Meat. The most tender meat ever eaten. Here they distinguish between meat and chicken. Meat is red meat. This part of Brasil is known as Gaúcho country. It refers back to the only food that the first settlers were eating, meat for breakfast, lunch and diner. I always thought of the south of Argentina as the pampa land. But this landscape stretches well into Rio Grande do Sul. There is debate whether or not the Rio da Prata north of Buenos Aires is a division line, but those who do not take this consider all of Argentina, Uruguay and 63% of the state Rio Grande do Sul as “paisagem natural dos pampas”, some 700.000 km2. The Brasilian part is 178.243 km2 big and from a country perspective only 2 % of the Brasilian territory. However since it stretches over the most of this south state it is a significant landscape feature and cultural reference point here. In a way the southerners here have more in common with the “hermanos pampeanos do Uruguai e da Argentina” than with the north of Brasil.

So, I had my ‘initiation’ as a gaúcha helping out with the churrasco, the Brasilian bbq. Of course, it is a typical men’s thing the preparation of the churrasco. Who is cutting the meat on sundays? There is not much else to it than meat, some toasted garlic bread and beer. But what a meat! Especially the “picanha” cut of meat, the most tender meat you can imagen. So all you need is wood fire or wood coals, first quality meat, salt and a typical bbq place. These places you can find everywhere, for example on the roof of every tall apartment building. Stick your nose out of the window on a sunday at noon and you can smell the churrasco’s in the whole city. It is typical for sunday family life or ‘occasions’ such as the end of my time here. Thanks all for the wonderful time!