Braseiro Restaurant: Steaks and the whole she-bang at just less than $20.

Remember the steak article that I did a year back regarding 28 Juicy Steaks under $30? Truth is, I never really got round to trying all those on the list for fear of gout. However, a year has past and it has been my fortune to be able to continue the stake out, this time extending my footprint to the far east of the island.

As far as affordable steaks go, Braserio in Joo Chiat is up there with my personal favourites of The Betterfield and iSTEAKS. It takes little convincing to know that you've stumbled upon a bargain; one step into the establishment and the throngs of diners, large families with every member working their way through individual steaks with voracious appetites affirming the affordable yet luxurious deal.

In the quick-evolving food-scape of Joo Chiat precinct, Braseiro has gone the mile to prove its mettle. With close to 3 years of business under its belt and a faithful following (judging from the clientele that night); it's safe to say that Braseiro will still be there when your mind is made up on a steak fix.

French founder, Alexandre Pini explains that the restaurant has had both Brazilian and French inspirations. You might be a bit quizzical about the French references but once you think about it, the marriage is inescapable. Brazilian Churrasco (Brazilian Barbecued meats) and French steak and frites. Too easy. The element of smoking lavishing the final humble affair with additional umami flavour.

And here's a fun fact, Braseiro located on 333 Joo Chiat Road puts a fun spin on their menu with 3 appetisers, 3 mains and 3 dessert options. It's uncanny, amusing and easy for the indecisive.

You can choose the well-trod path and just go ahead with the main affair and sides option - or fit in an appetiser to grace the table before the salacious affair. If so, the Fondue de Camembert ($15.90) gets my vote of confidence. The squeaky rinds revealing soft melty insides. All that is needed to complete this welcome throwback to the '90s is some lightly toasted white loaf halves. I admit to have been rather smitten with this sinful treat, and if weren't for the glaring stares of the little girl at the table next to mine, I would have devoured all of it in a single lonely attempt. 

The great divide happens at the mains, a toss up between Steak (rib-eye), Skewers and Roasted Chicken. Unlike most steakhouses, you are not smacked in the face with a plethora of choices; but its all good here, the purist will be appeased. Priced at $19.90 for a 200g portion across the board, food envy is rarely conjured UNLESS you're gunning for a larger portion in which the option to upsize only applies for the steak ($24.90 for 300g and $29.90 for 400g). As straightforward as the stark ambience of the restaurant is, there's no gimmick to the concept. $19.90 gets you free flow fries and salad. Chips are untainted by commercial viability, hand cut from potatoes with skin still in tact are deliciously salted and golden brown - a stalwart among Western food joints on local shores. Duly slather on your sauces (habernero mango, chili sauce, mayonnaise or ketchup) to enliven the affair. Trust me, carb monsters would be doing a happy dance with these bottomless baskets.

Enamoured by the stimulating spread of food in front of me, I only had eyes for one thing. The steak revealed its seductive pink insides to me, I closed in for the first kiss, and the pleasures of biting down on that fat-licked inundated slice is both physical and auditory. Beautifully cooked with an insinuation of smoke, I debated ordering 400g on my next visit. Oh, the gluttony.

Braseiro is where you go for simple pleasures. They are no pushing the envelope with their steaks, cuts or sauces. That's because you don't need bells and whistles on affordable steaks fresh off the grill with hand-cut chips. You go to Braseiro for the classics, and they're playing all the hits, on repeat. Every day of the week.

Braserio Restaurant
333 Joo Chiat Road

Operating Hours:
Mon - Thurs : 6pm - 11pm
Fri: 6pm - Midnight
Sat: 11am - 3pm; 6pm - Midnight
Sun: 11am - 3pm; 6pm - 11pm

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