Have you ever had Brazilian churrasco? If yes, you know how much fun it can be. If not, discover it in Santa Fe. Omira Bar & Grill serves these Brazilian-style grilled meats along with a tempting salad bar.
The sleek and contemporary eatery is located in a nondescript strip mall where Cerrillos Road and St. Francis Drive converge. It has seating for 100 in both the bar and the spacious dining room. While there are some tables, a lot of the seating is in booths that run along the sides of the dining rooms.
The bountiful salad bar — Photo courtesy of Steve Collins
Omira serves both lunch and dinner. They offer two dining options: salad bar only or churrasco, which showcases unlimited Brazilian-inspired grilled meats as well as the full salad bar. Both options are “all you can eat.”
The salad bar has an impressive assortment of appetizers, salads, soups, sides and even an entrée. Both vegetarians and vegans can eat well by grazing at the bar.
Carnivores: Go with the full Monty. There are at least eight grilled selections, including various preparations of beef, pork, chicken, lamb and sausages. Grass-fed meat is sourced from local farms whenever possible. Sometimes it’s even organic.
“We don’t have a set menu,” says Co-owner Ziggy Rzig. “[We] try to use the freshest ingredients and switch it up.”
Omira's contemporary dining room — Photo courtesy of Steve Collins
Each table is equipped with a small lamp in the center. When you’re ready for meat, turn on the light and the servers will stop at your table with large skewers in hand. Each diner is issued a pair of small tongs. As the server carves the meat, you grab it with these so it won’t fall.
A few things are bite-sized and just taken off the skewer and put onto your plate. Some meats like ribs arrive on platters.
Want to take a break? Turn off the light, and you’re off the delivery rotation. Want a bit more? Turn it back on.
In between meat deliveries, you can return to the salad bar for sides, salad or anything else that catches your eye. Unlike many restaurants where huge portions sit on the buffet table, at Omira, all dishes are made in small batches to assure that everything is fresh.
Want meat? Turn on your light — Photo courtesy of Steve Collins
Husband and wife team Ziggy and Sally Rzig opened Omira in June 2013. They’re a truly international couple, and it shows in the cuisine. He was born and raised in Tunisia, and she’s of Laotian descent, with four generations of cooking in her family background.
Ziggy, who has a restaurant background, runs the front of the house and Sally is the executive chef. The grill’s name is an amalgam of their son’s and daughter’s names.
Meat cooks on the rotisserie in Omira's kitchen — Photo courtesy of Steve Collins
Not a glutton? You can still enjoy Omira without coming out feeling like a blimp. Ziggy’s suggestion: do it tapas style. Taste a little bit of each dish, but don’t take a lot of any. Once you’ve tried them all, if you're still hungry, indulge in more of your favorite dishes sampled.
Tired of New Mexican food or expensive fusion meals while visiting Santa Fe? Or maybe you just want something interesting and different? Head for Omira, where Ziggy and Sally will make sure you get all you can eat, and then some.