With Zozo, it was love at first sight. Tucked into the base of one of Rio’s most iconic landmarks, the Sugar loaf mountain, Zozo is set to become a landmark destination in its own right. The mezzanine dinnerclub is built around the trunk of an immense hundred year old Mangueira tree. Watching one of the excellent live acts perform a variety of traditional Brazilian music while seated under a canopy of powerful branches and the starry night sky is akin to spending a few hours in an enchanted forest, and a very charming one at that. Come midnight, the tables magically disappear and the curtains are drawn back to reveal a dance floor and well stocked bar staffed by white-coated waiters shaking some of the best cocktails in town, while well-heeled cariocas dance the night away. Add a head chef who trained with Daniel Boulud, a few international djs and a sommelier who certainly knows how to pour a proper glass of wine, and one begins to realise why Zozo is set to be the place to go for a long time to come.
The second floor, available for hire for private events, conjures up the glamour of 1950’s and the emerging Bossa Nova scene with floor to ceiling black and white prints of Ipanema beach. Step out to the hidden smoking area at the back and find yourself gazing up the mountain and across the branches of the tree downstairs- a sight to entice even the staunchest of non-smokers. Zozo is set to open the third floor in the coming year as a cigar and cocktail bar for those in the know, so watch this space.
Head to Zozo for a late Sunday lunch of the typical Brazilian dish ‘feijoada’ followed by some of the city’s best live samba. Make sure you take a break to head up the Sugar loaf Mountain to watch the sunset over the city… it is next door after all. From 4 PM