By Mara Papatheodorou, your Tastes & Traditions Expert
Set between mountains and beaches, the stunning, seductive sights of Rio de Janeiro beckon. Enjoy the vistas of Pao de Acucar (Sugar Loaf) or ride the Corcovado Railroad to see the renowned Christo Redentor (Christ the Redeemer). Stroll Ipanema, Leblon or Copacabana beaches and get a cultural overview at the National History Museum or Teatro Municipal. Visit Maracana, the soccer stadium where legendary Pele scored his 1000th goal.
SAIL: Rio de Janeiro. Bring Brazilian flavors and flair home with local lembrancas (mementos). Coffee beans & a bottle of Cachaca are delectable Portuguese purchases. Shop for Bossa nova and Samba music, wooden artifacts, tabletop items and gems.
SIP: Caipirinha. Brazilian farmers created this refreshing potent potion by combining their abundant crops of sugar cane and limes. Cachaca (fermented sugar cane liqueur) is mixed with muddled fresh limes and sugar for a captivating cocktail. Saude!(Cheers)
SAVOR: Feijoada (Beans, beef & pork entree). Feijao is Portuguese for beans hence the name of this hearty national dish of Brazil. It is a stew made with multi-colored beans and sliced spicy sausage served over rice.
Mara Papatheodorou is a Master Foodie, a Tastes & Traditions Expert and a nationally established entertaining specialist. She has interpreted the cuisine and experienced the culture of over 65 countries worldwide. As an 11 year Contributing Editor at BON APPETIT Magazine, Mara scouted and produced the Entertaining with Style section that highlighted how real people entertain around the country and the world and was editor of their international editions. She works as a consultant with food companies developing recipes, menus and promotional campaigns.
Mara is the Tastes & Traditions Expert for Regent Seven Seas Cruises where she lectures regularly about the history of cuisine and culture and what to sip and savor in various ports. Watch her dining and wine tour videos on our website under multimedia. She next sails on the Seven Seas Navigator from New York to Canada October 12-22, 2014. You can read more about her at www.marapapa.com