4 articles Articles posted in Cultural tit bits

8 steps to make a great caipirinha

You can usually tell a gringo at parties in Brazil because they make some key errors when making a caipirinha.  It’s really hard to find a good recipe online so here are the tips I learned from the Brazilian. 1) Wash limes (1-1.5 limes per caipirinha). 2) Cut the lime down the middle and remove the white pith. The white pith gives the caipirinha a sour taste. 3) Cut rest of lime into cubes and …

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3 reasons why Brazilian couples sit on the same side of the table

This is indeed a common cultural practice in Brazil and in particular Rio de Janeiro. Depending on whom you speak to you will get different answers. Here are the two most frequently used reasons: 1) Brazilians show affection very physically. PDA is not a familiar concept at any age in Brazil and its commons to see couples necking during dinner. 2) Brazilians are more tactile than Americans and Northern Europeans. Even introductions involve hugs and …

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3 reasons why restaurants use wax paper napkins

One thing you will likely notice as a tourist at a Brazilian restaurant is the use of wax paper napkins.  This is also common in Argentina and they don’t work well there either.  At least for Brazil, here are the reasons behind this: 1) It’s hot and humid so regular napkins absorb moisture over time and get soggy 2) Regular napkins are more expensive and generally it’s the more expensive places that use them 3) …

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Why Brazilians more patient in line-ups than I am

Go into any bank in Brazil and you will see huge line-ups of people patiently waiting to be served.  It never ceases to amaze me how patient the people in the bank are even when the line up can take over 2 hours!  I am not sure about the historical reasons why, but here are some things I have noticed about the Brazilian culture which probably contribute to this phenomena. 1) Relatively lower services levels …

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