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Platinum Platter Awards 2015

By RigaNOW!. 11.11.2015

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RigaNOW! and its Expert Jury have decided on the winners of the Platinum Platter Awards 2015. These awards are presented to what we consider to be the most outstanding restaurants, hotels and entertainment and shopping venues in Latvia.  

This is the sixth time RigaNOW! has unveiled the winners of the Platinum Platter Awards. And it’s the third time we’ve assembled a jury of experts to help us reach our decision, adding objectivity to the results. The restaurants were judged on a number of criteria, including taste and presentation of the food, service, the wine list, design, style and comfort, and value. Important too is the flexibility to innovate and surprise, so we looked at any developments at the restaurants over the past 12 months. Accommodation criteria included location, quality of the guest rooms, staff and service, food and leisure facilities, ambience and design. Criteria for entertainment and shopping included (where applicable) uniqueness, quality, creativity and decor, quality of the bartending and staff, drinks and food, cleanliness and safety, and value.

 

BEST GOURMET RESTAURANT

Bibliotēka Nr.1

Bibliotēka Nr.1 is one of the best restaurants in Riga that offers modern Latvian cuisine. This is a story about the most beautiful park, endless gastronomical possibilities, and exciting journey through Italian wine fields. Māris Jansons, the Chef, has created a unique library of modern Latvian cuisine which summarize best seasonal produce, rich experience and airy sensations. On one hand, the classic prevails, but on the other, an endless flight of fantasy. Each meal is an unforgettable search for new taste and experience. The restaurant also offers a multisensory enjoyment by incorporating visual, smell and emotional elements that are achieved by the special food architecture.

Runners Up:

Riviera

Vincents

Renomme

 

BEST NEW RESTAURANT

3 Prir

The restaurant has three owners – Mārtiņš Sirmais, Ēriks Dreibants, and Juris Dukaļskis. These names are well known to local gourmands, thus serving as an advertisement. The name – 3 Prir – in old Scandinavian language means “three”. The chef, the waiter and the sommelier are the three whales that hold every successful restaurant. At 3 Prir, all three whales are truly in balance. The interior is modest, yet cosy. Wooden elements are dominant from furniture to the massive bar. The restaurant resembles a house located in a remote corner of a Scandinavian forest. The Chefs use produce typical of northern climate – locally produced ingredients, as well as ingredients found in local forests.

Runners Up:

La Piazza

Grande Brasserie Riga

Allumette

 

BEST BEEF RESTAURANT

Steiku haoss

The restaurant’s signature is an ideally prepared steak, and the atmosphere of the Wild West. The menu offers 17 different kinds of steaks – beef, lamb, game, pork, and poultry, which are prepared using natural spices. Guests can observe the steak cooking process, since the grill is located behind a glass wall. Wood, used in the interior, is excellently supplemented by metal elements from Latvian countryside – table legs, horseshoes and fireplace equipment. Hides, graffiti wall paintings, waitresses in checked shirts and cowboy hats, and performances of the best Latvian country musicians create the true mood of the Wild West. The place is a bit corky, yet the mood and the food is amazing!

Runners Up:

Zila govs

Ribs & Rock

Beef Eater’s

 

BEST RUSTIC RESTAURANT

Rozengrāls

This authentic middle-age restaurant is located in the Old Riga. The premises were documented in 1293 as the first wine cellar of Riga Council. The main hall of the restaurant has 4-meter tall valves, the only underground well from the middle ages in Riga, as well as a fragment of Riga’s defensive wall. The interior of Rozengrāls is matched to its style – small statues, metal pots, beer and wine barrels. In general, the restaurant has a peculiar atmosphere. It is so enticing that you want to return here again and again. The dishes are exquisite, yet expensive. Nevertheless, the food is delicious and really nourishing, as well as stylish – just like the middle ages in our imagination.

