Hello FoodDiggers,

The official FoodDigger blog has been moved to http://www.FoodDigger.com/blog

Head over now to see the latest!

Thursday, October 30, 2008

Riva - Jason Travi's New Restaurant in Santa Monica, CA

312 Wilshire Blvd
Santa Monica, CA

On October 28, Riva opened it's doors for the first time. Hours are 11:30 am to midnight, 7 days a week. However, the first two weeks will have a special schedule of 5:00 pm to 10:00 pm from Mon-Thur, and open til midnight on Fri-Sat.

Jason Travi's newest Italian restaurant features a decor that's a bit more upscale than that of his first child, Fraiche. On one side, there's a bar that seems a bit less approachable than the lively and welcoming bar at Fraiche; on the other, a pizza bar.

We stopped by a few days ago simply because of our love of Fraiche. We first got wind of Riva's impending opening 6 months ago during a conversation with Chef Travi. He was apparently having difficulty getting served at his bar one night, so he sat and talked to us for 45 minutes.

Upon seating, we decided on the following:

Geoduck, orange, watercress, mint, basil seeds

The raw geoduck slices were really tender and sweet, and the orange royales and basil seeds really worked well.

House made head cheese

Simply amazing with the fattiness cut by the radish slices.

Roasted quail, farrow, butternut squash, pistachio pesto

Tender roasted quail on farro...beautifully tender and flavorful.

Pignoli pizza made with pine nut, tomato, smoked pancetta and reggiano

Interesting pizza. Couldn't taste the pine nuts, but the pancetta was great.

Tradicionale pizza made with proscuitto, arugula, and pecorino romano

Best pizza of the night. The proscuitto and arugala were fantastic. Also noteworthy, the three pizzas we did have had inconsistency in the dough. The crust for this pizza was close to perfection, but the others were chewy.

Bianca pizza with spinach, ricotta and pecorino romano

House made ricotta with spinach. Slightly browned ricotta was delicious, but the spinach left something to be desired. The crust on this pizza was lacking...too chewy.

Considering there were only three of us, and none of us were hungry, I think we did a good job.

Riva did a good job too, I would say. New restaurant jitters and the need for some time to get things down were evident, but not glaring deficiencies. Service was decent and food just a tad under great. Like a fine wine from Chef Travi's list...a little time and it'll be great.


FoodDigger said...

Thank you for your comment! Please enjoy the site and the blog.


Unknown said...

Hi I loved this place too and so did my husband and my 2 boys.

I love the food there is no other place like this.

I also like your blog and you have done a really good job with this food review.

You should get in touch with the bizymoms Santa-monica community and send in your posts. The moms would love it.

Anonymous said...

타워 내에 한식, 중식, 일식, 뷔페 등 다양한 식당과 중저가 한국 디자이너 브랜드의 의류상품, 편의점 등 호텔에서는 보기 어려운 요소를 마련해놓은 것도 카지노 고객을 유치하기 위한 전략이다. 또 트래블버블 등 해외여행 재개 움직임이 카지노쿠폰 빨라지면서 카지노 개장을 통해 이에 대비할 수 있는 인프라스트럭처 구성을 마쳤다. 제주드림타워가 이달 초부터 외국인 전용 카지노 '드림타워 카지노'를 개장하면서 복합 리조트의 면모를 갖추는 데 성공했다.