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Marc Lim
Wednesday, Jun 25, 2014

Sports

I ate 1kg of food at 'kilo' eatery

The Straits Times | Marc Lim | Wednesday, Jun 25, 2014

The spread at a kilo restaurant in Sao Paulo. These are essentially buffets which charge customers by the weight of the food they choose.

The Brazil World Cup has been serving up a feast of goals, with an average of almost three a game, from mind-blowing diving headers to spectacular volleys. It is little wonder that the generous supply of goals has gone down well with Brazilians, who enjoy a good spread.

Walk into most Brazilian shopping malls and even the airports, and chances are, you will find "kilo" restaurants, as the locals like to call them.

These are essentially buffets which charge customers by the weight of the food they choose.

Ranging from 4 Brazilian real (S$2.24) to about 7 real per 100 grams, depending on the spread of food, these restaurants are a real treat. Salads, rice and beans are the norm but some restaurants offer pasta, barbecued meats and even sushi, which is very popular with Brazilians.

Smaller eateries offer about 20 varieties of food but bigger ones can offer as many as 40.

For journalists, the realisation of such food establishments was pure bliss.

Between travelling to different cities and World Cup venues and filing stories for both print and online, quick meals can be very helpful.

So any place where I can slap food on my plate, pay and be done in 10 minutes is a blessing.

That sounds good in theory but I did not factor the greedy Singaporean in me.

After helping myself to generous servings of a little bit of everything (the kiasu Singaporean in me figured that that is the best way to get value for money, especially the more expensive meats, since everything is priced the same), the meal came up to about 50 real, or about 1kg of food. I swear it was mainly because the serving plate provided was very heavy.

Although shocked by how much I had put on my plate, it was not like I could put the food back.

I had no choice but to pay and make sure I finished everything and not waste the food.

But aside from ordering too much, the food was great and so I have found myself going back a second and a third time in my 11 days here so far. Of course, I made sure I was less greedy subsequently.

I reckon it is my best find in Brazil so far and I will be visiting more "kilo" restaurants in the five weeks I am in Brazil.

Paying by weight is a great concept and perhaps we should have that concept in Singapore - I know we have restaurants which penalise buffet patrons by making them weigh and pay for food they waste.

I am just thankful that airlines do not adopt this concept because I reckon I will be heavier for the return flight home after five weeks.


This article was first published on JUNE 23, 2014.
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