Meat, Meat, Meat, Meat, Meat MEAT!
Ok, now that I have that out of my system, I can get down to discussing the pros and cons of Edinburgh’s churrascaria, Zico’s. On a cold night, Blythe, my flatmate and her boy toy met at the Brazilian place near the Conference Centre on Morrison Street. The first thing that struck me upon entering and being seated was the lack of alcohol served, but Rachel and Luke came to the rescue with a good bottle of red. The second thing that hits you in the face is the decor, it was very much in the realm of Mexican restaurant, or something of the sort. I’m not sure what a Brazilian churrascaria should look like, but I didn’t expect the bright walls and general ambiance. Not that it was bad, mind, just…unexpected.
We all came to this place for one reason: meat. And to keep the meat coming, you leave your wee coaster with the green side up and in theory, they keep bringing you meat on large skewers and slicing off huge chunks of freshly grilled joy. In actuality, it was organised so that the newest tables get served faster and more frequently as a way to match hunger with service. This, can, in our case, backfire as we still wanted more meat after the service slowed.
That being said, there are some good things on offer at Zico’s. For instance, I had my first chicken heart, and it was tasty and simply prepared. The lamb was delicious as were the chicken drumsticks.
The honey glazed gammon was a bit too salty for my tastes and the beef was sometimes tough, sometimes nice, and the pineapple was nothing special, and would have served as a nice end of meal skewer instead of punctuating the whole meal like not entirely welcome clockwork.
The salad bar was small, but decent, with what was there fresh and crisp.
Overall, I’d not rush back unless I needed meat and needed it right then, as long as I had the patience to get my fill.
This evening’s entertainment was focussed on churrascaria, the Brazilian tradition of places serving skewer cooked meats accompanied by an excellent array of hot and cold options served in the salad bar style.
On the latter, I have to say that the Glasgow places far exceed what’s on offer at Zico’s. This place is relatively small, so there simply isn’t the space for the sheer range of dishes, but what is available is much more along the lines of a traditional salad bar. For experienced churrascaria goers, this will be a disappointment.
What is good, though, is the meat, and given that that was the main focus of our attention, we all left heartily contented.
Indeed, we all left full of hearts, given that chicken hearts were one of the cuts on offer.
In addition, we sampled topside and silverside beef, nice nuggets of lamb, garlic pork, gammon and pineapple, sausages, chicken legs and thighs, and ribs.
We tucked in with considerable relish, eating a colossal amount of meat protein. The highlights were the lamb and the chicken, along with the chicken hearts, for sheer novelty value.
For now, they have no alcohol license, so remember to bring your own booze.
Overall, the meat on offer at Zico’s was very tasty. The “salad bar” was rather disappointing, so those with a previous acquaintance with the churrascaria experience won’t be blown away by this place. But I’m glad that Edinburgh now has one of these, and imagine we’ll get another few appearing, in the next few months. Very well suited to group dining, this place will do just fine, and has a solid opportunity to improve from a good starting point.
MJ scores Zico’s
3/5 for food
3/5 for presentation
2.5/5 for service
2.5/5 for setting
giving an overall 11/20
Blythe scores Zico’s
3.5/5 for food
3/5 for presentation
3/5 for service
3.5/5 for setting
giving an overall 13/20
Today’s questers were: MJ, Rachel, Luke, Blythe
We ate: MEAT!
We drank: BYO red wine, water
We wore: wintry apparel
Total bill: £69.80