Riviera Supper Club
It was a dark, cold, rainy Sunday night and yet, the parking lot was full. I had read about the Riviera Supper Club in the Night and Day section in the San Diego Union Tribune. The DIY concept reminded me of a fun restaurant in Hawaii, so I wanted to try it out.
Upon entering, I definitely got a 70's feel from the decor. It was something about the lighting that was hanging from the ceiling. The atmosphere was dark, sophisticated Brady... from the carpet on the floor to the big comfy booth we were seated at.
We ordered two side dishes ($5.50 each): Macaroni & Four Cheeses and Bourbon & Bacon Baked Beans. They were big enough to share. The only drawback was by the time our meats were ready, the side dishes had already been sitting there for a while. Maybe the ideal plan is to order the meats first and then when those are brought out, order the side dishes, so hopefully they'll be brought out when you're done grilling... The macaroni was hearty and made from jumbo pasta shells. The beans had a nice tangy sweet taste.
I think the second picture is of the "Cowboy" Ribeye ($16.50) with garlic bread. Bone-in, perfectly marbled, 16 oz. "All of our steaks are U.S.D.A. Choice grade, aged to perfection. Served ready-to-grill, seasoned with garlic, olive oil, cracked black pepper and kosher salt." You can even get an 8 oz Sirloin Steak for only $8.50 (Early Bird Special - $6.50 from 4-6 PM).
I ordered the Chicken Breast Sandwich ($6.50). Served with a Telera roll, lettuce, tomato, and cheese. 6 oz sounded kind of small, but it was a pretty good serving. Being chicken, it took a very long time to cook, but it was good.
Everyone cooks their meat on a communal grill and uses communal tongs. Depending on how crowded the restaurant is, you may have to wait your turn for an open grill spot. There are different sauces in squeeze bottles to use. Although our server seemed nice, he didn't provide any instructions. It would have been helpful since it was our first time. I noticed that everyone else's plates didn't have the white butcher paper that the meat came in. After looking around, I figured out where to discard it and then clued in another diner.
We didn't bother with dessert ($7.50) since the newspaper article mentioned they weren't that great. Bacon Chocolate Cake sounds interesting, but not something I would actually try.
Overall, this is a pretty cool place to dine with a bunch of friends (especially if you feel like grilling indoors since the weather has been blah recently). You can also enjoy some drinks in their Turquoise Room.
Riviera Supper Club
7777 University Ave
La Mesa CA 91941