=" /> The Mile High Eater: 08/01/2009 - 09/01/2009

Monday, August 24, 2009

End of Summer thank you.

Hi all

As summer winds down I would like to take a moment to say a few words and give a word of thanks to two chefs. I don’t know if I had mentioned it before but both Barb and I are Librarians by profession and this summer two chefs came down to the Library I work at to do a presentations for our patron’s. The chefs both donated their time from their busy schedule and I just wanted to say thank you to both.

The first one was chef Ian Kleinman from O’s restaurant who did a wonderful presentation for the children that both entertained the kids and encouraged them to look at science in a different way. It has been several months now since he did that but the fact that I still have children come up to me and talk about what he did shows how very excited they were about it.

Chef Kleinman Made such things as Blueberry pop rocks, a lime soda pop, lemon foam and an incredible strawberry ice cream made with liquid nitrogen that each and every one of the kids got a chance to try. His display of Molecular Gastronomy and the encouragement he gave to the kids to learn every thing they can will long be remembered and appreciated here. If you would be interested in more info on Chef Kleinman and his wonderful food and science his restaurants website is http://www.westindenverboulder.com. Chef Kleinman also has a blog that is allot of fun to look at www.food102.blogspot.com. And additionally we did an article or two in our blog here http://www.milehigheater.com/search?q=o%27s.

The second chef that came down to talk to the adults was Chef Skokan of the Black Cat in Boulder. He came to speak about his cooking philosophy as well as sustainable agriculture and farm to table cooking. Chef Skokan if you did not already know has a newly acquired 10 acre farm which the produce from he uses in his restaurant as well as donating to local food banks. He is as passionate about his farm as he is about his food and we had people drive in from 50 miles off to hear him talk and all found his talk to be educational and enlightening.

Chef Skokan’s website is at www.blackcatboulder.com you can go to his great restaurant in boulder or visit his booth at the boulder farmers market. We have articles about him as well http://www.milehigheater.com/search?q=black+cat . Thank you again chef Skokan.

Thanks all for stopping by our Colorado food and dining blog I hope everyone had a great summer and as always if have any questions or comments feel free to leave them here or email us at jonathan or barb @milehigheater.com

Monday, August 17, 2009

Texas De Brazil Head to Head

Hi all

Last week we went to Texas De Brazil www.texasdebrazil.com at their request to give a head to head comparison with the newly opened Fogo de Chao. Once again I must say when you go to a Brazilian steakhouse go with an empty belly so you can fully enjoy the large variety of meats and other food items that they provide. When we walked out of Texas De Brazil we walked out full and happy having had an excellent meal and busy minds trying to compare the 2 restaurants. Here we go with the head to head.

The atmosphere.
He says: In my opinion, it really depends on what you are doing and who you are with. Texas De Brazil has a warm welcoming feel with rich colors and decorations and seems a place to sit back with friends and family to talk and enjoy a great meal. Fogo De Chao has more of a “date” or business meeting feel. I can’t in any way say one is better than the other in this regards as I said above, it depends on what you are looking for on that day.
She says: The atmosphere at both places was humming and busy. But I do have to give props to our server Stephanie at Texas de Brazil who was very competent, eager to answer any of our questions and made our experience that much more special. The décor is very dark wood and elegant. I enjoyed being by the window so that we didn’t feel closed in.

Salad Bar
Once again calling this a salad bar is really doing it a injustice as there is just so much here to eat and snack on that you could easily and happily spend your whole meal just here (but don’t!).

He says: Texas de Brazil’s “salad” bar was very interesting. It featured grilled portabella which I loved even more than the marinated shitake mushrooms at Fogo, to a great smoke Salmon and several nice cheeses and some lovely grilled shrimp. One thing that set Texas de Brazil’s bar apart from Fogo was a hot bar which had a nice soup (on our night a great lobster bisque) and also a traditional Brazilian dish of rice black beans and Farofa . One item that threw me off was they has some sushi rolls on the salad bar that tasted fine but really seemed out of place.
To decide which was better was a matter of great debate between me and Barb as was the whole evening and I am sure you will notice that throughout this article. In the end even though Fogo had several more items on their salad bar, I have to give the salad bar to Texas De Brazil because of the hot bar with its excellent rice beans and Farofa , although it was a very close call ( I really missed the peppers from Fogo).

She says: First up was the salad bar. There were a lot of items on the salad bar menu that I didn’t know what they were. They had the names of things on placards, but even that didn’t help me to know what I was eating. There was lobster bisque soup, sushi, goat cheese (yum) and much more, but again I didn’t know what some things were and not feeling very adventurous, didn’t sample as much as I could have. To me, that was a little disappointing. I could have asked the servers, but it wasn’t just one or two items, but several.
So, for me Fogo has the better salad bar (they should add goat cheese though!).

Ok, this is really what it is all about. You come here for the meat, and oh man did they have a lot of it.
The meat at Texas de Brazil was all pretty good with a few stand outs and a few not so much. We will go ahead and list several that we can take a direct comparison with. The sides here are once again the cooked bananas and garlic mashed potatoes. To me, once again the mashed potatoes were good but did not stand out. The bananas however were a bit sweeter with a nice taste of cinnamon. Myself, I liked Fogo’s a bit better but Barb preferred the sweeter taste of Texas De Brazils.

