HOME > Chowhound > Mid-Atlantic >

Discussion

aquaviva -- as good as the reviews

  • 4

Umm thanks hounds loved aquaviva from start to finish...

first -- apparently the trick in westfield is to get there early so you can park -- we did. had 6:15 reservations and were able to park in municipal lot adjacent to Aquaviva. Music a tad loud when we entered but place was empty; by the time we left SRO! This place weighs in heavy on the ambience, high ceilings, red candles on the mantle, white on the table. Really pretty, romantic, suitable for couples and families (not little kids).

Lovely hostess, immediate seating, great table in the 1st of 4 dining rooms. Starters included complimentary brushetta/olives/cheese/soppressa // DELISH // would have liked to have more! i think sivyaleah recommended the seafood crepes, my date ordered these and really enjoyed them, accompanied by the lobster bisque. I had the tricolore salad (too much endive, not enough vinegar but fresh) and veal madeira -- veal was tender and tasty.
Ample selection of wine by the glass although i ordered pino and think it was chardonnay.
Restrooms spotless, as was restaurant. Staff EXCELLENT.

Would have liked maybe one more veal and fish selection, and their dessert coffee too strong for me but thats a personal preference, whipped cream was sweet and fresh! Nearby table had a delicious looking platter of fresh berries, I think i would go w/ that next time.

No complaints -- I loved this place and would revisit // Thanks for the recommendations!

  1. Click to Upload a photo (10 MB limit)
Delete
  1. Glad you liked it. It's one of our favorites for special nights. We were there for New Year's Eve in fact, because we both were not feeling well leading into the night and had not made reservations elsewhere, assuming we might not be well enough to go out. Because the restaurant is so large, they were easily able to accommodate us at the last minute.

    I agree it is NOT for kids. You'll find everyone mentions this. We rarely see them in there and when we do, they are remarkably well behaved types.

    I've had the lobster bisque too - nice chunks of lobster in it. I agree about the tricolore salad, I'm not big on endive either. Did they serve this one in the parmesean cup? Love that touch.

    Next time try their creme brulee if you enjoy that, it's one of the best ones we've ever had :-)

    1 Reply
    1. re: sivyaleah

      i did see another salad in that cup and it looked appetizing!

    2. Funny you mention kids...my son was there twice, once at 2 months old and once around 18 months, and both times the staff was so wonderful and attentive to us and him. We did go early, so it wasn't too crowded, but in many ways it was more child-friendly than other places in Westfield. I now have two kids, though, and I don't think I'd take them both until they're a little older.

      1 Reply
      1. re: maryelizabeth

        We've seen have seen infants there, but not a lot of toddlers or school age kids. I think the "romantic" atmosphere is off-putting to them. The last time we were there, a family had 2 kids there playing video games throughout the meal. We found that to be annoying, however, at least they had enough sense to have the sound turned down low and it kept the kids quiet :-)