Today, I took my two boys out for lunch. Where did they want to go? Our favorite restaurant in Rio de Janeiro, Wasabi. It had been well over a year since we had been there and to my surprise, it had expanded, but still had the South Hampton-meets-Buzios feel to it.
Being the polite Canadian, I asked the owner if it was okay to take photographs of his restaurant and I explained about my blog. So in effect, this is my first real restaurant review. All comments are welcome,folks!.
Wasabi is a fusion restaurant in Barra da Tijuca owned and run by Alex Jorge. He has been involved with food since 1988 when he started out as a sushiman. At that time, he also got involved with Italian cooking. Sushi restaurants abound here in Rio, but Alex took his sushi to a new level. Over the years, Alex has fused oriental food with a Brazilian touch, by using local ingredients. Imagine a grilled fish kabob with mangos and leeks...divine. When I asked Alex to sum up his feeling about his type of food, he said that the most important for him is that it is done with love. And it is.
The view from the restaurant is amazingly beautiful, looking over a lagoon and the mountains, on a clear day you can see up the back of the Gavea Rock and the Floresta da Tijuca...Venice meets Rio.
The chef, Vitor Lisboa, puts out dishes such as 'Crock Nira', made with salmon, kani and nira rolled in a tempura batter and lightly fried, and Fish Tataki, made with assorted fish, green onions rolled in an edible rice paper.
There is, of course, the sushi bar with two sushimen cutting fish and rolling to feed the demand for classic Japanese fare. My son Caetano is a big fan of the sushi, and my other son, Cristiano, can't get enough of the rings of squid, done tempura style.My favorite is the seared tuna sashimi with black sesame seed crust....mmmmm.
Wasabi has a bit of everything for everyone, vegetarian,Japanese, so it is a good option for grownups and for kids (it also has a kids menu).
Shopping Barra Point
Av Armando Lombardi 350,3rd floor
Barra da Tijuca, Rio de Janeiro
Telephone (21) 2491 2920
Open Daily from 12h -24h
Prices from R$3.99/100g during the week at lunch, R$4.29/100g weekends and holidays
Evening buffet from R$42.90 during the week, R$45.90 on weekends and holidays
All credit cards accepted