For many people Riga is just another touristic city in the Baltic States. For me Riga and Latvia in general is a place where I grew up. And every street, every corner is filled with memories. So when I come here, I don’t visit popular attractions (even I probably should). I come to Riga to meet with my friends and spend some time with my mom.
And this post will be all about restaurant experience, both – good and bad.
We came to Riga on 28th of April. We were tired after a long trip (we came from Helsinki by car) and hungry, and just wanted to have some nice easy food, warm and delicious. Since many things have changed since our last visit, we had no idea where to go. So we choose first place – Peter’s Brewhouse (located in the heart of the old city). German style (well… kind of) restaurant with live music (great music by the way!). It was Friday evening, so place was quite full and very busy, we were lucky to get a table for four right away. Of course service was slow but it didn’t disturb us that much because we were looking around, enjoying the atmosphere. We took Peter’s Brewhouse own beer (yes, I am a beer lover!). It was surprisingly good! As for main course… my husband and his friend ordered currywurst (actually nothing to do with real currywurst), my mom decided to take lamb sausage and I took wild boar sausages. All sausages came with salad and sauce and we also got a bread basket, which was by the way fresh and delicious. Food was very good. As they say: good food, better mood.
Wild boar sausages:
Unfortunately we were sitting next to the musicians; it was a bit loud and not so easy to have a conversation. It was the only minor minus in my opinion. But overall it was a positive experience: tasty food, good beer, live music and friendly staff. What else you need, right? For sure would love to come here again.
Another positive experience was in restaurant Egle. Also located in the Old city. Live music, friendly staff, reasonable prices… It’s like a little paradise. But main reason we decided to go there was the menu. They offered rabbit, duck and lamb! So if you are bored with pork, beef and veal that’s the place for you! But if you prefer regular meat – not a problem, they offer those, too.
My mom took a rabbit in tomato sauce…
…and I ordered duck…
…and it was cooked to perfection. Tender meat… very delicious! I think it was one of the best duck I have ever eaten.
As for drinks… When I travel I’m usually drinking local beer. But Latvian beer is not my “cup of tea”. Only good one for my taste is Valmiermuizas. But if I see my favorite beer on the menu, I order it without a second thought. And this time it was Brewdog Punk Ipa. Tried it in Scotland and fell in love with it.
Another day we went to Jurmala (city by the sea)…
It was quite windy and cold day, so we were trying to find some nice place to warm up. First restaurant what came on our way was restaurant/bar Romantika. But only romantic thing there was the sea view. Prices were higher than usual (I guess they take extra from the view). However menu didn’t impress us much, so we took only an appetizer – one for two.
Even though portion did look small, it was more than enough. Fritter calamari, fritter cheese and typical Latvian snack – dark garlic bread (best with the beer). No wonder. Satisfying… but not really exciting.
There have also been some disappointments… First one – Friday’s. I have visited Friday’s many times, since I was living in Riga and all the time I was very happy with the service, food and atmosphere and I have always advertised this place to all my friends. But last visit wasn’t so pleasant. Service was slow, waiter forgot to bring toast with my mom’s soup, and tomato soup looked and tasted more like a tomato sauce than a soup. Burgers were dry (waiter also didn’t ask what kind of beefs we want – well done or medium), portions were small and salad didn’t look fresh. Only positive thing was the ultimate Bloody Mary – my longtime favorite, still tasting as good as before. We complaint of course and got 10% discount. But unfortunately it didn’t make disappointment to disappear. Don’t think we will go to Friday’s any near future.
Other place was new to us – MoonShine bar/restaurant. It looked funky, interesting and not like anything I saw. Something like Americas 50’s style Cafe. But… prices are high, service is slow and live music is not for free – fee is included in the bill.
* in Latvia tip is not included in the bill, so you are free to leave as much as you feel like or want, depending on how good service you got (usually it’s between 5-10% from the bill).
Riga by night…
Riga by day…
Hope this information was useful!