R. do Rosário, 135 – Centro
Rio de Janeiro
Delírio Tropical is something like a Brazilian Panera, catering to the lunch rush with a variety of (relatively) healthy salads and sandwiches. For a first time visitor the choices may be somewhat daunting, as is the ordering process. You are handed a printed menu of choices (which changes daily), you then go and pay at the front and then go back to the counter and hand the sandwich maker your ticket: there is a different area of the counter for salads, sandwiches and desserts. Okay, maybe that is not so complicated, but when the restaurant is jam packed, loud and elbows are flying, it seems a little more confusing.
The main stock in trade of Delírio Tropicala is mix-and-match salad bowls and sandwiches. M got a double salad bowl (R$ 15.90) with 1/2 Quinoa Salad and 1/2 Caesar salad. Other salad options included Tabbouleh, the “Mineirinha” with zucchini, tomatoes, onions, black olives and Parmesan, and the “Fernanda” with chard, mango, strawberry, and kiwi, among other options. The salad menu changes daily, so you are never short on choice. L ordered (after a great deal of confusion on ordering processes and M then messing up her order again) a worth-the-wait chicken caesar wrap on “pao arabe” – what Brazilians call flatbread. There is also the option to build your own sandwiches, or additionally pick from soups, quiches and crepes. At the end of the counter is a variety of sweets including the intriguingly named “brigadeiro cone.”
There is a little area in front to sit, or a more tables on the second floor. However most people seemed to take their food to go in little paper bags. We definitely understand why this place was so busy with the Centro office crowd during lunch. It was a nice change of pace from heavier fare and fried salgadinhos. Maybe next time we will even try to brigadeiro cone!