Ricciotti: Italian dining by the riverside
I definitely have no regrets attending this tasting at the newly revamped Ricciotti Pizza Pasta Grill by the riverside. Their sleek, modern makeover is definitely an eye catcher hidden behind the bustling Jumbo Seafood by the riverside. At first glance I immediately wondered why I never noticed this tempting restaurant before.
There’s an outdoor bar and alfresco seating that would make a great spot to hang out after work in groups. The inviting interior has a more quiet, private setting and even includes a private dining room that can sit up to 10 pax—although, to dine inside would be like being in a fish tank with spectators as diners outside would be overlooking the private dining room.
Our friendly host for the night was Mr. Walter Visioli, brand manager for Ricciotti, who very attentively explained each dish to us. He also touched on how Ricciotti has been positioned to suit the crowd around riverside—there is more seafood on the menu and the restaurant currently serves a couple of house wines, but they are looking into bringing in a curation of different wines.
We started off the night with some Antipasti.
First off was the Cioppino Soup ($25.00++)—Mixed seafood stew with garlic crostini. This is supposed to be a comfort dish for the Italians which is why all the ingredients are cooked together with a rough presentation. The tomato based soup is tasty with the fresh seafood. I wouldn’t mind going home to this soup after a hard days work.
Next up was the Carpaccio Di Polpo ($18.00++)—Sliced Octopus, lemon & fennel. A very light and refreshing appetiser with citrus notes and succulent fresh Octopus!
The Eggplant Parmigiana ($15.00++)—Baked eggplants & tomato sauce served with focaccia bread, was one of my favourites of the night. I absolutely abhor eggplant, but this is the first time I tried a spoonful then asked for more and unashamedly even dug into others’ portions! There’s no slimy eggplant taste in this dish which is cooked lasagne style with layers of eggplants, cheese and tomato sauce. You could eat this atop the focaccia bread, but since I’m gluten intolerant I tend to avoid bread, and this dish tasted delicious on it’s own. Highly recommended and very affordable.
The last of the Antipasti for the night was the Nizzarda Salad ($19.00++)—Mesclun, fresh tuna loin, quail eggs, green beans, cherry tomatoes, cucumbers and anchovies with a sherry dressing. Loved the quail eggs in this salad. The outer layer of the tuna was a little salty, but when eaten with the greens the taste evens out. If you’re not up for a full meal, Ricciotti has a range of salads to suit many tastes.
Moving on to the Main Courses, we started off with Pollo Alla Milanese ($22.00++)—Breaded chicken, potatoes with tomato salad. This was a little tough and dry for my liking, but loved the tomato salad!
The Grilled Seabass ($28.00++)—Sea bass, tomato concasse capers with baby spinach salad was well executed. The fresh sea bass flesh was tender and flavourful. The salad tastes great for a refreshing mouthful and the potatoes make a delicious side with a roasted finish.
The pasta we tried out was Orecchiette Broccoli E Acciughe ($20.00++)—Ear-shaped pasta with anchovies, broccoli and cherry tomatoes. A lighter dish if you don’t feel like having meat and the broccoli is delicious (I love broccoli, so I may be a little bias).
One of my favourite mains would be the Risotto Ai Frutti Di Mare ($28.00++)—Arborio rice with seafood. The risotto was just nice with a little bite and a creamy texture. Love how it’s plated with the mussels and clams!
The last of our mains were two pizzas. 9” Porcini E Scamorza Pizza ($20.00)—Porcini mushrooms and cow’s milk cheese; and 9” Al Tartufo Pizza ($20.00)—Black truffles, quail eggs and mushrooms. The mushroom pizza was quite average when put next to the truffle pizza that everyone was eyeing. I’m not a huge fan of truffle myself, but the quail eggs with runny yolks caught my eyes and tastebuds. I highly recommend trying the Al Tartufo Pizza when you visit Ricciotti. Another drawing point is that their pizzas are hand-made fresh when they’re ordered!
For dessert we tried the Nuttella Sweet Pizza ($14.00++) topped with chopped hazelnuts. The crust was a little too dense and dry for my liking. Not sure if it was due to us spending A LOT of time taking photos of the desserts. As Shaunieie pointed out, this would’ve been great with some bananas too.
My favourite dessert of the night was the Panna Cotta ($8.00++)—Silky vanilla cream pudding with seasonal fruit sauce. The sweet, tangy berry sauce blended well with the vanilla panna cotta. I would definitely order this on my next visit. A very light and refreshing dessert which is great after a heavy meal.
The last of our desserts was the Tiramisu ($10.00++)—Classic Italian recipe with mascarpone cream, espresso and lady finger. Love the light fluffy cream in this, but my favourite would still be the panna cotta.
Some shots of foodie’s antics during tastings…
Overall the quality of the food was fresh, most dishes was executed very tastefully and all with eye catching presentation. The location is great for friendly group gatherings and date nights as well. It would be great to see the range of wines they add to the menu in the near future.
Thanks to Ricciotti’s Brand Manager, Walter, for hosting us and thanks to Open Rice for the tasting. It was great to meet all the attendees that night too, some I’ve only known by name on Instagram till now. Thanks to Shauneeie for the invite and Amie for the link (Check out her post for a list of everyone who attended).
To finish off this post, here’s a photo of the riverside outside Ricciotti…
“Sorridi alla vita e la vita ti sorriderà.”
Smile at life and life will smile back at you.
Ricciotti Pizza Pasta Grill
20 Upper Circular Road, B1-49/50 The Riverwalk
Tel: +65 6533 9060
Daily 9:30am — 11:00pm