Runners Up:

Stargorod

Lido (Krasta)

1221

 

BEST SEAFOOD RESTAURANT

Fish restaurant Le Dome

A Chef’s trade is a nonstop challenging process of creation; therefore, Latvian, as well as European taste trends must be known. This is the moto of the fish restaurant Le Dome. The restaurant daily reveals its guests new nuances of fish dishes provided by skilful use of local farmers produce. The menu provides a full capacity of fish dishes – fluke, cod, herring, zander and other Latvian lake and Baltic Sea fishes prepared in various ways. However, vegetarians and meat lovers also are not forgotten. Le Dome provides a gastronomic journey. The interior is cosy – light tones, soft lighting, and rare photographs on the walls. This is an excellent place for nice meal and unhurried conversations.

Runners Up:

Riverside House

Portofino

Gastronome

 

BEST ITALIAN RESTAURANT

Portofino

Portofino, located in the silent centre of Riga, is considered one of the best Italian restaurants in the city. This restaurant does not need advertisements because the word of mouth travels fast. The restaurant combines two things that clients evaluate the best – fast and polite service, and considerably rapid cooking. The restaurant is easily accessible and parking is not a problem. Nevertheless, the cuisine is the most important part! The employees emphasize that the love for Italian cuisine and their guests materializes in every dish that they prepare, as well as in the friendly atmosphere of the restaurant. The profound number of customers demonstrates that this is not an overstatement.

Runners Up:

Prego

Rossini

Amarone

Mercato

 

BEST ORIENTAL RESTAURANT

Halipapa 

Southern sun and bright colours are usually missing in our daily life of temperate climate zone. However, there is a place where you can forget about everyday troubles. Those who at least once have visited the Georgian restaurant Halipapa definitely want to return there, since this place brings you the warmth of the southern sun and the freshness of the Caucasus Mountains. One of the restaurant’s customers said: “the atmosphere is great, without exaggerations. Everything is delicious and the prices correspond to the quality of the food”. Georgian cuisine is considered one of the oldest in the world. Nowadays, it is also one of the richest. This is proven daily by the restaurant’s team.

Runners Up:

Singh’s

Armenia

Indian Raja

Uzbegims

 

BEST RESTAURANT GROUP

Restau-Rateur

Led by Viktors Ravdive, a group of businessmen Restau-Rateur, which works in the restaurant and other catering businesses, became very popular in recent years. The group also includes the apartments Wooden Villain Dzintari, the restaurants International in Riga and Jurmala, the restaurant Melnā bite and the bakeryBakeBerry. This summer, in Old Riga, they successfully opened a summer restaurant Sezona. The group have a long-term plan – to develop a brand and concept. Viktors Ravdive dreams of his own restaurant empire. His restaurants International turn over more than a million euros a year! In near future, the group plans to expand internationally – to Belorussia, Sweden and possibly Russia.

Runners Up:

CANTUS Group

Leopard

Rosinter Restaurants

Holding (Rosinter)

 

BEST HIP-CHIC RESTAURANT

Zoste

The concept of the restaurant with a concise Latvian name Zoste (an old and nowadays rarely used word with German roots and meaning ‘sauce’) is based on the synergy of organic space and food – the restaurant is a simple and cosy place for eating. The menu includes international cuisine with individual approach; the main element is produce. Local and fresh. The restaurant uses spices from all over the globe, creating different variations of food. The restaurant offers comfort food – simple and delicious dishes which resemble home cooked meals prepared from seasonal Latvian produce. Kārlis Celms, the Chef, creates his own unique flavours influenced by modern American cuisine.

Runners Up:

Zivju Lete

Mio

Fazenda

 

BEST JURMALA RESTAURANT

36.līnija

The location of 36.līnija on the seashore near Lielupe is a considerable asset; however, nowadays, a good location on its own is not sufficient. Lauris Aleksejevs, the owner and Chef, keeps high standards in the kitchen and searches for specific ingredients for each dish. He is good at that; therefore, the restaurant can be proud of having numerous regular customers many of whom are famous and a bit spoiled. A carefully selected wine list provides a wide assortment of excellent wine. The service is friendly, yet without losing self-esteem. 36.līnija is one of the most popular restaurants in Jurmala and it definitely provides delicious dishes.

