This was my second visit to Riviera, and the entire experience was oooh-ahhh-worthy.
A former bank in downtown Ottawa, turned into a restaurant, this place takes reservations weeks in advance. We were able to walk in on a Tuesday night (after a long weekend, ie. not many folks are going out to eat) around 8:30pm and get a table.
Our server was Alex, and he had an excellent touch and overview of the table the entire night. A perfect example of a professional server, knowing exactly how to read the table and when to interrupt, and when to not (or offer silent service). He informed us in a roundabout way that he was a Som as we were perusing the wine menu and offered some amazing suggestions.
From there, we dove into the menu and felt incredible indecisive--everything looked sensational! It was hard to decide so we asked Alex and he made some fantastic suggestions, two of which we took him up on: the grilled octopus (a fan fave--and we know why now!) and the dill crisp Halibut. We also ordered the mushroom toast.
Our orders came out perfectly timed, one at a time, and Alex was there to break everything down as needed without ever feeling intrusive. We took our time with each dish, and got the true Riviera experience. Each dish was exceptional and we couldn't get over the amount of flavour and richness of everything. It was an outstanding meal!!
One other thing to note, from my previous visit, was the cocktail list--extensive and amazing. I had a mezcal (tequila) cocktail and it was amazing!! I would highly recommend veering out of your comfort zone and trying one of their incredible concoctions.
Would absolutely recommend this spot, and look forward to going back!!
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