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“AMAZING experience!!!” 5 of 5 stars
Review of Fogo de Chao

Fogo de Chao
645 Hennepin Ave., Minneapolis, MN (Downtown)
612-338-1344
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Ranked #6 of 1,578 restaurants in Minneapolis
Price range: $48 - $48
Cuisines: Brazilian, South American, Steakhouse
More restaurant details
Restaurant details
Good for: Large groups, Doing business, Special occasions, Entertaining clients
Dining options: Breakfast/Brunch, Lunch, Dinner, Reservations, Buffet, Late Night, Private Dining
Dining style: Casual Elegant
Neighborhood: Downtown
Cross street: 7th St. S
Grand Forks
Senior Contributor
21 reviews 21 reviews
14 restaurant reviews
Reviews in 14 cities Reviews in 14 cities
10 helpful votes 10 helpful votes
“AMAZING experience!!!”
5 of 5 stars Reviewed November 11, 2013

After hearing multiple recommendations, my wife and I were finally able to visit this "mythical" meat restaurant. I have to say, this is one of the two most memorable experiences I've ever had at a restaurant. I want to emphasize the word "experience," because it definitely goes beyond the food at this wonderful place.

I was able to make noon reservations the day before and, while the restaurant was bustling when we got there, we were seated right on time. We had one main waiter who explained everything to us, and this initial "orientation" was definitely essential. As I waited for my wife to get back from washing her hands, I witnessed the first gaucho going around and slicing off gorgeous chunks from his meat skewers. I'm telling you, I could hear the meat sizzling, and I was drooling!

When my wife returned we started off with a trip to the salad bar--WOW! Per the advice of our server, we didn't pile our plates, but we easily could have... smoked salmon, heart of palm, fresh mozzarella, fresh parmesan, nice fresh veggies, etc. Definitely not your typical salad bar. If you are a vegetarian, you could easily enjoy just the salad bar. And since a lot of the food at the bar is exotic, I have no doubts you could get your money's worth.

My wife and I were here for the meat, though, I don't mind saying. We enjoyed the sampling of stuff from the salad bar, but we couldn't wait for the first gaucho to come by. And it wasn't a long wait! With about 12 different types of meat, as long as we had our little sign set to "go," we were barraged with piping hot pieces of steak, chicken, mutton, sausage, etc. This meat is soooooo good! The servings aren't what you get when you order at a typical steakhouse, so don't expect half pound chunks. However, after about 11 visits from the gauchos, I'm a bit scared to know how much meat I ate, cause it definitely adds up. There were only a couple things I didn't care for--the bottom sirloin was tough, and the mutton just didn't appeal to my tastebuds, but everything else was amazing. I'm the kind of guy who would never ever choose chicken over steak, but I even had a couple servings of their amazing chicken legs! And the filet mignon, top sirloin, rib eye... WOW!

Our server was really fantastic. I regret not making a note of his name, but he was super helpful--and don't underestimate this! We almost felt like he was a tour guide, giving us knowledgeable information about the different types of meat, the process, the restaurant, etc. He was also available almost within seconds the entire time we were there. I've never seen servers so readily at our table before! In addition to our main server, the gauchos were fantastic. We could make a specific request and this would be honored in a very timely manner. We also had people coming up to us to make sure we had our requests satisfied. Honestly, the service was some of the best I've ever seen!

A couple of quick "warnings":

--The meat tends to be on the rare side. I LOVE medium rare meat, but if you don't like your meat very red, this is something to be aware of. I'm not sure if they will make stuff well done upon request.

--The parking is kind of awkward. We called ahead to ask about parking, and we were told, "We have parking on the property." What they didn't tell us was that this requires some driving around Minneapolis 1-ways to find the parking ramp (that will cost around $9 to $15 depending on how long you stay.)

--This is a hustling, bustling and rather noisy atmosphere. It's fun, if you ask me, but don't expect a cosy romantic meal!

--I'm honestly not sure how the tips work or what is fair. I tipped a little over 20% of the meal, but I felt I tipped too little. With a restaurant as unique as this, I almost wish there was a guidance for this.

All in all, this is one of the most memorable meals I've ever eaten at a restaurant, and I will definitely be making the trek back. Thank you to all of the staff that made the experience wonderful!!

  • Visited November 2013
    • 5 of 5 stars Value
    • 4 of 5 stars Atmosphere
    • 5 of 5 stars Service
    • 5 of 5 stars Food
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474 reviews from our community

85% Recommend
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Rating summary
    Food
    Service
    Value
    Atmosphere
Date | Rating
  • English first
  • German first
  • Italian first
  • Portuguese first
  • Russian first
  • Spanish first
  • Any
English first
Medford, Wisconsin
Senior Contributor
22 reviews 22 reviews
14 restaurant reviews
Reviews in 17 cities Reviews in 17 cities
13 helpful votes 13 helpful votes
“Great fun and great food”
5 of 5 stars Reviewed November 10, 2013

We had a party of 8 celebrating a wedding. They even gave us a dessert and put "just married" on the plate. very nice ! Food was great. Service was great. However, the Service was a bit zealous for some folks wanting a more leisurely eating. And on Sat night the place was packed. One downside is having to go through lots of meat options to get to the one you want.

  • Visited November 2013
    • 4 of 5 stars Value
    • 5 of 5 stars Atmosphere
    • 5 of 5 stars Service
    • 5 of 5 stars Food
Was this review helpful? Yes
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Howard Lake, Minnesota
Top Contributor
61 reviews 61 reviews
28 restaurant reviews
Reviews in 29 cities Reviews in 29 cities
53 helpful votes 53 helpful votes
“Similar to churrascaria in Rio”
4 of 5 stars Reviewed November 9, 2013

Full disclosure- this place is not cheap. It is worth it, however. I've been to several churrascarias in Rio de Janeiro and Fogo do Chao is comparable, but not quite as good for obvious reasons. Great ambiance and romantic atmosphere. Not sure if I would ever suggest this as a first date, however. You can eat and eat and eat if you want to get your money's worth Well worth the experience! Good accessible location in Minneapolis, as well.

  • Visited December 2012
    • 3 of 5 stars Value
    • 4 of 5 stars Atmosphere
    • 5 of 5 stars Service
    • 5 of 5 stars Food
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This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Minneapolis
Reviewer
4 reviews 4 reviews
4 restaurant reviews
“Perfect for Meat-Lovers”
5 of 5 stars Reviewed November 5, 2013 via mobile

Their salad bar is great, has a diverse picking. Like apple salad to little salmon slices to mushrooms to roasted zucchini. But this isn't where the excitement lies. You turn over your table card to green and you'll have a go at some great meats. If you're like me who don't remember titles very well, it's more of "do I want pork, beef, chicken, or lamb?" Delicious, most meats served were just about tender. I'd go again especially for enjoying as much meat as I want. Great service, too. On their toes, never felt abandoned but not too babied. Great chain. Solid.

Visited November 2013
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Saint Paul, Minnesota
Top Contributor
51 reviews 51 reviews
27 restaurant reviews
Reviews in 23 cities Reviews in 23 cities
10 helpful votes 10 helpful votes
“Wow!!!”
5 of 5 stars Reviewed November 4, 2013 via mobile

While in Brazil, I was lucky to be introduced to churascaria. Fogo de Chao both brings me back to my travels, and blows me away with great food and spectacular service. While a person could do very well on the veggie offerings, this is a carnivore's paradise. Go hungry!!!

  • Visited August 2013
    • 4 of 5 stars Value
    • 5 of 5 stars Atmosphere
    • 5 of 5 stars Service
    • 5 of 5 stars Food
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This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.

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