Runners Up:

Faces

Philippe 

Caviar Club

Giardino

 

BEST WINE BAR

 

Restaurant Vīna Studija

The pride of Vīna Studija is the wine list with more than 700 entities.
The concept of the restaurant is like the business of feelings. At least an architect Uldis Pīlēns, a successful Latvian entrepreneur and the owner of the wine restaurant chain, considers so. In fact, the restaurants Vīna Studija are the serious beginning of wine traditions in Latvia, for wine is like luck – it can be best enjoyed by sharing! The restaurants are not only a place for friends to meet and enjoy a drink. Art exhibitions and work- shops, where guests can learn the basics of wine traditions, regularly are organized here. Vīna studija on Stabu Street de nitely is the place where by unrushed glass of wine and a chat with friends or even on your own.

Runners Up:

Wine Bar Garage

D’Vine

Bar Vinometr

 

 

BEST CHEF

Lauris Aleksejevs

/36.līnija/

Even though Lauris Aleksejevs, one of the best Latvian Chefs, co-owner and the main Chef of the restaurant 36.līnija, thinks that it would be easier to sell nails, since they do not get spoiled, his life’s passion is the restaurant. Lauris considers that a combination is the most important for a Chef. If you can combine in one dish three or four ingredients that at first sight seem incompatible and develop a technique on how to prepare it, you might succeed! Perhaps due to his musical education, his friends call him the conductor of high cuisine. Lauris not only cooks, but also greets guests, helps them choose the right dishes and simply communicates. This brings a cosy mood in the restaurant.

Runners Up:

Māris Jansons

Jānis Sokolovkis

Raimonds Zommers

Ēriks Dreibants

Mārtiņš Rītiņš

 

BEST BAKERY

Safie Turkish Bakery

Safie Turkish Bakery is a nice, small and cosy place where you can enjoy tea and delicious snacks (all of them taste amazing). Even Riga’s Turks consider that this bakery serves the best baklava to this side of the Bosporus, but cappuccino is said to be better than in Istanbul! The compliments are as sweet as Turkish snacks; however, they possess some truth. This is a rare opportunity to try tasty, authentic Turkish sweets in Riga. The owner also is a baker, and the recipes come from Turkish traditional cuisine. Sweets are not the only items served. Many locals have chosen this to be the place for their breakfast. The cosy bakery will always warm you, even in the cold Latvian winter.

Runners Up:

BakerBerry

Kūkotava

Cadets de Gascogne

 

BEST BUSINESS HOTEL

Radisson Blu Elizabete Hotel

The hotel Radisson Blu Elizabete is located in the centre of Riga, about 550 meters from the Freedom Monument and Old Riga. A park Vermanes, located near the hotel, creates the illusion that you are somewhere far away from the city. The beautiful facade and unique inner yard combines glass, steel and textured wooden panels creating dynamic and attractive construction of the building. The hotel’s interior shows the modern and cosmopolite vibe of Riga. The hotel provides 228 rooms, exclusive gym with the park view, and saunas, encouraging you to engage in fitness activities and relax.

Runners Up:

Neiburgs Hotel

SemaraH Hotel Metropole

Wellton Centrum Hotel & SPA

Mercure Riga Centre

 

BEST SPA HOTEL

Baltic Beach Hotel & SPA

A park-surrounded Baltic Beach Hotel & SPA is located in the most famous resort town of Latvia – Jūrmala, just 15-minute drive away from the Riga International Airport. The location of the hotel allows organizing various sport and corporate events. The SPA centre of the hotel skilfully combines best spa traditions of Jūrmala and the newest achievements of the spa industry. Certified by the Latvian Ministry of Health, the SPA centre offers more than 400 different procedures. The hotel provides a private beach with restaurants and cafes. Popular tourist attractions, a train station, restaurants and shops are located nearby.

