Fogo de Chão

Both Adam and I recently dined at Fogo de Chao with each of our respective work groups. We’d been before, but not in several years. We both found it mostly unchanged, which is a good thing.

Fogo de Chao

Fogo de Chao

There are 24 locations in the states and another eight in Brazil, but I’ve not been to any Fogo other than this one, located in Buckhead since it opened its doors in 2001. This location has a large, open floor plan with rich wood trim, wine bottles, and warm colors all around.

Fogo de Chão interior

Fogo de Chao Atlanta salad bar

As with most churrascarias, at Fogo you are equipped with a two-sided card. When the green side is up the passadores – the guys in gaucho attire walking around with the meat – will swing by your table to offer you food. When your card is flipped to red, they’ll pass you by.

Fogo de Chao salad bar

Goodies from the salad bar.

There’s also a large salad bar with all kind of goodies. I haven’t seen a better salad bar at a churrascaria anywhere in the metro Atlanta area. There are nice cold cuts and cheeses, a typical salad bar with toppings, some potato and pasta salads, and the real good stuff (in my opinion!): olives, roasted peppers, sun-dried tomatoes, asparagus spears, artichoke hearts, and hearts of palm. Yum!

Phenomenal cheesy bread from Fogo

Phenomenal cheesy bread.

Garlic mashed potatoes.

Garlic mashed potatoes.

Fried plantains from Fogo

Fried plantains.

In addition to the salad bar and the passadores bringing around the various types of meat, there are also copious amounts of delicious cheesy bread called pão de queijo (I ate an entire basket myself), plantains, yuca, and mashed potatoes. You can also get a limeade drink with sweetened condensed milk.

Limonada Brasileña

Limonada Brasileña.

Delicious meats from Fogo de Chao

Delicious meats.

Tasty meat!

We got coffees after stuffing ourselves, and even ordered a few desserts. The one I tried was the turtle cheesecakes, and that thing was ridiculously, sinfully delicious!

Fogo de Chao after-dinner coffee

After-dinner coffee.

Turtle Cheesecake

Turtle cheesecake!

Fogo de Chao serving the meat

Fogo de Chao serving the meat.

Anish was with me at Fogo de Chao, since we’re coworkers. He gives Fogo 3 stars, since he is not a fan of churrascarias very much, and he does his ratings based on whether or not he things it’s really work it to go to a place (whereas Adam and I rate things based on how well they do within their own category).

Overall, Fogo de Chao is certainly pricier than other brazilian steakhouses (like Red and Green), and subsequently is of higher quality: in cuts, service, ambience, etc. We thought there a wider of protein types at Red and Green – I missed the chicken hearts while at Fogo. However, the cuts themselves are better than at other places. If you have the money to spend and the desire to spend it at Fogo, I don’t think you’ll be disappointed.

Fogo de Chao sets the standard for brazilian steakhouses in Atlanta and, I’d argue, throughout the US. Though I am anxiously awaiting the Texas de Brazil steakhouse chain to arrive in Atlanta, but more on that another time. Adam and I settled on 4.5 stars for Fogo de Chão.

Fogo de Chão
3101 Piedmont Rd NE
Atlanta, GA 30305

Fogo de Chão on Urbanspoon

emily

Nerd. Foodie. Gamer. Gardener. Cook. Perpetual planner. Aspiring homesteader. BuHi Food Expedition leader. Pixelcrafter. I use too many damn commas.

Posted Under: atlanta food brazilian food
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10 Comments

  1. AJ says:

    The food in Atlanta generally sucks. Having lived in the major cities like New York, San Francisco and Los Angeles, I have to tell you that Fogo is no standard bearer. The meats were ok quality and over salted. Which is what you do with meat of this quality. There are hole in the wall places in Los Angeles that blow this place away. Next time for $10 average plate try Pampas Grill in the Fairfax district of Los Angeles. This tiny place will change your limited perspective on good food. Atlanta is a foodie wasteland. Very few restaurants live up to the hype especially this one. That was the worst use of $163 dollars for two people.

    • emily says:

      Thanks for your thoughts, but I do want to clear up the fact that Fogo de Chao is a chain and clearly not up to the standards of a true brazilian restaurant. Nor does it represent Atlanta cuisine. You get no argument from me about it not being a foodie place, but it is the standard bearer for americanized version of the brazilian churrascaria experience in this area. True brazilian food, not so much.

