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Rioz in Myrtle Beach offers something to please everyone

Anyone planning a trip to Myrtle Beach, South Carolina should not miss dining at Rioz Brazilian Steakhouse. Located directly on 17 Bypass in Myrtle Beach, this establishment offers fare that is head and shoulders above the standard choices found at various eateries up and down the beach. If you are looking for an unforgettable culinary experience, you owe it to yourself to visit Rioz.

The quality of the food is unparalleled by any other establishment in Myrtle Beach, and delightfully entertaining was the only way to describe Greg, our server. When I jokingly said–because he was exceptionally fast– “hey, it took you eight whole seconds to refill our drinks,” he instantly replied “and that's just not acceptable, I better go see if I can adjust my attitude.” I laughed until the tears rolled.

If you begin with the salad bar–and you will if you allow yourself make eye contact with it–you will be tempted to go back for seconds. Unlike the standard or downright boring salad bar fare found in most beach restaurants, Rioz offers unique and interesting choices with absolutely no filler foods (items that look pretty, but that no human would deliberately ingest.) The no-fluff spread included fresh sushi, black beans and rice, fresh mozzarella, sun-dried tomatoes, pea salad, hot salmon, beautiful greens, artichoke bottoms, baby Swiss cheese, heart of palm, grilled pineapple, asparagus, jumbo black and green olives, Parmegiano-Regiano cheese, Prosciutto di Parma, roasted yellow or red bell peppers, Shitake mushrooms, salami, and the freshest shrimp I have ever tasted.

The next potential hazard you will try unsuccessfully to avoid in order to leave room for savory meats are the side dishes. Greg approached our table with fresh homemade mashed potatoes, polenta, fried bananas and cheese bread. He placed these tasty dishes on the table and I said “now look what you've done!” His natural flair for comedy ensured an entertaining response which was “I know, and I've been told about this before. Just don't tell anyone I gave you this stuff.”

Circular “tokens” featuring red on one side and green on the other are used to signal your servers that you either want them to keep the beef, lamb, chicken, and pork coming–green side up–or that you need a moment to work up your appetite for the nest delicious morsel–red side up.

Sirloin steak, lamb chops, tender pork ribs and juicy, slow roasted chicken legs are just a few of the many choices that will dazzle your taste buds. Just when you think you are safe, your waiter will tempt you with delicious tenderloin cuts wrapped in bacon or succulent filet mignon. I particularly enjoyed the Parmesan-encrusted pork loin and the garlic sirloin steak, but picking a favorite was essentially impossible. Not a big Sausage fan, I had to admit that the robust pork sausage seasoned to perfection was exceptional, and the thick, slow-cooked beef ribs were unlike anything I ever tasted in a Myrtle Beach restaurant.

Just when I thought it couldn't get any worse, a dessert tray arrived showcasing Brazilian pudding, Cream Brulee topped with fruit, and Turtle Cheesecake garnished with nuts and caramel. Chocolate mousse cake and key lime pie are also featured on the dessert menu. I never had much of a sweet tooth, but when Greg finished describing a Rioz signature dessert called “Strawberry Cream,” a diabolical dormant sweet tooth sprang to life. He painted an outstanding picture of delicious vanilla bean ice cream mixed with fresh strawberries and topped with Creme de Cassis. I would recommend foregoing that last bite of steak to make room for this sumptuous dessert. Beware, you may also be offered your choice of Papaya Cream, which is the same as the aforementioned dessert, but made with fresh papaya in lieu of strawberries. When I told Greg I was simply too full for dessert, he said in an ultra-serious tone “you may think that now, but you will find that decision regrettable at some point down the road, and life's too short for regrets.” It was free entertainment at its finest.

Ultimately, if you enjoy a comfortable but classy dining environment, unmatched food quality, and waiters such as Greg, who really must be experienced rather than explained, then you owe it yourself to visit Rioz and enjoy a delicious, genuine Brazilian Churrascaria experience.