TEXAS DE BRAZIL – TAMPA BAY METRO

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Down Shift Magazine

By: Robert Maddrey

I must admit that while intrigued to try Texas de Brazil I was at first a little stand-offish given the seemingly high potential for a tacky ambiance or overly gimmicky dinner service; I was pleasantly surprised. In fact I was downright impressed, impressed with the ambiance, the quality of food and the quality of service.

Texas de Brazil’s approach to an upscale steakhouse was as intriguing as it was filling…and that says allot given the copious and bountifully unlimited selections of meats and sides afforded you at every turn.Situated in the West Shore business district, the first thing you will find striking about Texas de Brazil is the building where it is located. Architecturally stimulating amidst a sea of 12 story business complexes, this retail-center which occupies the old Met-Life property is visually interesting; employing lots of sharp angels and glass so as to really make it stand out and “pop” in comparison to the overwhelmingly squared off surrounding structures. That same architectural uniqueness is in-turn carried over into the interior decor of the dining room. Opulent without being over-the-top, everything is tastefully appointed and while impressive is not garish or gilded, instead it strikes a perfect balance between upscale-chic and dimly lit relaxation…the sort of place you can enjoy an excellent meal with friends, family or someone special.The service here is excellent and while the hostesses are very accommodating, a reservation is recommended as even on the Thursday night we attended there was a lengthy wait for walk-ins. The wait can of course be forgiven because never here should you feel rushed, instead it’s far more similar to a European dining experience in that you have your table for as long as you like with the freedom to enjoy your dinner courses at your own pace. The waiters were all very knowledgeable of the menu as well as accommodating for first time diners such as ourselves in helping us to understand just how the Texas de Brazil system works.The food here was phenomenal…bacon wrapped filet kabobs, flank steak cutlets, bacon wrapped chicken breasts, lamb chops, sausage and a peppery Churascara tenderloin; all excellently seasoned and moist. Cooked to your preference this is a steak or meat-lovers paradise as the meat keeps arriving at your table as long as you like. The sides and respective salad bar are also equally as impressive, offering up a smorgasbord of fresh salad offerings as well as delights such as potatoes au gratin, she-crab bisque and others…all excellent! The wine selection and bar offerings are equally indulgent offering something for every pallet and taste. The same can also be said for the dessert menu, though small it is all prepared fresh and presented with the utmost care. On this evening we had the fortune to try both the creme-brulee and the Chocolate ganache cake…c’est magnifique.All things considered well reviewed and very well recommended for anyone seeking a bit of a different upscale dining experience; excellent!

Date:
Tuesday, April 5, 2011