I had heard of it, and had been looking for it, but tonight I was just wandering around Union Square and went into Pao de Acucar, the Brazilian market/buffet place right near Barristers Hall. The woman working there does not speak much English, and there was no sign on the case in which they were sitting. But they looked intriguing, like little choux pastries almost, so I pointed to them and she gave me four for one dollar and put them in a small paper bag. I also bought some Mingau de Milho Verde, which I had never heard of, and some rice pudding, just to sample a few things (and I was craving something pudding-like). Outside on the street, I popped one of the (then anonymous) pao de queijo puffs in my mouth, and it was amazement at first bite. Warm, slightly crusty on the outside, moist (but fully cooked) on the inside, nice balance of cheese and dough. I figured it had to be the famed item. I had a second on the way home. Once at home, tried the Mingau and loved it. Never had a custard/pudding with cornmeal in it before; it adds complexity to something that is otherwise just sweet and rather bland. The rice pudding was not special, would not buy again.
So, I'm now addicted to these items. Next time I want to try the buffet; the black beans looked good. Any other recs for this place? I never hear about it on this board.
Give my naivete I'm sure someone is going to say there are much better pao de queijo somewhere else. If so I want to know! Somerville preferred.