If the weather is lousy, a pub-crawl can be a socio-cultural-gastronomical method of anthropologically observing locals while getting hammered… so… perfecto-mundo!
Of course, you don’t want to go it alone or with just one friend, as that can get boring or repetitive. So my idea is for everyone doing a crawl around Ipanema and Leblon to be at the established times and places mentioned here, so you can make new friends and have fresh conversations. Flash this book on your table, so others recognize you. Or you can hire my services, which don’t cost anything, just my beer expenses.
Don’t have breakfast or lunch before starting. This pub-crawl route is designed to get you to discover Ipanema and Leblon’s bars, taste all the popular Brazilian bar foods and snacks and of course, to get tipsy. An average of 2 beers and 45 minutes per bar is a good pace to keep. Also, before leaving, write your hotel’s name and room on your arm with a thick marker, so the hospital knows where to send you.
Go to any pharmacy (farmacia) and ask for 4 ENGOVs per person in your group, a hang-over deterrent. Take two each.
- Brasileirinho at 1pm
Brasileirinho, on Rua Jangadeiros on Praça General Osorio is the eastern most bar in Ipanema. Order a chopp and some pastel de angu (corn-crust beef pasties).
- 2) Belmonte
Belmonte’s winner snack is the pastel de camarão (shrimp fried wonton), which they manage to stuff with 13 shrimps. Their other prized item is the empada de camarão (shrimp cupcake). If you’re not into shrimp, ask for carne seca (jerked beef). Their Brahma chopp is top notch.
- Manuel & Joaquim
Bolinho de bacalhau (cod cake balls), is their specialty.
- delirium Cafe
Microbrew mecca, with a trillion labels to choose from.
- Raiz 3:30pm
Very good all round gastro-bar. The classiest spot you will visit today. If you need to go potty, this is it!
- Garota de Ipanema
The chopp is great and their portion of “kibe” stands out from the rest.
- Bartodomeu 6pm
Great Brahma beer, while their cheese-stuffed sausage (calabresa recheada com queijo), if the fat doesn’t kill you, is to die for. On completing this, if still tipsy and not drunk, get in a cab and head to your next destination, Leblon.
- Bracarense 7pm
Their Empada de camarão (shrimp cupcake), is amongst Rio’s best.
- Academia da Cachaça
Linguica acebolada (onion with fried sausage). Seriously consider the caipirinhas here, as they are world-class.
- Chico & Alaide 9pm
Cab to the beginning of Rua Dias Ferreira. Their angle is kick-ass cod-fish cakes, so order 2 bolinho de bacalhau per person.
- Belmonte (again, yes!)
This Belmonte feels more like a tapas bar, and so it packs with hot women, which in turn attracts guys (not necessarily hot, but definitely hungry!)
- Brewteco 11pm
Mostly guys appreciating local micro-brews… what could be better?
Pours one of Rio’s top chopp. Also has good finger foods, but carne seca com aipim frito (fried cassava with jerked beef) is a must.
- Pizzaria Vezpa
Rio’s end of the night stop for those not getting any. Their extra crunchy New York style pizza is a good substitute.
- Engov and Coconut
Engov only works if you take it again at the end of the night, so take two or three and chug a coconut water or two.
By now you should be pretty plastered. So get in a cab and show the driver your hotel card. You can drive drunk, as long as you don’t turn the car on.