Between the long-standing nighthawk's favourite Pizzaria Guanabara and Jobi on Leblon’s Ataulfo Paiva, a fresh new eatery with a twist has set up shop. The funky yellow and orange sign beaming out the name Papajaya is a homage to Gray’s Papaya hot dog joint in New York, and after the failure of Andy's here last year someone seems determined to try and finally make the 'dog a success in this part of town.
Said dog (one for R$5, two for R$7) is made from 100 percent beef (no pork here sadly) and served up in a doughy, white brioche-like bun. Adding some variety is the Jaya Cheese Steak, an elaboration of the deli sandwich, offered with either a lean cut of topside beef, or organic chicken with an abundance of possible extras; Mozzarella, provolone and cheddar cheeses, asparagus, palmito, pepper, mushrooms, pineapple and banana for the healthy hit and then come the sauces: Curry, mustard, yoghurt and cucumber.
Papajaya also fuses a few flavours from around the world, including the Jaya India sandwich, with meat, curry sauce, onion, palm heart, pineapple and mozzarella, (where authenticity, it seems, has been substituted for a taste sensation). A Greek mix is also available, served with yoghurt and cucumber sauce, asparagus, onion, mushrooms and provolone, and the British comes with cheddar cheese and Dijon mustard.
The concept carries over to the drinks, with stylish cups of soda (R$4) with flavours like fizzy, sweet coffee, lemon, passion fruit and matte tea with lime, while the DJ owner keeps the soundtrack up to scratch with a mix of hip hop, R&B and nostalgic funk from the '80s and '90s. Open until 5am on Fridays and Saturdays, it remains to be seen how big a dent they will be able to make on the Pizzaria Guanabara crowd, but the late-night munchies definitely have a new saviour.