      I do disagree with you about Atlanta being a foodie wasteland; you just picked a very good post to complain about Atlanta food on because it is very easy to complain about Fogo. Personally, I prefer small, family-run ethnic joints and if you explore the rest of the site, you’ll find nearly 100 posts to that effect. If you’ve only tried americanized big-box restaurants in the downtown area, you’ve not had Atlanta food.

      Thanks for sharing your thoughts, even if I don’t agree with them! One day I hope to take you up on your suggestion of Pampas Grill.

  2. AJ says:

    I have lived her now for 3 years and cant wait til I leave. The main reason is finding good food. It’s not part of the culture here. Yes on occasion you will find a small resturaunt that has something decent and the price is not ridiculous. Just because you have a few exceptions doesn’t mean that Atlanta is a not a food wasteland. I can spend a year exploring San Francisco and not find a handful of places to complain about. They believe in providing a great eating experience irrespective of price. The market truly works there because if you are bad you are out of business. Not here. You can be bad and because no one knows better you stay in business forever. I take suggestions from these review sites to keep from having too many bad experiences. I went to Fogo on your review.

    • emily says:

      I’m sorry you didn’t find what you were looking for. I hear there are authentic brazilian bakeries and such up in Marietta, but I have never been. Good luck in your pursuits to move away!

  3. Hmmm. Fogo de Chao has multiple locations in Brazil. Pampas Grill does not. I would think that if a place were not authentic Brazilian enough, it should fail in its own home country. Brazilians love salty meats. But you can’t really compare two places based primarily on price. FDC is more akin to fine dining where you would go for special occasions or take business clients. PG is a stall in the Farmer’s Market. Both are equally good, but on different levels. FDC may not be the best Brazilian food that I have had, but it is still really good. Part of the draw of being a chain is that the level of expectation is fairly standard from location to location. I haven’t been to Atlanta yet but it seems to have some really good BBQ and Southern food. Comparison with LA and other metros is a bit unfair. LA has population of 3.8 million, Atlanta 443K. I expect the ratio of good to bad places to be almost the same. Based on population, you would have 8.5 times more really good restaurants in LA than Atlanta. So it makes it easier to find. I think your rating of FDC is pretty spot-on. In LA, FDC and PG both have 4 stars on Yelp. So you can assume that they are equals in their perspective class.

    • emily says:

      I think I should look into adding a thumbs up or liking feature.

      An insightful comment and right on the money. Thanks!

  4. Matthew says:

    Sounds like AJ is just unhappy living in Atlanta. He/she says they can’t wait to leave. I was born in and grew up in this great town. I owned and ran some of the hottest nightclubs in the city (Club Rio, Zone, SOHO) back when nightclubs were nightclubs and not dirty joints playing shitty rap music. More power to you AJ. If you need help packing let me know. I’m sure we can round up a few thousand true Atlantans to help pack your junk and get you on your way back to the freakfest of LA.

    • Karen says:

      He said the food is bad and you revert to calling California a freakshow and referring to his possessions as junk. You are the reason people think southerners are stupid and backwards people. The eighties are over. The clubs you supposedly owned are closed and it’s time to move Atlanta forward. It cant be done with narrow minded people like you. Unfortunately, the south has ghosts that will never go away, which makes progress much harder. But your vitriolic response to criticism not the answer.

  5. James says:

    Michael sounds a like the typical ignorant southerner who is content with dragging his knuckles and breeding with his cousins. Atlanta cant improve if it doesn’t embrace criticism, diversity or change. The reasons why CA is so successful(one of the largest economies in the world). Get out and explore the world and perhaps you’ll see why Atlanta is not a destination spot even though it has the busiest international airport. Millions pass through with no desire to even see what your great city has to offer. So the best thing you can do for this city is to encourage people to leave because they do not appreciate the crap that you do instead of listening and changing. Crappy rap music + few fun to do + racism/segregation + lousy food scene + intolerant idiots = not a top ten place people want to come to. Read what your own people are saying. You want to help move them out too. Grow up and make a difference instead of just defending crap. http://www.news-daily.com/news/2012/dec/13/atlanta-continues-lag-tourist-destination-curt-yeo/,

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