, stews, and sautes. One smart order is moist, flavorful carne de sol (sun-cured beef) with onions and manioc fries. For starters, try light, fresh-tasting empanadas–fillings include bacalhau, meat, and tuna with peppers. Overall, it’s simple, sturdy, comforting chow, some of it a tad short on flavor, says quentinC. “The food is not mind-blowing,” he adds, “but it’s fresh, down-to-earth and well prepared.”
A few blocks south, a veteran Brazilian buffet and churrascaria has settled into a satisfying groove. “You must try Brasilianville”, insists smudgy, a fan of its unique, tasty buffet dishes, solid grilled meats, and bargain prices. junglekitte says a recent buffet spread featured impeccably fresh pasta, potato salad, beets, green beans, chicken in cream sauce, and stupendous corn pudding, among other things–all for $8. “Everything I tried was top-notch. I felt like I was back in Brazil.” As with any buffet, timing is critical. Look for fresh batches of chow sometime after 8 p.m., when hungry regulars start to fill the room.
Meats are dependably good. Brian S reports a scrumptious, 13-ounce portion of wine-marinated entrana (skirt steak), done extra-rare to order, for just $5.80. “On a good day at La Portena or Esquina Criolla you could do better–for three times the price,” he notes.
Favela Grill [Astoria]
33-18 28th Ave., near 35th St., Astoria, Queens
Brasilianville Cafe and Grill [Long Island City]
43-12 34th Ave., between 43rd and 44th Sts., Long Island City, Queens