| For our first night in Bonito, in Mato Grosso do Sul, Brazil we had a lovely dinner at the family-owned attractive Juanita Restaurante. For Chef Juanita, the restaurant is a childhood dream come true. Arriving in Bonito in 2006, she opened her eponymous restaurant in 2014. Having an ancestry of French, Italian, and Paraguayan, she brings a rich culinary background to the table.
Juanita Restaurante located a short distance from the center of Bonito is an attractive restaurant where an excellent menu (in Portuguese and in English) and a warm ambience awaits visitors. Artisanal wood tables and chairs, red window treatments tied with colorful sashes enhance the windows, regional artwork grace the bright yellow walls, and hanging wrought iron lamps add light and give the restaurant charm.
Guavira Caipirinha cocktails
We had a wonderful dinner at Juanita Restaurant on March 18, 2019 where we began our evening with Guavira Caipirinha cocktails. Caipirinhas are the classic cocktail of Brazil made with cachaça, the national spirit of Brazil, and for the Guavira Caipirinha cocktail they mixed cachaça, lime juice, sugar, and juice from the guavira, a regional berry-like fruit, to create a very tasty and delectable cocktail. It was our first taste of one of the unique regional fruits of Mato Grosso do Sul and we loved it.
Paçu en Brasa
Mato Grosso do Sul takes pride in their wonderful selection of freshwater fish, and we selected one of the "stars" on their menu, Paçu en Brasa. The grilled moist, flavorful, and boneless fish, a relative of the piranha, arrived sizzling hot on a platter topped with capers and accompanied by sautéed broccoli, potatoes, white rice, their house specialty of fried banana manioc (cassava) farofa made with fried bananas and manioc flour, and pirão de pintado, a "fish gravy" made from pintado (a freshwater catfish) broth and manioc flour. It was a great introduction to regional ingredients of Mato Grosso do Sul and to the talented Chef Juanita who shares kitchen duties with her brother. A family owned restaurant, Juanita's son Jean Pierri joined the restaurant in 2015 and is the gracious front of house restaurant manager.
Although we opted to enjoy freshwater fish for dinner, the restaurant also has a nice selection of meat courses including the more exotic jacaré (alligator), as well as vegetarian and pasta dishes. The restaurant had a lovely selection of desserts on the menu, however the entrée was so plentiful, we had to forego sampling any of them.
Juanita Restaurante is open Wednesday through Monday for lunch from 11:00 am until 2:30 pm, and for dinner from 6:30 pm until 10:30 pm. The restaurant is closed on Tuesdays.
To learn more about Juanita Restaurante please visit their Facebook page: www.facebook.com/juanitarestaurante/
Rua Nossa Senhorada Penha, 854
Centro, Bonito, Mato Grosso do Sul (MS)
Telephone: +55 (67) 3255-1924
Read more about our experiences in Brazil inthe Pantanal and Bonito in the Destinations, Hotels and Resorts, Restaurants, Chefs' Recipes, and Adventures sections.
• Grilled Paçu en Brasa at the Juanita Restaurante -https://youtu.be/i-Q8jjOuyfs
Important Travel Information:
We used Agência Ygarapé for expert and professional tour information and booking our adventures. The agency has been providing high-quality, attentive service for tours, packages, accommodations, and transport services and more for over 20+years, serving Bonito and the Pantanal region.
Please visit their site for more information (site is available in English, Portuguese, and Spanish): www.ygarape.com.br.
Agência Ygarapé is open daily from 7:00 am until 9:00 pm (and until 10:00 pm during high season).
RuaCoronel Pilad Rebuá, 1853, Centro
Bonito, Mato Grosso do Sul (MS)
Telephone: +55 (67)3255-1733
Cellular: +55 (67) 99213-7374
For more information on Bonito and Pantanal, please visit: http://www.visitbrasil.com/en/destinos/bonito.html, http://www.visitbrasil.com/pt/destinos/bonito.html
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