Monday, 5 July 2010

Riga - Part 2

Without wishing to sound like a patronising idiot, I was pleasantly surprised at the quality of the restaurants in Riga and in this post, I'm going to round up three places that I'd happily recommend to visitors to Latvia's capital.

The morning after the wedding reception felt like hell. I eventually roused and after a walk around Riga's charming Old Town met up with some of the guys in a bar-restaurant called
Kalku Varti for a spot of lunch.

Pretty much everyone went for the venison burger and chips with hair of the dog to drink. At the time, the burger tasted like the best burger ever but in reality, I doubt that was the case. That said, I recommend this place for its abundance of outdoor seating.

For dinner, the newlyweds excelled themselves and arranged a group meal for all those who had travelled from the UK and further afield. The venue was Salve, which means welcome in Latvian, and this charming traditional restaurant certainly made us feel very welcome.

I'll let the photos tell the story but suffice to say, we all enjoyed the hearty fare on offer. I had the chicken liver pâté with apple puree to start, fishcakes to follow and filo orange & apple dessert to finish. However, I wish I'd started with bacon with beans and had the three-meat sausage as a main.

On the last night, Mr Pak Choi and I dined at the trendy KID restaurant (also in the Old Town). This was a Modern European joint that wouldn't have felt out of place in London. Mind you the service was too good and the prices too low for it to be a London eatery.

There were amuse bouches but other than the sorbet, I can't remember what they were. I enjoyed my Asian-style fish consommé and PC liked his starter that looked like a dessert. My beef fillet was perfectly cooked, as was PC's lamb with celeriac jenga (my description) and both went really well with an excellent bottle of Pinot Noir from Oregon. A civilised end to an otherwise largely debauched weekend ! 

Some Travel Tips
If you're planning a trip to Riga then I recommend flying with Air Baltic with its twice-daily service from Gatwick. My flight cost a mere £85 including a check-in bag. Other options include Wizz with services from Luton and if you must, Ryanair from Stansted. 

I stayed at the Old Riga Palace Hotel – this was very convenient and a short walk from the Old Town. However if you want to bling it up then the Radisson Blu Hotel Latvija with its 26th floor sky bar looks like a decent option.


  1. That sausage looks like a real ding-dong banger - perfect for post wedding curative meals. It all sounds like a great trip - was Salve serving local food?

  2. Gworm - Salve was serving Latvian food, stuff in the photos like the dumplings, bacon with beans, and of course the superlative sausage.