Frevo, a musical Brazilian churrascaria experience

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Updated 11 June 2013

Frevo, a musical Brazilian churrascaria experience

Frevo is a Brazilian range of colorful dancing styles that are associated with Brazilian carnivals. This is also the name of a traditional Brazilian restaurant in Dubai. It is known for the mouthwatering Brazilian meats served on swords. Frevo has a set menu of all you can eat from their 13 different kinds of meat cuts. They also offer a menu for vegetarians.
The grill restaurant is located in the lobby level of Fairmont Resort at the Palm Jumeirah. You can hear the festive music before you even enter the restaurant. It comes from a live band singing original South American music and the people singing along while enjoying their food. The beige wallpaper is printed with Frevo dancer icons in colorful images and the restaurant has both indoor and outdoor seating. The indoor area is chic yet colorful with its beige and maroon velvet chairs and sofas that seat up to 100 diners at once. The open kitchen enables you to see your dishes as they are being prepared. In the center is the salad bar filled with appetizing original Brazilian and international salads. The outdoor area overlooks the Fairmont swimming pool, gardens and beach. It is designed in a classic setting with dark wood tables that seat 30 diners at once.
The restaurants will give you the opportunity to discover the true identity of authentic Brazilian food. As soon as you are seated, your South American waiter will help you learn more about the region. He will start by explaining that the San Paulo soup of the day — which I enjoyed — is an original recipe from Chef Fernando Lima’s mother. The soup has flank beef with mixed vegetables in tomato soup and served in a traditional soup pot. The soup came with their in-house baked breadbasket that was filled with warm, delicious and traditional cheese and garlic breads.
The waiter will then lead you to the salad bar where you can choose from their beautiful and colorful variety of fresh salads and cold cuts. It is an opportunity to try Brazilian salads such as the one that is sliced like shawerma with onions, beef slices and coriander in a zesty dressing. There is also the Brazilian taboula made with tomatoes, bulgur wheat and onion in a lemon dressing. Or you can try the grilled asparagus and mushroom salad — a great choice for vegetarians. There is also a selection of international salads such as the Caesar salad and seafood salad or you can go light with the cheese selections.
As soon as you are done with the salad, you are served the side dishes of black bean stew made with beef, beef bacon and chives and the famous bero bero fried rice made with eggs, potatoes and chives. Right when you are ready for your feast, you click on the Fervo sign and turn it green to tell the waiters you are ready for the big boys to come. After less than a minute you will find them flowing to your tables with swords filled with different kinds of soft, marinated and grilled cuts from sirloin, chicken wrapped in bacon, lamb chops, NYC steak, garlic-glazed strip loin, rib eye, Wagyu beef, chicken drumsticks and more. Make sure you turn the light to red when you feel overwhelmed with the different cuts and take your time enjoying every single one of them. I guarantee you will love it. If you lost your taste buds with all those kinds of meats ask your waiter to bring you a slice of the roasted pineapple with honey and cinnamon and this will snap the taste back in.
If you are a champion and you ended up eating all 13 cuts then you know you deserve a dessert. Ask for the flaming ice cream, served on a plate of what looks like boiling water. It is actually a really cold mixture between mango and chocolate ice cream — a great choice for warm summer days.

Expect to pay for set menu: AED 250 (SR 255)
Opening hours: Saturday to Wednesday 7 p.m. to 11.30 p.m.
Thursday 7 p.m. to midnight Fridays noon to 3.30 p.m. and 7 p.m. to midnight.

Email: [email protected]

Take a healthy approach to the issue of nutritional supplements

Updated 21 April 2018

Take a healthy approach to the issue of nutritional supplements

JEDDAH: There is a growing need for dietary supplements in Saudi Arabia, given the increasing popularity of junk food and the effective role supplements can play in treating diseases caused by mineral and vitamin deficiencies.

A recent study found that 22 percent of Saudi people take nutritional supplements. It is no surprise, then, that many Saudi businesses have forged partnerships with international dietary-supplement companies.

