Best Brunch Spots in Beautiful Rio de Janeiro

You´re in Rio de Janeiro, you´re on vacation - what better way to while away the late morning than to tuck into a lavish spread that crosses the breakfast/lunch divide with style.

Brazilian breakfasts tend to be feasts in themselves, with cakes, fresh fruit, freshly-baked breads, cheeses and sliced cold meats all present and correct, alongside fresh-squeezed juices and wonderfully strong Brazilian coffee.

Brunch is not a concept that has taken off in Brazil - in fact, there's no Portuguese word for it, but nobody will bat an eyelid if you order breakfast items at noon. Our top pick,  Da Casa da Tata, offers indulgent breakfast and lunch spreads as well as a-la-carte sandwiches, soups and the like, while the cakes and cookies here are legendary accross the city.

At Pergula, Copacabana Palace hotel´s famously chic poolside restaurant, the Sunday brunch is an institution, with smoked salmon and Champagne both part of the indulgent offering. As one might expect, such luxury comes at a steep price, but for a special occasion it´s worth splashing out on. 

More down to earth prices can be found at Cafecito in Santa Teresa, which offers some of the best coffees in the city, while enjoying a lavish breakfast spread with sea views at Copacabana's Cafe 18 de Forte will get any day off to a good start. If you're hankering after hash browns, waffles or other homestyle North American goodies, meanwhile, it has to be Gringo Cafe, an ex-pat favorite in Ipanema.

A spot for those who take their coffee seriously, Alle Cafe offers some 50 types of blends to its discerning customers. Along with coffees made from the beans of small farms in the interior of Brazil, the cafe offers its clientele the chance to...  Read More

Located a few blocks from Ipanema beach and right next door to the strip of backpacker lodgings dubbed 'Hostel Alley', this health food store, buffet restaurant and snack bar offers a huge range of wholesome ingredients for self caterers as well...  Read More

For a taste of Rio's Belle Epoque past, head to this historic cafe-restaurant in downtown Rio. Ornate chandeliers and jacaranda wood mirrors make an elegant setting for breakfasts, brunches and afternoon teas, and this is the ideal place to...  Read More

Given its abundant supply of coffee beans, Brazil has been surprisingly slow to pick up on the coffee bar trend, but Cafeina is one spot where caffeine boosts are more inventive than simply with-or-without-milk. Alongside a range of...  Read More

For the ultimate indulgent Rio experience, head to the Pergula, the elegant poolside restaurant at the enduringly elegant Copacabana Palace hotel. Less formal than the hotel's fine dining Italian restaurant, Cipriani. at Pergula you can dine in...  Read More

Cultivar Brazil
Photo courtesy of Lucy Bryson

This small, unassuming, unsigned little lunch and brunch spot is a great option for anybody with an aversion to gluten or a preference for natural, organic ingredients. Alongside a range of wholemeal sweet and savory tarts and pies and some...  Read More

Your leisurely brunch comes with a refreshing sea breeze and stunning sea views at this al-fresco spot in the grounds of Copacabana Fort. Breakfast is served at several outdoor table and, while service can be a little on the slow side, who's...  Read More

Aimed squarely at North Americans with a hankering for taste of their homeland, Gringo Cafe does a roaring trade in US DIner-style favorites such as hash browns, bottomless coffees, pancakes, waffles and French toast, as well as delicious cakes,...  Read More

Photo courtesy of Lucy Bryson

Rio de Janeiro has traditionally been lacking coffee shops that have gone beyond with-or-without-milk, but this Argentine-owned spot in leafy Santa Teresa is one spot where a good cappuccino or cafe latte is guaranteed. Perfectly positioned...  Read More

A welcoming spot where staff go out of their way to make customers feel at home, Da Casa da Tata frequently crops up in food and drink magazines' 'Best of' lists, with its breakfasts in particular garnering rave reviews. The range of...  Read More


Meet Lucy Bryson

Lucy is a British freelance writer living in Rio de Janeiro since 2007. While there are some things she misses about her home country, the lure of year-round sunshine has proved too powerful to resist.