Brazilian steakhouse Rodizio Grill closes on Allentown's Lehigh Street

Ryan Kneller

A restaurant offering an authentic Brazilian dining experience — complete with more than a dozen rotisserie-grilled meats served tableside by “gauchos” — has closed in Allentown.

Rodizio Grill, a steakhouse chain with nearly two dozen locations nationwide, closed its five-year-old restaurant at 2802 Lehigh St. — its only Lehigh Valley location — a couple weeks ago, according to a worker, who was removing furniture from the building this week.

“We had high hopes and worked very hard with a local group to replace the prior franchise owner, but sadly that did not come to fruition in a timely manner,” said Ashlee Hille, Rodizio’s director of marketing. “We are very grateful for our loyal guests and the entire Lehigh Valley community who supported us for years.”

The chain’s closest location to the Lehigh Valley is in Camden County, N.J.

Fortunately, the 10-year-old Rios Brazilian Steakhouse in Nazareth continues to serve a taste of Rio closer to home.

The restaurant at 127 S. Broad St. promises to offer an authentic taste of a southern Brazil “churrascaria,” or steakhouse.

Diners enjoy continuous skewers of meat and an all-you-can-eat salad bar.

Premium cuts of meat range from homemade spicy sausage, top sirloin, beef ribs and picanha (rump steak) to turkey wrapped in bacon, pork shoulder, chicken leg and lamb.

You get free fried banana, but you also can order sides such as fries, mashed potatoes, fried yucca and Brazilian cheese curd.

The cost is $32.95; $16.95 for children, ages 7-12.

Rios also offers a full bar and homemade desserts such as Brazilian flan, crème brulee and passion fruit mousse.

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