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Adapting for Special Needs Overseas - Call for Essays

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Sao Paulo



What typical restaurants, food delivery services, and/or takeout options are popular among expatriates?

The restaurant scene in Sao Paulo is well known around the world. You will be able to find any type of food if you look hard enough. If you are a sushi fan, you will be in heaven due to the quality and affordability. Most other restaurants, however, can be pricey. Note that dinner is late and most restaurants will not open until 7 p.m. Food delivery availability is random and often takes a while and shows up cold and a mess (due to the motorcycle transport on bumpy roads). - Nov 1, 2017
Good Chinese, Japanese, Brazilian, Italian. Really they have everything. A good pizza in the nice neighborhoods here is ridiculously expensive (like USD$25 for a medium). Leave your expectations of tasty salads at home. A Brazilian salad is iceberg lettuce, a few slices of tomato, a few slices of white onion, olive oil, vinegar (not vinaigrette), and carrot shreds if the chef is feeling frisky.

Brazilian BBQ is great. You will probably also find yourself eating grilled ham and cheese sandwiches more than you are ready for. You can always get a plate of rice, beans, an overcooked hunk of meat and the aforementioned Brazilian salad for like USD$7. Literally on every corner.

There are not great burritos, and no deli sandwiches, which is a bummer.

Brazilian food traditions are awesome though. Beware the carbs. It's not uncommon for a dish to come with rice, beans, fries, and mashed potatoes. Sometimes even spaghetti. - Apr 17, 2017


Pretty good options, though good Asian and Mexican is hard to come by. Most places deliver after 8 pm. Be careful of pizza places, as most inexplicably don't use tomato sauce on pizza. - Apr 11, 2017
ifood has everything you could imagine. Only problem is most places don't open until after 7pm. You can't get pizza until after 7pm. - Jan 15, 2017
Pizza restaurants are everywhere!

Lots of price-per-kilo and buffet-style cafes.

WARNING: Bread and Cake shops are highly addictive! - Jan 6, 2017


It's one of the great restaurant cities in the world. Don't limit yourself to fast food, although you have the usual options. I think the city's great strengths are traditional Brazilian food, Italian, Japanese, and Syrian/Lebanese, because of the ethnic heritage of the city. (They do other national cuisines, but the Mexican and Chinese are not as strong.) You can go for high-end cuisine, neighborhood diners, or por kilo lunch spots. Plenty of options. Pizza, obviously fantastic. Try Braz, Pizza na Mao, or Camelo. (One problem: It's nearly impossible to order pizza before 6:30pm. Paulistanos don't eat pizza for lunch, and they don't eat dinner until about 8pm). With the strong exchange rate, eating out is a bargain. Even fancy restaurants are generally within our means now that the real is at 3.5 to 1. - Aug 5, 2015
McDonald's is here, but expensive, as are subway and Domino's. Food ranges from cheap to REALLY expensive. You can find good food in any price range if you are willing to look. - Aug 2, 2013
You can find American restaurants like McDonald's, Pizza Hut, Domino's, Outback, Applebee's, Chili's, etc. It costs more than in the US. - Dec 13, 2012
McDonalds, Burger King, Subway more expensive than in the US. There are a number of fine dining options and you will pay heavily for those - unfortunately many lack the matching service quality. One of the most frustrating things about living here has been the absence of "good" and adequately priced restaurants. - Jan 25, 2012
McDonalds, Burger King, Pizza Hut, etc., more expensive than the US - Jan 17, 2012
Restaurants are very expensive. American restaurants in the city are Applebees and Chilis. Fast food is mainly McDonald's and "por kilo" (pay by weight) cafes. - Jan 3, 2012
Subway, McDonald"s, Burger King, Pizza Hut, plenty of local fast foods in any shopping mall. Jardins is where the best fine dining restaurants are, but you can eat well anywhere in the city. The food here is excellent. The churrascarias (all you can eat meat "rodizio"s) are also awesome. - Oct 26, 2008
You shouldn't eat fast food, it's not good for you. There are a ton of fantastic restaurants around here anyway for comprable prices. - Aug 14, 2008