Riva in Santa Monica
I just wanted to share that my husband and I enjoyed an exceptional meal at Riva this past weekend. It's a lovely space and i was happy that we scored a corner booth for two. We started by sharing the hamachi crudo which was just perfect! It wasn't a huge size portion but the quality of fish was fantastic and well worth the price ($12 maybe?). Simultaneously we got the burrata & roasted pepper salad with arugula. This was simple but with quality ingredients & nicely executed. Next we enjoyed a gorgonzola & greens pizza which was really nicely done. The crust was thin but not wafer thin & very flavorful. Finally we shared the shellfish fra diavolo which included a half maine lobster, 2 shrimp, squid, clams, mussels and orzo in a nice spicy tomato sauce. It was very tasty and i was glad that the chef was not afraid to put some heat in this dish. With dinner I ordered a glass of pinot noir and I appreciated that the wine list was very approachable with several glasses of wine available under $10. For dessert we order both the chocolate bread pudding & and pear and almond tart. The chocolate pudding was wonderful whereas the tart was the only item I would not order again because the flavors were just flat and pears & almond is one of my personal favorites. All and all we really enjoyed Riva and plan to return. Our bill was $126 before tip which also included a bottle of water.
big fan here too. thought the food was a bit cleaner and simpler at fraiche but liked the refined riskiness at riva. liked the seafood dishes quite a bit and felt the pizza's were better than at mozza. the pignoli pizza with pancetta, tomato and i believe reggiano was exceptional.