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Bar Central

February 8, 2009


At lunchtime the bar is popular with local business people, lawyers and officials from the local administrative assembly and journalists from the nearby Journal do Commercio. They are attracted by the excellent menu: good quality food, served in generous portions, and good value for the money.

At night the bar attracts a loyal group of clients that locals would call an alternative crowd: musicians, artists, writers, and poets, many of whom live locally. It is also gay and lesbian friendly, but mixed.

The place is quite small with real character and atmosphere. Inside the decoration is interesting with one wall covered by a large areal map of Recife. The opposite wall above the serving hatch has a very nice photograph of an old aircraft flight over the river which runs close to the bar. Upstairs is a mezzanine floor, which often has a temporary exhibition of images by a local photographer. A final feature of the bar is the juke box, which has a great collection of classic national and international music.  The bar gets busy at night, especially on weekends, and tables spill out onto the pavement and road immediately in front.

The usual range of bottled beers and drinks are offered, as well as a good selection of cachaças (the sugar cane spirit used in Brazil´s national drink, Caipirinha). If you want beer, order a baldi (bucket filled with ice) to keep a few Bohemia beers at perfect temperature, and within arms reach.

At night the bar still serves full meals, but it is also good to select snacks from the large and interesting offering, which includes local and international tastes: everything from caldinhos (traditional small soups), to samosas, to  iscas de frango (deep fried chicken strips in a sesame seed batter).

The waiters and waitresses strike a perfect balance of being professional, efficient and friendly.  It works well for the customers and for the staff, among whom there is very little turnover. Always a good sign!

If there is one disadvantage to this place, it is the location. The bar is located downtown in a place that is not particularly easy to get to, and not very safe to be in late at night. It is, therefore, necessary to get there and back by taxi.  A taxi to, or from, Boa Viagem is around R$15-20, and to or from Olinda would be a similar price.

Rua Mamede Simões 144, Boa Vista (Downtown). (81) 3222 7622. Mon-Fri 12am-2am; Sat 8pm-2am; Sun closed.  MAP

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