I had further acquaintances to renew when I crossed the threshold as one of the waitresses from my lunchtime trip to Girvans was working the dinner service. It turns out that the two places are in the same ownerships, which was a happy coincidence.With a pizzeria upstairs, the menu in the stylish ground level dining room focuses mainly on Italian classics, with something of an emphasis on seafood. I was happy to see local mussels as a special so ordered a starter portion of them, then followed with the hot smoked salmon risotto.
The mussels soon arrrived looking plentiful. Served in a nicely herby tomato and fennel broth these represented a very good ingredient prepared to a very good standard. I was impressed.The main course risotto was similarly good. I tend to prefer my risotto served a little looser than it’s often served, but this had a good ooze to it. The salmon was excellent and there was a good green freshness from the peas and dill.
So overall, I enjoyed my visit to Riva. Much like it’s sister restaurant, this is doing very good work. It serves classic Italian staples to a very pleasing standard. I’d be happy to recommend that you visit next time you’re in these Highland parts.
Blythe scores Riva
4/5 for food
3.5/5 for presentation
4/5 for setting
4/5 for service
giving an overall 15.5/20
I ate: Moray Firth mussels in tomato and fennel broth; smoked salmon risotto
I drank: chardonnay, water, espresso
I wore: matching tie and handkerchief
Total bill: £23.30