Recently I had the opportunity to visit the new Saboroso Brazilian Steakhouse in Saskatoon that opened in September, 2011 and I can say the name is very fitting. Saboroso – In Brazil, saboroso (adj.) meaning: alluring, attractive, enticing, inviting, luscious, mouth-watering, palatable, savory, savoury, tasteful, tasty, tempting, toothsome. Normally going to a “steakhouse” isn’t my first choice as I don’t eat red meat or pork but had heard good things about it, and it was an opportunity to catch up with my clients and see how they are enjoying their new Saskatoon home.
Saboroso is located at 2600 8th Street East which is the old Kelsey’s restaurant building. One of my two clients that we were dining with had previously been there and luckily knew to get reservations ahead of time. Upon arriving there was a long wait of people at the door. Many of the people waiting didn’t have reservations and most were being told they were full for the entire night and were being turned away. Even with a reservation it took us about 5 – 10 minutes to be seated. The first lesson is that if you are interested in going make sure you make a reservation as this place is popular and I don’t foresee that changing anytime soon. Once entering into the restaurant I was very impressed with the decor. For anyone who had been to Kelsey’s that was previously in this location wouldn’t even recognize the interior. They have completely remodelled the interior and have modernized it and have a clean and modern decor. The seating arrangements provide two options for groups. The first being a traditional table for larger groups with the second being a U shaped table for 4 or less people. We were seated at on the U shape tables which were a bit different but once we started eating made sense. Within a few minutes of being seated our waiter came over and provided menus and the wine list and inquired if we had been there previously. As most of us hadn’t he provided us an overview of how everything worked. You basically have two options for dining. The first option is the traditional menu where you can order a main dish with the second option being the “Rodizio” which I will get into in a second. Not being a red meat eater I opted to order a main dish off the menu which was the Rio Tiger Shrimp. The other people in my group were red meat eaters and all opted for the Rodizio.
The Rodizio option basically provides you access to a self service side bar that consists of salads, vegetables and starches. You have the option to visit this as many times throughout your meal. Now for the real part of the Rodizio which is the meat and when I say meat I am talking tons of meat! Basically what happens is that there are Gaucho’s (basically waiters) walking throughout the restaurant all of the time each with a different type of meat. The meat is on long skewers and the Gaucho’s stop at your table and cut off a piece and continue on. Combined there is 9 kinds of meat and 1 pineapple on the menu that are included and circulating which include: Picanhacut, Bacon wrapped Filet Mignon Medallions, Beef Tenderloin, Ribeye Steak, Garlic Parmesan Striploin , Chicken Drumsticks, Linguica Sausage Garlic, Pork Loin, Leg of Lamb, and Pineapple. As a result you have an ongoing amount of Gaucho’s stopping at your table offering you more meat which rotates and provides lots of options. The amount of meat is unlimited and basically until you tell them to stop. They have cleverly located wooden cubes on each table with one side green and one side red. If you want the Gaucho’s to continue to walk by you leave the green side up and if you are full or need a break you can put the red side up and they will bypass your table. For those people in my group that opted for the Rodizio they were immediately able to start eating. My dish took about 15 minutes to come out so one thing to consider if you have a mixture of people.
Now for the review of the food… as I mentioned I opted for the Rio Tiger Shrimp which was excellent. The portion was generous and the food was prepared very well. As far as the Rodizio, I may have sampled the chicken and can say that it was absolutely delicious. Based on the reviews from everyone else all indications are that the meat was excellent. From our group the favourites were the lamb, chicken, and ribeye steak. Everyone agreed that there wasn’t a bad option as everyone tried each kind of meat but some stood out more than others.
I definitely recommend this restaurant to anyone visiting or living in Saskatoon. It is a unique and great addition to the Saskatoon restaurant scene. The atmosphere is energetic, and a lot of fun with a group of people. The cost is reasonable for the quality and the portion of food. Even as a non-red meat eater I had a very enjoyable time and enjoyed my meal. Be sure to make reservations prior and note that the restaurant is only open for supper. The doors open at door but they don’t start serving Rodizio until 5pm. When you decide to go make sure you bring your appetite!