On Friday night, Martha and Nick took me to dinner, and it was a new spot among St. John's restaurants: Rio Brazilian Restaurant, on Torbay Road. It's on the intersection with Newfoundland Drive, taking up the space of a former Pizza Exprerts restaurant.
It's an interesting concept: you're seated at a table and invited to check out the salad bar (which also features, oddly enough, chicken nuggets, I guess for families with young kids) before the main event happens. Everyone pays about $27 for a meal (except for drinks desserts), and you can keep the food coming until you turn the green card on your table over, and leave the red side facing up: the visual cue to the staff that you've had enough.
Every few minutes, a server comes by with a long, two-pronged barbecue stick with a type of meat. It may be sirloin, it may be pork ribs, it may be chicken wings. If you want some, they'll off a slice ... or two, or three. It's an all-you-can-eat affair, so no one's judging. We loved the lamb, and had different preferences for other things, like sausages and beef ribs. Martha was delighted to have cod and shrimp offered up. My seafood allergies, of course, had me choosing sirloin and lamb.
There's more to choose from, too: barbecued pineapple, which we liked, and grapefruit and banana given the same treatment, which didn't catch my fancy. We also waited a bit for some of the All the same, it's a fun way to eat, especially with a group; we noticed a number of tables were quite enjoying themselves.
Rio does not offer fine dining, so expectations need to be in check. As well, if you're not hungry or only need an appetizer, this is not the place to come. But for a night out with the family and/or friends, I'd recommend it. We didn't feel rushed, and we enjoyed a night of food and conversation.
It's also nice to see a new alternative in the city for restaurant choices, especially one that's in walking distance of our neighbourhood.
Above is yours truly with my new glasses ... or at least new to my head. I bought them in June when we were on the road, and they've effectively been sitting in my dresser waiting for me to get around to getting an update on my prescription. (One of the vagaries of age: your eyes don't get any better!)
I bought the frames at a stall at the Brooklyn Flea, the one in Fort Greene, to be precise. It's quite the event: dozens of vendors, with everything under the (hot) sun, from records to lemonade to pickles to robot collections to belts ... and on and on. That day, there were at least three vendors selling frames. My colleague Kathryn had recommended the stop, and I'm glad we went. The frames are a good fit, and it's nice that they were a good buy, too.
On his YouTube channel, Pat Metheny has a series of solo performances of songs he loved growing up. I was surprised to see a cover of Antonio Carlos Jobim's Girl From Ipanema; it turns out that an attempt to learn a chord gave him the opening sound of a song he knew well from the radio.
Dot Dot Dot is Morse code for the letter 'S,' the full message Guglielmo Marconi claimed to have received atop Signal Hill in St. John's in 1901. It ushered in the age of telecommunications. My maternal grandfather worked as a telegraph operator for Canadian Marconi on Signal Hill for many years.
As well, I have a habit of overusing the ellipsis when I write ... as frequent readers might notice.