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169 Church Road
An institution much loved by its elegant local regulars and occasional celebrities, Riva is renowned for simple, well-prepared Italian cooking. It’s not wildly better than others, nor wildly more expensive (though the menu and notable wine list take no prisoners), and its unassuming, slightly scruffy terracotta surroundings are no more chic. What distinguishes the place is its charismatic owner, Andrea Riva, who has a knack of remembering names, faces and food preferences. He’s prepared to go off-menu for favoured diners, recommending whatever he knows will suit them – so dinner can be exceptionally personal. The rest of us must choose from a list where risottos and the roast suckling pig attract praise, and the tiramisu provides a satisfactory ending. The pallyness can wind up some newcomers, who feel excluded from the inner circle and who know there are only two ways in – either become a regular or become famous.
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Best restaurants in Barnes
StreetSmart - London restaurants
169 Church Road
Barnes Bridge Station 933m
Barnes Station 1km
Hogarth Roundabout 1km
Hammersmith Bridge 1km
Mon-Fri, Sun 12.15-2.15pm Mon-Sun 7-10pm (Sun -9pm)
Food & Drink:
Rate & Review
Food + drink: 4
I couldnt agree more with overall review of Riva especially the comment about service. I have eaten at Riva a number of times now and sadly the head waiter has always given me the opportunity to not to want to go back. i love the food and even the slightly scruffy appearance but the head waiter…he has the ability to look down his nose at you with some skill. Having eaten there last night and held my tongue due to the amount of shell in crab raviolu i couldnt help but politely point out the high number of bones found in the Sea Bream (de boning one is not easy i am told) but his response was unbelievable he turned very agressive and almost informed me i was an idiot (perhaps I am). Sadly his continual ability to be fantastically rude means i might not be able to go back, as i love the food…maybe one last chance
The traditional North Italian food and subtle ambience inspire loyalty; Riva is why I love zabaione. Like leaving a holiday, I always find myself planning my next visit on my way home.
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