Here is the thing about Brazilian steakhouses: They are all the same. Not similar, but die-cast replicas. They have precisely the same pretty-as-plastic vegetables in their salad bars, the same hunks of seared meat being shuffled through the dining room by dudes in amusing/dashing gaucho costumes, the same blandly fancy decor that brings to mind the hotel banquet hall you went to for your boss’ daughter’s wedding.
Enter Chama Gaucha, a perfectly decent alternative just up the street from Fogo de Chao in Buckhead. The dining room is a bit smaller and the pāo de queijo cheese puffs a bit more scrumptious — gooier and crisper. There are fat shrimp and fatty beef short ribs along with the expected cuts of sirloin and round.
And the service is terrific: Where else do you and your dining companion return from the salad bar to find two waiters standing and smiling at your table, holding your chairs and your napkins?
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