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Winter Warm-Up

Winter warm-up. Looking for a restaurant that will keep winter's chill at bay while heating up your group dinner or special event? You'll find plenty of options around the Chicago area, from rustic dining rooms with toasty fireplaces to a Brazilian steakhouse that puts on a sizzling fire pit show. Fogo de Chao. You're in for a fiery good time at Fogo de Chao, a genuine Brazilian steakhouse in Chicago's River North. The restaurant's name, which literally means "fire on the ground," refers to a traditional gathering around the fire with good food, family and friends. A dramatic fire pit used for flame-roasting meats takes center stage, while a crackling fireplace keeps things toasty in the dining room. Roaming gauchos, dressed in stylish pleated trousers and leather boots, continually serve guests more than 15 flavorful choices of meats (including beef, lamb and pork) that are carved tableside and prepared to each diner's taste. More than just servers, the gauchos are chefs who have been trained in the Brazilian churrasco cooking tradition. Authentic side dishes include crispy polenta and sweet fried bananas, which are replenished throughout the meal. Greens are not forgotten here, with a salad bar that features loads of fresh vegetables. Diners use disks to signal the gauchos when they would like the meat service; green means go, red means stop (for a little while, anyway). This device allows diners to pace their own meals, making it particularly useful for groups that may need down time for speeches or making a toast. Fogo de Chao's private dining areas feature richly colored Brazilian landscapes on the walls. The semi-private dining room accommodates up to 65 seated guests, while the private area holds a maximum of 40 people. In-house audio-visual equipment is available.


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