Facing out onto Copacabana beach, La Fiorentina has been part of the Rio restaurant scene for almost 60 years, and when you walk in you can feel the history. A large team of formally dressed waiters move expertly between tables, take orders and delivering delicious plates of seafood and pasta to hungry diners. Every dish is named after famous former patrons and signatures of the rich and famous cover the walls (I spotted John Malkovich’s scribble last time I was there!).
The restaurant is particularly known for its Espaguete com Frutos do Mar (Seafood Spaghetti) – a timeless classic flavoured with white wine, garlic and herbs. While the prices aren’t cheap, remember that you are in Brazil here – a starter/entrée will be good for 2 or 3 people to share and main course dishes are also very generous. One of the classic restaurants of Rio.
Pros: Delicious seafood in an atmosphere of timeless tradition.
Cons: Can get busy. The seafood is consistently great but last time I was there I had a fairly mediocre steak.
Address: Avenida Atlântica, 458 – Leme
Telephone: +55 (21) 2543-8395