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“Best Brazilian in the Bay Area”

Espetus Churrascaria
Ranked #8 of 408 Restaurants in San Mateo
Certificate of Excellence
Price range: $50 - $60
Cuisines: Brazilian, Steakhouse
More restaurant details
Restaurant details
Dining options: Reservations
Dining style: Fine Dining
Cross street: 7th and 8th
2 reviews
“Best Brazilian in the Bay Area”
Reviewed May 18, 2013 via mobile

Best Churrascaria in the Bay Area without a doubt 8-) great food and though the price is pricey it's still worth going 8-)

  • Visited May 2013
    • Value
    • Atmosphere
    • Service
    • Food
Thank JohnPaulPadilla
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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97 reviews from our community

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Rating summary
Date | Rating
  • English first
  • French first
  • German first
  • Italian first
  • Portuguese first
  • Any
English first
Redwood City, CA
Level Contributor
52 reviews
22 restaurant reviews
common_n_restaurant_reviews_1bd8 22 helpful votes
“Great food!”
Reviewed February 4, 2013

I had dinner at Espetus on Saturday night with our party of ten. We arrived an hour early to have a few drinks before our 7 PM reservation. The staff was friendly and actually had our table ready twenty minutes early.

The food spread at Espetus is amazing, but don't fill up on the abundant salad bar and free baked goods before you partake in the main course "Meat". Meat is what Espetus is all about. Espetus prepares many different types of meat dishes in their kitchen using the traditional Brazilian method of cooking the meats on a spit over an open flame.

The meat dishes range from skirt steak, sirloin, prime rib, bacon wrapped sirloin, lamb, chicken, sausage and even shrimp. The meat dishes are brought to your table on the actually spits they are prepared on and the servers cut pieces off the skewer for you while you sit a tour table. I have eaten at other Brazilian Churrascarias and Espetus is one of the best.

The prices are a little high, but the food was very good. Bring your appetite!

  • Visited February 2013
    • Value
    • Atmosphere
    • Service
    • Food
Thank Doug R
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Orinda, California
Level Contributor
59 reviews
30 restaurant reviews
common_n_restaurant_reviews_1bd8 42 helpful votes
“Food was good, service terrible!!! Review is on service”
Reviewed January 25, 2013

Wife organized a surprise birthday party for me and 20 friends. The bill at the end of the evening was over $2k. Now one would think that with a bill like that, we'd get some nice service but absolutely not the case. With a large group, you'll definitely get the short stick. You have to pay the 20% tip which is automatically added to your bill, so there is no incentive for the staff to "wait" on you because they know they'll get paid just wrong. Read on because you'll know why i'm so upset.
First the waiters hardly came around to us, and when they did, it was the cheaper meats like chicken. Lamb or the good cuts rarely came by. The frequency of when they did was very very sporadic. We ended up going towards the buffet bar more often to eat. They provided the cake service because my wife paid for the cake cutting fee, and almost immediately afterwards, the wait staff kept coming by and began clearing out plates! We felt as if they were trying to scoot us out of there!

I'm just glad friends and family were there to make the evening enjoyable. Wife felt terrible because she felt as if our guests didn't get enough to eat.

I highly suggest if you do want to go, go with less than 6 people in your party.

  • Visited February 2012
    • Value
    • Atmosphere
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    • Food
1 Thank sm5486
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Level Contributor
16 reviews
15 restaurant reviews
common_n_restaurant_reviews_1bd8 10 helpful votes
“Best Churrascaria I have been to in USA”
Reviewed December 28, 2012

The quality of meats, service, wine list and appetizer buffet is simply the finest I have experienced in the US. In fact its better than most I have been to and unmatched by any in Brazil where I dine frequently. It knocks the spots off New Yorks Plataforma and the other chain that is in DC and Texas or LA. Not one of them compares to this fine establishment which is run directly by the Brazilian owners.

They have it right in every detail from beginning to end. The best of the best and my hat come off to all who work there as well as the owners. It was the best I have had. Thank you for making it such a memorable meal. They even had my favorite Calif Cab by Silver Oak. The manager when I called him a few weeks later from the East Coast arranged at my request dinner for 6 of my close friends in the area for Christmas. It was no trouble at all and tonight they are all dining there and enjoying some of my favorite wine as well.

I promise we will be back and send as many friends as we can to you. I dont rave unless its really good. Cant wait to go back there. Even the detail in the interior was absolutely perfect, stylish and clean. Well done guys!

G + R

  • Visited November 2012
    • Value
    • Atmosphere
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    • Food
Thank WellTraveledandDined
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
San Mateo, California
Level Contributor
27 reviews
12 restaurant reviews
common_n_restaurant_reviews_1bd8 17 helpful votes
“THE place to go for a long, leisurely dinner!”
Reviewed December 23, 2012

This place is a terrific place to go if you want a unique dining experience, and you ALSO want to be able to enjoy a leisurely, set-your-own-pace meal. Wait staff roam the restaurant in waves, each holding a long skewer of different meats, just roasted, and perfectly cooked. They stop at each table and offer a slice, and the customer agrees or denies on whim. We went again last night, and the whole place was packed, but it did not seem too crowded (great floor plan) and we were never stinted on service. While this restaurant is known for the wait staff and their long skewers of different meats, the salad bar is also equally as amazing. Lots of salads from around the world, and some familiar ones. All very tasty, and... intriguing as well. There is a nearby seafood bar (seafood is hard to skewer and take from table to table, I guess) with hot pasta dishes included. Remember to arrive very hungry, as it will break your heart when you have to start turning away the waitstaff and their long swords of delicious meats. We had two new-to-Espetus family members with us, and when, within the first five minutes, waiters with roasted garlic chicken hearts, filet mignon, chicken drums, pork shoulder, lamb chops, beef ribs, and roasted pineapple came by, their eyes got bigger and bigger. The taste of everything is so amazing, it turns into a conversation topic on its own. "Did you like this?" "What is your favorite?" "When are the pineapples coming around again?" Conversation ends up being centered on foods and what is on one's plate. The only con I could come up with was not really having to do with the restaurant at all, but the outside. Espetus is not in the best part of town (not the worst, but not the best, either), and when I arrived for the first time, I was doubtful I was in the correct area. There is not much parking, and one has to be crafty about finding a place nearby to park. My daughter even mentioned once inside Espetus, that it was such a contrast to the outside venue. (By the way, the inside of Espetus is amazingly designed. Very beautiful and graceful in its lighting and surface textures. If you go, pay special attention to the lighting fixtures. SO beautiful!)

  • Visited December 2012
    • Value
    • Atmosphere
    • Service
    • Food
Thank Karen J
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.

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