There's a new Fogo de Chão in Pasadena, and on a recent media visit, I found out there are many ways to fogo without having always to go full-on all-you-can-eat churrasco, although that's what they are known for. Here are some insider tips to make the most of your experience.
Visit during lunch instead of dinner
Many people visit the Brazilian steakhouse Fogo de Chão for the churrasco experience. That's where the various gauchos serve you sizzling meats from swords until you beg them to stop. You can expect about 14 different types of meat during lunch, like Filet Mignon, Picanha, and Frango (Chicken). The meal also comes with a Market Table and Feijoada Bar - an elevated soup and salad bar. Lastly, you will receive Brazilian side dishes like Pão de Queijo (cheesy bread) and Caramelized Bananas, among others. The cost is $43.95 on weekdays and $44.95 during weekend brunch.
When you visit during dinner, you get the same meal, but the price is $66.95 a person. Perhaps that's because people eat more at dinner time?
Pay less if you eat less
If you're the kind of person that doesn't want to stuff yourself until your gaucho pants don't fit, then I have a solution for you. The Market Table and Feijoada Bar is only $15 during the Weekday Gaucho Lunch, and you have the option to add 8-10 oz of meat to that for $8 to $10, depending on the cut. This also includes the Brazilian Side Dishes.
During dinner, the cost of the Market Table is $32.95, but there's no option to add additional meat. Ordering a la carte is excellent if you'd prefer fish or Cauliflower Steak instead of red meat. Once again, lunchtime prices are lower than dinner.
Grab a drink at the bar
Fogo de Chão in Pasadena offers EVERYDAY HAPPY HOUR all day in their bar area. Prices are $5 for beers like Xingu Black and Stella Artois, $7 for South American Wines, and $9 for South American cocktails like Caipherinas. While that price extends to the table for the South American Wines and multiple cocktails, if you want something like a Samba Squeeze Martini, you'll have to pay $15.90 instead of $9.
I recommend getting to your reservation a little earlier and enjoying a drink at the bar before enjoying your meal. Then you can really chow down at Fogo de Chão.
Fogo de Chão in Pasadena
Fogo de Chão in Pasadena is open daily from 11 a.m. on. Brunch takes place on weekends from 11:30 a.m. to 2 p.m. There is parking in the Paseo mall and valet, but they do not validate.
Fogo de Chão: 234 E. Colorado Blvd. Pasadena, CA 91101 (626) 556-9222