There are numerous excellent restaurants around Rua 13 de Maio, the main drag of Bixiga, São Paulo's Little Italy, but the classic Cantina Roperto, founded in 1941, is one of my favorites. Elderly waiters dressed in black-and-white uniforms welcome guests to the old-fashioned dining room that's decorated with wood paneling, Chianti wine bottles, and white table linen. The kitchen serves straight-up Italian fare—there's no pizza and no frills. Start off with grilled eggplant or olives, or share an antipasto platter or a salad. Then order one of the fresh pasta dishes. Try the cannelloni with ricotta, fettuccini, rondelle, or ravioli with fresh tomato-and-basil sauce, pesto sauce, or oil and garlic. Heartier meat dishes include chicken or steak parmigiana with tomato sauce, ham, and cheese, and the crunchy bife milanesa, a crispy, breaded and deep-fried steak. A carafe of Italian house wine is very affordable, at R$26 for 500 ml. Portions are generous here, so a half-order of salad will serve two as an appetizer or can be a side dish to your entree, and most pasta and meat dishes feed two people. Conclude your meal with a slice of tangy lemon meringue pie, served frozen, or a strong Italian espresso.
Sao Paulo› Restaurant
Rua Treze de Maio 634
Our Rating Neighborhood Bela Vista Hours Daily 11:30am-midnight Transportation Taxi recommended Phone 11/3288-2573 Prices Entrees R$55-R$80 Cuisine Type Italian Web site Roperto