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Movies, dining and things to do / Spokane and North Idaho

Nothing like a Grille From Ipanema

Yeah, that's a plate full of veggies. But note that my wife's knife and fork are being applied to the small chunk of beef - I believe it's a piece of grilled sirloin - that takes up a small corner of her plate. It's a small piece of meat but that's because we were eating at the Coeur d'Alene eatery Grille From Ipanema, a Brazilian steakhouse, and we enjoyed many such small chunks throughout Friday evening.

We were fortunate enough to spend a couple of weeks in Brazil last August, in Rio and in Sao Paulo. And while we didn't go to any pure churrascos brasilianos, we did enjoy the process of having a variety of meat cut to your order (especially in one lunch outing in Rio). And the Grille From Ipanema is the closest thing we've found to a genuine Brazilian experience.

Besides the buffet salad bar - another Brazilian specialty - we were visited by roving gangs of meat carvers, stopping by our booth to cut off chunks of sausage, BBQ'd beef, shredded beef, garlic steak, chicken and even fish. They just kept coming, as long as we kept our little yellow, green and red cylinder marker on our table turned the right way up.

I'm not going to say that every bit of meat was the best I've ever eaten. Some was a bit overdone. But that was the best thing about the night because then NEXT bite would be just about perfect. And our servers would ask what we wanted and, better, apologize when the meat was either too overdone or too rare.

Only thing I was missing? A Brahma beer. Had to settle for a Corona. But that was good enough, certainly to bring me back. Next time with friends.

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