Thursday, December 24, 2015

Fogo de Chao- More like Fogo de Wow

Restaurant: Fogo de Chao
Address: 1900 Hughes Landing Boulevard, The Woodlands, Texas 77380
Buffet or a-la-carte: Buffet
Date of visit: 11/27/15

Photo Credit:

Salam/hey guys! Welcome to my latest review! Today I will be reviewing what is possibly the fanciest and most expensive place on this blog. That place is Fogo de Chao. Well, why would I review a place like Fogo de Chao? Two reasons: one, halal lamb. And two, a FREE DINNER! Now before I continue reviewing, I would just like to make it clear that I am not being paid to do any reviews including this one. All my reviews are completely unbiased. If I notice some mistakes, I will write it. If I didn't like something, whether it's the food or the service, I will write it.
Believe it or not, the lamb at Fogo de Chao is actually halal! A page called Halal Food Nation had actually called up the corporate office of Fogo de Chao and even the lamb distributor and asked about the lamb being halal, and the answer was yes. I have attached below the confirmation from the group itself about the lamb being halal.

The people have also verified with the supplier that the lamb is halal. They often update, so they are a reliable source. Fogo de Chao has restaurants in nearly every major city in America, in Puerto Rico, and in Brazil. This one is on the location in the Woodlands. They have another location on Westheimer next to Saravanaa Bhavan. Anyways, I saw on the Houston Food Bloggers Collective Facebook Group that Fogo de Chao is having a special where members would eat for free there. I decided to take that opportunity and go there on Black Friday. I first asked my parents, but then they told me to take friends. So I told my friends about it. waited until the day came, and then went to the restaurant.

Let The Experience Begin!
It was a really long drive from Cypress to the restaurant. It's located on Hughes Landing, next to other higher end restaurants. We qualified for free valet parking (yay!) and went in the restaurant. I confirmed the reservation with the person in the front and we were taken to the table. After being asked what to drink, we were ready to eat.

Let's Eat!
The way it works here is that a server introduces himself/herself and then explains how the churrasacaria works. Basically, you have a card where one side says "Sim por favor" ("Yes please" in Portuguese) and the other side says "Nao Obrigado" ("No thank you" in Portuguese). And, you can eat as much meat as you desire, and they would come to the table and actually carve out the meat and give it to you. We told them that we would like lamb only and that we don't eat pork (It's important you say that as South America is a popular place for pork). The server did help us out saying that the specific items had pork in it. A dilemma came as the server wasn't too sure about how to make the lamb since the marinade usually contains white wine  The server then said that it could be prepared with just lemon pepper. Disaster averted! So after the requests were taken, we were off to the appetizer area. The appetizer area was so big that it could be a legitimate meal. There were so many options to choose from, including vegetarian and seafood items. Along with the lamb chops and the leg of lamb, I got the following for appetizers: regular salad, potato salad, sun-dried tomatoes, roasted peppers, bread, imported cheeses, mozzarella cheese, smoked salmon, fresh tomato, and ranch. There is also an unlimited supply of Brazilian cheese bals (pao de queijo), polenta, and fried bananas. All of this food for free! Now if you want to eat here on another day, expect to pay at least $30 for lunch and $50 for dinner.

Nothing else in the menu is halal. They do have seafood, but it's not part of the churrascaria experience. Again, you can literally eat as many appetizers are you want, as it is very extensive. An interesting fact is that all the servers cook the food by themselves and then they serve it to you.

Regular salad, potato salad, roasted peppers, bread, imported cheeses, mozzarella cheese, and smoked salmon

Fried Banana

Pao de Queijo (Cheese bread balls)

Lamb chop (no white wine in any meat), imported cheeses, salad with ranch, and sun-dried tomatoes



Lamb chop, imported cheeses, salad with ranch, fresh tomato, and some potato salad

Leg of Lamb

How they serve the meat at Fogo de Chao

The Verdict:
Despite the high prices on a regular day, I will tell you that each and every penny spent towards eating here is absolutely worth it. Both lamb dishes were excellent and had a lot of flavor. We were literally addicted to the pao de queijo. I lost count of how many I had after about 10. I also loved the polenta and the mashed potatoes. All the appetizers were of high quality and was very fresh. Two thumbs up for the food.
Overall, the service was great! The people were friendly and they literally didn't mind four college students literally eating their butts off, that too with one of my friends in t-shirt and jeans (It's recommended you go in business casual). The person in the front was very nice as well.

I would recommend Fogo de Chao if you're going for a business lunch/dinner or if it's a special occasion. For the person dining in and wanting to eat halal, I have a tip for you: make a reservation. When making the reservation, ask them to not put any white wine in the lamb dishes, and ask them to just use the lemon pepper that we asked for. Also, tell them that you just want lamb and no other meat. Eat all the appetizers you want.
Now for Fogo de Chao, I have two tips for you. Firstly, you should consider exporting halal meat directly from Brazil. Brazil is actually one of the largest exporters of halal meat in the world. Nearly half of the meat that is exported from Brazil is halal-certified. You can find all the cuts that you guys use in your restaurants but with halal meat, as the halal meat market is constantly growing in demands and is being enjoyed by many all over the world. The second tip I have is that you could have some seafood items (salmon, shrimp, scallops with no bacon, sea bass, etc.) on your churrascaria menu. There are other Brazilian steakhouses that do have that and they are enjoyed by many. I believe that it would be successful alongside the sea bass you sell at Bar Fogo. 

Service: 9/10
Food: 9/10
Total: 18/20 = 90% (A)
Pricing: $$$$ out of $$$$

Fogo de Chao
1900 Hughes Landing Boulevard, The Woodlands, Texas 77380
Phone: (281) 298-4200

Monday - Thursday: 11 AM - 2 PM for lunch and 5 PM - 10 PM for dinner
Friday: 11 AM - 2 PM for lunch and 5 PM - 10:30 PM for dinner
Saturday: 4:00 PM - 10:30 PM
Sunday: 11 AM - 2 PM for lunch and 3 PM - 9 PM for dinner

Caters: No
Private dining for special events and groups available
Reservation allowed

Feel free to comment below, send me an email, or message me on Facebook

Zain Mohammed

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