HOUReview

photo credit: Chelsea Thomas

dark plastic covered table covered in plates of cheesy italian food, pasta, and chicken picatta
8.1

Riva's Italian Restaurant

Italian

Montrose

$$$$Perfect For:Casual Weeknight DinnerEating At The BarWalk-Ins
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Even though Riva’s Italian has been around for forever, it still feels like one of Montrose’s best kept secrets. Stacked floor to ceiling with an almost nauseating level of kitsch and near year-round holiday lights, Riva’s kind of feels like someone smashed together a sassy dive bar and a small town Italian-American restaurant. We’re completely obsessed with it.

The staff wears regular clothes and no aprons, so you might not even know who works here at first, but the service feels genuine, professional, and lightning fast once you do. Portions of penne and piccata are massive, and every entree comes with a soup of the day to start, and a salad served with near mythically-delicious Italian-ish dressing on the side. Almost everything gets smothered (and we mean drenched) in white sauce or red sauce. And while nothing here seems like it will blow your mind, it also kind of will, because the food always tastes way better than you expect. Trust the process here, and respect the “no kids allowed” policy, and you will be greatly rewarded, mostly with a plate of cheesy carbs. Go here for a casual meal, a quick date night,  or anytime you want to feel a little warm cheer in your cold, grizzled heart.

red window-paned door with a sign that reads "children under age 12 are not allowed"

photo credit: Chelsea Thomas

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