Dr. Rowaidah Idriss, a Saudi dietitian with a Ph.D. in nutrition, said dietary supplements can be defined as substances that provide the human body with a nutrient missing from a person’s regular diet. However, she stressed that they are not intended to replace healthy eating.

She also warned against taking them without first talking to a doctor or dietitian, as some products can have side effects, especially if taken before surgery or with other medicines. 

“They can also cause problems if someone has a history of certain health issues,” she added.

A blood test can determine which nutrients we are not getting enough of in our diet, and therefore which supplements might be beneficial. Nutritional supplements are also used to help treat certain health conditions. 

“Vitamin C, for example, is often used to reduce cold symptoms,” said Idriss. “Fish oil is taken to lower elevated blood triglycerides.”

She suggested four daily essentials that can bridge nutritional gaps in our diet: a multivitamin, vitamin D, calcium and omega-3 fatty acids. 

“I routinely recommend a daily multivitamin and mineral supplement to my clients after consulting with their doctors,” she said. 

“For menstruating women, who require 18 milligrams of iron each day, a daily supplement helps boost iron intake.”

She said people over the age of 50 are advised to take a multivitamin to ensure they are getting enough B12, which plays a key role in the functioning of the nervous system and the development of red blood cells. 

“Older adults are more vulnerable to B12 deficiency because they are more likely to have decreased production of stomach acid, which is needed to release B12 from the proteins in food.” said Idriss. 

“It is also a good idea to take a daily multivitamin if one is following a low-calorie diet.”

She also pointed out that a high intake of DHA and EPA, the two omega-3 fatty acids found in fish oil, are linked with a lower risk of heart disease and Type 2 diabetes. A deficiency of DHA might also increase the risk of Alzheimer’s. 

“A daily intake of 1,000 milligrams of both DHA and EPA is equivalent to eating 12 ounces of salmon a week,” said Idriss.

The dietitian believes that the Saudis who take food supplements often do so more to benefit their appearance than their health. 

“Saudi women consume more dietary supplements than other people in Saudi Arabia,” she said. 

“They do so either to lose weight or to care for their hair and nails. Bodybuilders also take large amounts of supplements.”

However, both groups, according to Idriss, tend to take supplements on the recommendation of friends and trainers, not doctors. 

She warned that commercials and social-media rumors can persuade people to buy supplements online that may not be approved as safe by the Saudi Food and Drug Authority, and advised people to get as much of their daily nutrient needs as possible from healthy eating.

Dr. Rowaidah Idriss

“Along with vitamins and minerals, a healthy diet provides fiber and hundreds of protective phytochemicals, something a supplement cannot do,” she said, adding that the body absorbs natural food more effectively than supplements.

In addition, combining supplements with medications can have dangerous, even life-threatening, effects. 

“Drugs for heart disease and depression, treatments for organ transplants, and birth-control pills are less effective when taken with herbal supplements,” she said.

“Taking an anticoagulant, aspirin, and a vitamin E supplement together may increase the potential for internal bleeding or even stroke.”


Natural sources

With the spread of fast-food restaurants and their alluring ads, the long-term health of the Saudi people is in danger, as children and young people snub natural sources of nutrients, such as fruit and vegetables. 

“This can lead to many deficiency diseases. Moreover, vegetarians can develop similar illnesses due to the absence of meat in their diet,” she said.
Dr. Ashraf Ameer, a family-medicine consultant, said the importance of nutritional supplements lies in treating mineral and vitamin deficiency, especially for pregnant women, growing children, diabetics, people with chronic diseases, and the elderly. 

“However, these products should come from reliable companies and meet Saudi food and drug requirements,”he added.

Mohammed Yaseen, who has a food supplements business, said his company works with a leading British health-care company to provide the Saudi market with high quality products.

“With this we hope we can contribute to the national transformation program by raising private-sector spending in health care from 25 percent to 35 percent, which in turn would lead to the sector’s financial sustainability and boost economic and social development in the Kingdom,” Yaseen said.


Vitamin Terms

DHA stands for docosahexaenoic acid. EPA stands for eicosapentaenoic acid.  Phytochemical is a biologically active compound found in plants.