Brazilian restaurant opens in Lebanon

22 de novembro de 2017

São Paulo – A Brazilian bar-restaurant opened late last month in Lebanon in Dbayeh, near Beirut. The spices and décor all hark back to Brazil. Rio Vermelho is the first Brazilian restaurant in Lebanon, according to manager and partner Elio Chahoud.

The place is named after a beach in Salvador, Bahia that some of its owners have been to. They embraced the name because the beach is a trendy, festive place.

The menu at Rio Vermelho includes black beans, manioc, chicken dishes, salads, oven-roasted beef, bean broth, goat cheese, spits, pão de queijo (cheese balls), coxinha (deep-fried dough-wrapped chicken), pastel (a savory pastry snack with assorted fillings) and empada (a small, pie-like delicacy available in a variety of flavors). Brazilian drinks like caipirinha and batida are also on offer. The top seller is vodka and strawberry, according to Chahoud.

The walls feature pictures of Brazilian martial art capoeira, of Carnival and of birds such as parakeets and parrots. During the opening, a life-sized poster was put up of female Carnival dancers with holes where their faces would be for patrons to take pictures. The poster will be kept up at Rio Vermelho for a while.

The restaurant also features a big screen where Carnival parades are shown. The ambient music is Brazilian. The manager plans to have live music and barbecue on Sundays.

According to Chahoud, Rio Vermelho patrons include Brazilians as well as Brazilian food lovers. The Brazilian community in Lebanon are regulars. However, according to Chahoud, turnout is still weak and advertisement is needed.

A native of Lebanon, Elio Chahoud holds a degree in Hotel Management. He lived in Brazil for four years before returning to Lebanon, which he did over ten years ago. The idea for the restaurant came from the realization that there were no such venues in the country. Prior to opening Rio Vermelho, Chahoud managed other restaurants, including some of Lebanon’s best. The menu was devised by drawing on experience and research.

Rio Vermelho opens every day from 12pm to 1 am. The food is served à la carte, with the occasional buffet available to meet customer requests. A meal and a drink go for about USD 40.

Quick facts

Rio Vermelho Bar-Restaurant
Brazilian cuisine
Open daily from 12pm to 1am
Innovation and Enterprise Center, Ground Floor
Dbayeh, Mont-Liban, Lebanon
Phone: +961 76 866 080

*Translated by Gabriel Pomerancblum