Runners Up:

Hotel Baltvilla

Hotel Jūrmala Spa

SPA Hotel EZERI

Kurshi Hotel & SPA

 

BEST COUNTRYSIDE HOTEL

Jonathan SPA Hotel

The hotel Jonathan SPA Estate is located in Amatciems, in a picturesque landscape resembling a view from the Grimm brothers’ fairy tale. The exquisite interior of the small hotel complies with the highest standards. Marvellous nature, lakes, fresh air, refined cuisine and comfortable premises. The hotel provides spacious green zone and lake where you can fish. If you catch something, the Chef will prepare it for you! Exclusive and relaxing recreation is the philosophy of the hotel. Here, recreation is transformed into philosophy based on the thought that the spirit flows through the body. By remembering this, it is possible to achieve full recovery of energy, joy and inner calmness.

Runners Up:

Marcienas Manor

Milk Manor – Berghof

Rumene Manor

Dikļi Palace Hotel

 

BEST CAFÉ

Innocent Cafe

This cafe serves arguably the best coffee in Riga already for five years! Here, the best Latvian baristas take care of customers. They have mastered the secrets of good coffee – the right coffee beans, the correct way of grinding, the necessary temperature of the water, preparation technique, and the presentation of coffee. The cafe also offers healthy dishes prepared from Latvian eco produce, for example, nourishing soups. On the weekend, enjoy a brunch with a cup of exhilarating coffee. By the way, this cafe started the brunch tradition in Riga. Its interior is democratic, and the atmosphere is free, which is highly prized by youth – this cafe is the favourite meeting place of Riga’s hipsters!

Runners Up:

Index Cafe

A. L. L.Cappuccino

La Kanna

 

BEST PREMIUM HOTEL

Grand Palace Hotel

This 5-star hotel is located in the quiet centre of Riga. It is surrounded by prestigious UNESCO monuments, major tourist attractions, shopping places, embassies and banks. Initially, it was the building of Latvian Central Bank. Nowadays, it is an elegant and cosy hotel which provides perfect service. The Grand Palace Hotel is the only Latvian hotel included in the hotel alliance The Leading Hotels of the World. Besides, it is a partner of travel agency alliance Virtuoso.

Runners Up:

Hotel Bergs

Dome Hotel & SPA

Gallery Park Hotel & Spa

 

BEST NIGHT BAR

Bar XIII

The bar XIII is a mix of old-school glamour and contemporary touch of emotion. The unforgettable experience is created by the Chef’s snacks and unique XIII cocktails. It can be said that the bar is currently the most popular in Riga! Here, in the Art Nouveau centre of Riga, you can find the cream of bohemian society –. As all legendary bars, the bar XIII is small, the interior is intimate – dark tones with glamorous golden accents. Its central element is a modern variation of the molecular ceiling lamps created in 1960 by Swiss designer Robert Haussmann. However, the main attraction is the cocktails – the best and most original!

Runners Up:

Balzam Bārs

Studio 69

SkyLine Bar

 

BEST WINE BAR

Restaurant Vīna Studija

 The pride of Vīna Studija is the wine list with more than 700 entities. The concept of the restaurant is like the business of feelings. At least an architect Uldis Pīlēns, a successful Latvian entrepreneur and the owner of the wine restaurant chain, considers so. In fact, the restaurants Vīna Studija are the serious beginning of wine traditions in Latvia, for wine is like luck – it can be best enjoyed by sharing! The restaurants are not only a place for friends to meet and enjoy a drink. Art exhibitions and workshops, where guests can learn the basics of wine traditions, regularly are organized here. Vīna studija on Stabu Street definitely is the place where by unrushed glass of wine and a chat with friends or even on your own afternoons and evenings will rush by with enjoyment of great food and wine.

Runners Up:

Wine Bar Garage

D’Vine Bar

 

Vinometr

 

CONTINUE READING





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