He says: House specialty which is a cut of top sirloin. This was very, very good at both restaurants. Myself, I honestly could not call it. I decided both restaurants were about equal with this cut of meat with the taste and tenderness. Texas de Brazil is a bit saltier in general with their meat due to the way they cook it, but not to a point where it detracts at all from the meal.
She Says: We started just as we did at Fogo with the house special, the picanha. This meat is so delicious and moist and it melts in your mouth. More meat made the rounds, and I next chose the lombo pork, chicken wrapped in bacon and lamb.

He says: I did prefer Texas de Brazil chicken entrée’s more than fogo’s but both were very good
She says: The chicken too was delicious and refreshing. I enjoyed it more than Fogo’s.

Filet Mignon:
He says: Here I found Fogo’s Filet Mignon to be superior to Texas De Brazil both in taste and tenderness. Mind you that Texas’s was not bad and I would be happy to have it on my plate anytime, mmm. But, Fogo’s was a touch better.

She says: Next up was the filet mignon wrapped in bacon. Oh my, this was the bomb as far as I was concerned. It was so yummy, so soft and delicious.

Lamb Chop:
He says: They brought out a nice mint jelly to our table and the lamb chop was tender and juicy and with the addition of the jelly this was a definite yummm . Hands down, Texas de Brazil’s Lamb Chop was superior to Fogo’s
She says: Our server brought over mint jelly for the lamb and never having mint jelly before gave it a try. I must say it was a nice contrast to the lamb and decided that more is needed in the future.

Pork : The best comparison I can come up with is Fogo’s Lombo vs Texas de Brazil’s Pork and Parmesan.
He says: Both are yummy and these are very close overall, both of them being very tender and juicy, but I would need to give a slight edge to Fogo’s spices over Texas De Brazil’s Parmesan. Though I have gone back and forth about this a lot it is sooo close and both are just very good!

She says: The lombo was this wonderful boneless pork piece wrapped in parmesan cheese. It was delicious. It was juicy and rich in flavor and went down very easily.

This is where they cook the meat even after the meal when we went in this room I started to get hungry again with the wonderful smells.

He says: a wash for me here both are good and tasty and a bit spicy
She says: I didn’t try the sausage here. I’m not a huge sausage fan, and it just didn’t appeal to me that night.

Between the three of us we tried out three deserts.
1. Mousse De Maracuja (Passion fruit mousse). This was similar to the dessert my Father had at Fogo but I think done better. Of the three desserts at the table we all kept going back to this one. It was sweet and tart and just delicious!
2. Cheesecake: Very good with beautiful plating and a nice crust.
3. Crème Brule Tasty with a firm top and a lemony taste to it this was very good as was all the desserts but not really a stand out when compared with the other 2 desserts.
She says: Of course, by the time dessert comes around you are so stuffed, but you just can’t say no and so we didn’t. The desserts were good, all three of them that we partook of. But again, this is a steakhouse and so dessert wise; it’s a wash for me. They were all good, all filling, all decadent all fattening!

Overall Impressions:

He says: Two things I really want to mention about our evening at Texas De Brazil. The introduction to how a Brazilian steak house works and what we were in store for was made better and more interesting by our… hmm don’t want to call it a server maybe a host is a better word as ( her name) she was more around to make sure everything was going ok and to explain what things were etc regardless what you call her she was fantastic and made the meal that much more enjoyable with her knowledge and friendliness. Also Elena asked for a drink that the bar did not know but the assistant manager did and that person went ahead and made it for her and from all reports it was fantastic.
She says: I don’t know if I can really say one way or another which Brazilian steakhouse to go to. They are both very good restaurants with wonderful selections at both. Each place has it’s own uniqueness and overall feel, but truly I think it depends on where you are and where you’re going. If you’re going downtown, I’d suggest trying out Fogo de Chao. If you’re going on a shopping excursion, I’d pick Texas de Brail. Or, if you just want a great meal try them both!

Wow ok this is so very hard to do when you enjoy both meals very much and everything is close its hard to say one is better than the other so you know I don’t think I will. I don’t think you can possibly be unhappy with either restaurant and indeed I bet you will leave full and happy. As I said at the beginning I think it really depends on what you are doing for the evening and maybe more importantly where you are.

Wanted to put in a quick update note. It has been about a year since we wrote this post and time has made a winner more clear for Barb and I, though we enjoyed both when we think of going to a brazillian steak house fogo de chao is the one we crave so I think will make me say Fogo was the overall winner

As always thanks for stopping by our Colorado food and dining blog if you have any questions or comments feel free to ask them here or contact us at barb or jonathan @milehigheater.com

Member of the Boxxet Network of Blogs, Videos and Photos

Texas de Brazil  on Urbanspoon

Monday, August 3, 2009

Battle of the Brazilian steakhouses

Hi all

Just a quick note for this Monday morning last week after our post about Fogo de Chao the folks at Texas de Brazil contacted us and challenged us to do a head to head with them vs Fogo and tomorrow night we are taking up that challenge. It should be interesting to see if Texas de Brazil can outshine the great night we had Fogo.

Stay tuned for the battle of the Brazilian steakhouses 