Tag Archives: Springroll

From caipirinhas to gyozas: a weekend in São Paulo Part 1

16 Jul

A couple of weekends ago was my friend Juliana’s birthday and we all went out to a club to celebrate! What was supposed to be a one night celebration extended itself into the whole long weekend (Monday was a holiday in the state of São Paulo)! Not wanting our college reunion to end, we all decided to stay and enjoy the city a little bit. So this brings us to part 1 of my post about my long weekend with tips of things to do in São Paulo!

Ballroom. Image courtesy of http://vejasp.abril.com.br/

First stop! For her birthday bash, Juliana chose a club called Ballroom, which opened its doors October of last year after months of renovation (since the building previously housed another club called Heaven). Located at the intersection of Rua Augusta and Rua Estados Unidos, the space is inspired by Viennese Ballrooms of the XVIII century and is designed by architect Jorge Elias. Chandeliers and velvet curtains set the mood in the dance floor, which has several VIP areas surrounding it that are available for reservations. The DJ spins mostly house music and that particular Saturday we heard a lot of good remixes! Known for its steep prices, men pay minimum R$200 and women R$80, you’ll find a caipirinha to be about R$30 and an imported beer around R$18. We were in a pretty big group and we all had a lot of fun. No lines for drinks or bathrooms, and a lot of good looking people!

Inspired by Viennese ballrooms. Image courtesy of http://portal.belezarevelada.com.br/

The next day we woke up pretty late and decided to go have lunch at Liberdade, a neighborhood in São Paulo home to the largest Japanese community outside of Japan, and a significant amount of Chinese and Korean people.

Liberdade neighborhood in São Paulo.

Although the weather wasn’t the best for an outdoor fair –cold winds and light rain—the place was packed! People were getting in line for the different booths selling a variety of Japanese and Chinese food. We decided to try these huge spring rolls and shrimp tempura that everyone around us was eating. At R$5 each, these spring rolls were a delicious bargain! I could have eaten more, but we had heard of a famous gyoza stand and were eager to try those out too! The line was huuuuge, which definitely made us feel like they would be worth it! You had to take a number and wait to be called. When they called your number, you placed your order and paid up. Only R$3,50 for a huge gyoza and, believe it or not, they were even more delicious than the spring rolls! Good thing we were in a big group, because we could share everything and still save some space for the traditional yakisoba! We got two of the small servings, which cost about R$12, but had nothing small about them! All the servings were perfect to share!

Gyoza. Part of Chinese and Japanese cuisines. Image courtesy of http://nakasablog.wordpress.com

When everyone was done eating we decided to walk around. The streets are filled with references from the Japanese community and on weekdays you’ll find women shopping for their daily groceries. There are several stores that sell Japanese and Chinese products and we were excited to explore each one –although the boys were definitely not! Since it was a holiday, not all stores were open, but we were lucky to find a huge cosmetic store that has low prices you won’t find anywhere else! We bought all kinds of nail polish, hair products, and make-up accessories and left feeling pretty awesome. Besides a great lunch, we also found some great deals!

Crowded streets despite the weather

Liberdade is worth a visit on Saturdays or Sundays! Get to know the place and grab a bite!

Hope you liked it and stay tuned for part 2, with more great tips!

-Randa

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