Looking for a steakhouse experience, but want to try something a little different? Chama Gaucha Brazilian Steakhouse has got you covered. Located in the Houston Galleria area, the steakhouse offers a menu complete with traditional “churrascaria:” selections of beef, pork, lamb, chicken and shrimp served on skewers. There is also an enormous salad bar with different selections of salads, soups, cheeses and charcuterie.
If you are looking for something lighter, Chama Gaucha recently launched all new lunch and dinner menu options. Now in addition to the unlimited tableside gaucho experience, you can choose from the new lighter menu which includes: your favorite cut of meat, two sides and a choice of homemade soup or salad. The new menu also includes Chama’s Summer Salad which is grilled shrimp served on a bed of spinach and iceberg lettuce with bacon, blue cheese, red onion, shredded carrots and sliced avocado.
I was excited to try Chama Gaucha because I just might be one of the few people in Houston who had never had an unlimited tableside experience. Once seated, you are given a card. The green side signals to the waiter that you want to continue being served or, if you decide you need a little break, you turn your card over. The red side tells the waiter to hold off for a while. You are also served a delicious little basket of pão de queijo (cheese bread) which is the most delicious piece of bread you will ever try. The bread is small, light and fluffy with the unmistakable taste of cheese. Don’t worry if you devour the first basket within a couple of minutes – they will keep bringing more until you tell them to stop. Once you are settled in and have had a chance to order a caipirinha (traditional Brazilian cocktail), make your way to the salad bar. You’ll be tempted to fill up on all the fresh goodies, but don’t give in to temptation, because the best part of your meal has yet to come.
My salad was done and I was feeling good after having a few sips of my caipirinha, so I turned my card over to the green side and waited for my table service to begin. I didn’t have to wait long. A waiter dressed as a traditional gaucho (Brazilian cowboy) came over with a mouthwatering skewer of meat. I was lucky enough to try the house specialty first, The Pichana (prime cut of sirloin) was cooked to perfection. The meat was juicy, tender and so tasty. I could have gone home a happy woman just eating that, but my Brazilian dinner experience had just begun. Gauchos kept the meaty goodness coming with pieces of filet, shrimp, rack of lamb and ribeye.
There are so many options and they are all so good – I was reluctant to turn my card to the red side.
The restaurant is decorated nicely and the night I was there it was filled with families, couples and large groups. There was never a wait for anything and, if I wanted a certain cut of meat, all I had to do was request it and it was sent over within minutes. I really enjoyed the Brazilian drink which is made from lime, condensed milk and water. It was light and refreshing – a great addition to the meat items. I would be remiss not to mention the sides of asparagus, polenta and fried plantains all of which were delicious.
I can’t say enough good things about Chama Gaucha Brazilian Steakhouse. It truly has something for everyone. If eating light is what you are looking for, their new menu is perfect, but if you want to have a traditional Brazilian churrascaria experience, order unlimited tableside service and you won’t be disappointed.
Gabi De la Rosa lives in Houston, Texas with her husband and three kids. If you don’t find her in front of her computer you’ll likely find her exploring Houston with her family.