Showcasing artisanal products and the best local ingredients is the commendable aim of the Caminhos do Brasil series of gourmet dinners. And with a biodiversity as, well, diverse as that of Brazil, with its thousands of miles of coast and river, and vast swathes of forest, jungle and drylands, there shouldn't be any lack of inspiration when it comes to creating the menus.
The first venue to act as host is, aptly, Casa de Maria Madalena, a casual, low-lit bar-restaurant establishing something of a reputation for its food, with the chef Fábio Vieira taking a locavore approach to his tapas-style menu, using as many Brazilian ingredients as he can.
Some of Vieira's regular dishes will be on the Caminhos do Brasil menu, such as the shimeji mushroom, cheese-and-rocket-stuffed tapioca. New creations include the ravioli filled with a mozzarella-like cheese – queijo cabacinha – and a homage to the north of Brazil in the risotto with wild manioc root tucupi, flowering herb jambu and grilled freshwater fish tambaqui.
Each course will be served to the sound of live jazz, and even the wines are strictly local, all hailing from small vineyards in the south of Brazil.