With the loss of the Riva Italian restaurant from the Key Theatre, some have been wondering what this meant for Riva, one of the last independent Italian restaurants in the city.
Well, I’m pleased to hear that Riva won’t be disappearing but are moving to a new location – the village of Eye, occupying the building formally run as the popular Toscanini’s. Other businesses I’ve spoken claim city centre costs are forcing them to look outside of the city but thankfully Eye is only a few minutes on the parkway from wherever you are in Peterborough. I’m not sure what the circumstances are behind the closing of Toscanini but the silver lining to this cloud is that at least Riva will live on.
“…an opportunity to raise the game a notch or two”
The Toscanini restaurant has been a familiar sight in Eye for years and has many loyal customers who I’m sure will now visit Riva for years to come. I last visited Toscanini’s myself a couple of years ago and felt that whilst the food was great, the decor was perhaps a little clichéd and felt reminiscent of Italian restaurants of the 70’s and 80’s. Bringing Riva out of Peterborough is perhaps a risky move but I’m looking forward to seeing how Chris will bring the Riva brand to Eye and demonstrate how an Italian restaurant’s menu can be so much more than just pizza and pasta.
On speaking to Riva owner Chris Falco, Chris said that “The [Riva] brand stays the same but is an opportunity to raise the game a notch or two”.
Riva has been owned by Chris Falco since he took over the brand in 2009 from Fratellis (who have other restaurants in the region) and has worked to keep the spirit of independent Italian restaurants alive in Peterborough – despite all the chain restaurants we’ve had open up over the past few years. Riva has also been closely involved with Italian cuisine at the annual Peterborough Italian Festival, cooking up dishes created by renowned chef Antonio Carluccio and also hosting a black-tie event pop-up restaurant in Cathedral Square last year.
Riva’s new address is 2 Peterborough Road, Eye PE6 7YB