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Reo

EDITOR RATING
7.0
Food
Service/Courteousness
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7.5
7.0
7.0
NA
Suggestions
Good for date/family
NA
Easy parking
NA
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NA
The first restaurant that served Continental in the Secunderabad shopping area, Riviera was an instant hit. Their sizzlers and pasta were especially popular when there was an English movie playing at Sangeet (which used to be pretty often back then). Sharing premises with what was once the coolest cinema hall in town, this restaurant too got its share of the pie.

A lovely view of the anything-but-lovely S D Road through a curtain of water cascading outside a French window - this is one of the things that Riviera had going for it. Note the past tense. Now the restaurant has lost its sheen and is dilapidated, much like its neighbour. They must both make way for glitzy multiplexes and assembly-line coffee shops. And settle themselves down comfortably next to the dinosaurs.

But it's not time to write that obituary yet. Riviera is still only the second continental joint in the area, and its sizzlers have nothing to fear from Pickles down the road. Serving Indian, Chinese and Continental cuisine, this restaurant has some other delights up its sleeve as well.

If you must go the tried-and-loved way, here's what your meal would be like. Start off with the crispy babycorn or the fish 'n' chips, both very good. Then choose your path. If you've taken the hints so far and decide to go continental, you can either get the lamb pepper steak or its paneer sizzler version. Crab and fish sizzlers are also good, but perhaps not as popular. Pasta-lovers have macaroni and cheese and spaghetti blognaise to choose from.

Riviera also makes good Indian khaana, and the chicken biryani is the most requested item here. With rotis you can have the spicy Murgh Begum Bazar, in a thick gravy. Vegetarians have quite a few side dishes to choose from, like Kofta Paneer, Babycorn Adraki with its interesting piquant flavor, and any of the fresh mushroom curries.

The Chinese menu will have a very well done chopsuey for you. If you're getting noodles or fried rice, order the Chicken (or Vegetables) In Red Pepper Sauce. All the Cantonese dishes like soups and curries are also a hit with the fire-loving Andhra janta.

Sweets here are all Indian, and if it isn't the syrupy Qubani-ka-Meetha, then it must be the creamy Badam Rabadi. The Mango Exotica is a specialty here, and is put together by bringing together the unbeatable combo of mango pulp and vanilla ice cream.

So the next time you find yourself in the vicinity on a movie date, walk up into Riviera. It may not be the swankiest, but they still turn that water curtain on for dinner.
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