Strawberry Caipirinha at Agora, Our Drink of the Week!

Agora is one of the best, if not the best place to eat steak in Irvine. It's expensive but what restaurant offering all-you-can-eat Brazilian churrasco isn't?

There is, however, a way to eat at Agora without spending your entire day's paycheck: the Happy Hour. Sit at the bar and ask for their $9 single-trip hot foods and salad buffet, where you can load up your plate as full as you can, one time, from the most immaculately curated buffet line in OC. You'll find clams in butter, mussels in a chunky tomato braise, and potatoes roasted in seasoned wedges or whipped to a buttery smoothness. There's good crumbly aged cheese, smoked fish, shrimp cocktail, and fluffy rice to be doused in a white-meat chicken stew. If you actually want salad, it's there too.


Always included free, even during Happy Hour, are the cinnamon-covered baked bananas and baskets of their wonderful chewy-cheesy bread balls. If that mountain of food you managed to fit onto your plate isn't enough, you could also ask for some churrasco, which is available during Happy Hour in controlled portions for about $4. You're better off investing that money in the caipirinha, though–the Brazilian national drink.

And if you're going to have a caipirinha, you might as well make it a strawberry one, which are as delicious and dangerous as the regular stuff, but softened with fruit. The drink crunches with sugar, sharp with lime juice, and burns with cacha├ža, a distilled spirit made from sugarcane juice. In the glass they'll muddle some basil, which gives it the grassy note it needs. The whole thing is refreshing, tasting like a sort of pink strawberry lime-ade capable of knocking you down hard if you hadn't already fortified your stomach with all of that food.

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