Riffs
Riffs

Riffs

  • Dining Style: Casual Elegant
  • Website: http://www.riffsboulder.com/
  • Phone: 3034406699
  • Hours of Operation:
    Open 7 days a week:
    Lunch 11:30-3
    Cocktail Hour: 3-6
    Dinner: 6-Close
  • Payment Options: AMEX,Diners Club,Discover,MasterCard,Visa
  • Cuisine: American, Contemporary American, Tapas / Small Plates
  • Executive Chef: John Platt
  • Dress Code: Casual Dress
  • Accepts Walk-Ins: Yes
  • Additional Details: Bar Dining, Bar/Lounge, Beer, Farm to Table, Full Bar, Happy Hour, Patio/Outdoor Dining, Wine, Wine Bar
  • Special Events: Cocktail Hour daily from 3-6. Discounted food menu, $3 draft beers, $4 well cocktails, and 40% off all wine.

Getting there

  • Cross Street: 11th st
  • Public Transit: RTD and local bus service.
  • Parking: Public Lot
  • Parking Details: Street and public lot parking throughout downtown Boulder/Pearl St Mall vicinity. Entrance is on Pearl St. pedestrian mall.
A word from Riffs
Riffs, Urban Fare. A Boulder foodbar featuring moderately priced, satisfying appetizer portions of Chef John Platt’s artfully prepared diverse cuisine. Carefully chosen beverages. Genuine hospitality. Comfortable social setting. A thoughtful Boulder urban dining experience.
Continued
Foodspotting photos
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Awards voted by OpenTable diners
  • Diners' Choice WinnerFit for Foodies
  • Diners' Choice WinnerOutdoor Dining
  • Diners' Choice WinnerMost Booked
Riffs reviews from OpenTable diners
110 reviews since June 4, 2014
Overall Rating4.4
  • Food4.4
    Service4.4
  • Ambiance4.2
    Noise LevelModerate
92% of reviewers would recommend this restaurant to a friend.
fit for foodies (75)great for outdoor dining (50)neighborhood gem (46)special occasion (28)great for lunch (23)hot spot (21)romantic (20)good for groups (19)vibrant bar scene (11)notable wine list (11)scenic view (10)late-night find (8)great for brunch (6)kid-friendly (4)Show More
  • Lived up to expectations
    Nkosi
    Dined on 9/28/2014
    Visiting our daughter, a student at CU, on Sunday evening for an early dinner. The food was fresh with local specials as well as the standard menu and well prepared. Between the 3 of us we ordered a miso bowl, flash cooked brusselsprouts, tomato curry soup and green pea hummus followed by a kale salad, cedar plank organic salmon and grilled duroc pork loin. We followed this with a flourless chocolate cake, which was excellent - very light, and the special, Swiss roll with ice cream (a little dry). Prices were fair for the quality and variation. Will go back.
    Special Features:
    fit for foodies, good for groups, great for outdoor dining, neighborhood gem
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelModerate
    I would recommend this to a friend.
  • Great food
    OpenTable Diner Since 2005VIP
    Dined on 9/26/2014
    Everything was perfectly with presently and seasoned.
    Special Features:
    fit for foodies
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelModerate
    I would recommend this to a friend.
  • Delicious Food and Cocktails
    Krystal
    Dined on 9/22/2014
    The food is amazing! They have a great happy hour, delicious entrees and the dessert was so good! I would definitely recommend this place to anyone.
    Special Features:
    fit for foodies, good for groups, great for outdoor dining
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelEnergetic
  • Wowed Again!
    NorthwestFoodie
    Dined on 9/13/2014
    The food at Riff's is awesome. Our server was a bit new, so we understood timing wasn't quite coordinated yet. We've eaten there many times now and the food is always consistently good. We'll be back!
    Special Features:
    fit for foodies, good for groups, great for lunch, great for outdoor dining, neighborhood gem, romantic, special occasion
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelEnergetic
  • eventhopoor
    Dined on 9/10/2014
    Great menu, great quality of leek potato soup with crab etc, lovely grilled peach salad and watermelon salad Perfect proportions. Attentive, polite, friendly waiter Too noisy.....rude people at larger, nearby table.....will return soon
    Special Features:
    great for lunch, neighborhood gem
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelEnergetic
    I would recommend this to a friend.
  • Good but service could be improved
    caopolican
    Dined on 9/6/2014
    We had a dinner with friends and had made a reservation for a Saturday night. We could spontaneously change the table from inside to outside which was very nice due to a late summer warm evening. The location is great, we sat basically in Boulder's very nice pedestrian area, could watch street artists and people. Food was really nice, each item with a special twist and all very tasty. Prices are moderate - given the quality. Optically, as well, the food was well prepared. The only slight disappointment was the service: the waiter didn't have the right timing, either he was too quick (e.g. entrées were served while we were still not finished with our starters) or too slow. And his recommendations were unspecific. He could have earned more...
    Special Features:
    fit for foodies, great for outdoor dining, scenic view
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelModerate
  • Great experience
    Lukaleeka
    Dined on 8/31/2014
    We really enjoyed our experience. We would have to say the entrees were our least favorite part of the meal. The appetizer(mussels), salads, and dessert were much more flavorful.
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelModerate
  • always good
    lovenola0217
    Dined on 8/22/2014
    We seem to always make time to dine at Riffs when we visit child at school. Once again, the food was great. Love the variety of items on the menu and the lighter options.
    Special Features:
    fit for foodies, great for outdoor dining, great for lunch
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelEnergetic
  • MuchADO
    Dined on 8/20/2014
    Small plate options are great. We love the Ahi tostada to share.
    Special Features:
    fit for foodies, great for outdoor dining
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelEnergetic
  • Good not great
    EmptyNestDiners
    Dined on 8/19/2014
    I enjoyed the very comfortable, casual feel of this place -- get a table outside or near the big glass windows in front so you can people watch on Pearl Street. Curry mussels and grilled avocado with crab were big hits as appys, cucumber soup was only so-so. Rock shrimp risotto was kind of bland, chicken penne vodka was a little underseasoned, chipotle shrimp were good but you only got three medium sized shrimp -- portion size in general was quite small. Service was pleasant but a little slow. I'd try other places on Pearl Street before coming back here.
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelModerate
  • good food, as always
    locavore
    Dined on 8/19/2014
    Just enjoyed yet another meal at Riff's. Love their menu -- something for everyone! This time was noisier than usual (considering we arrived at 5:45pm), but not unpleasantly so.
    Special Features:
    fit for foodies, neighborhood gem
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelEnergetic
  • Simply delicious!
    SusiqVIP
    Dined on 8/18/2014
    The Brussels sprouts starter was amazing (I know it's odd since I'm writing about Brussels sprouts but ....OMG!) everything else we had was great and the gnocchi was superb! Light and fluffy not heavy and dense. We'll be back for sure!
    Special Features:
    fit for foodies, great for lunch
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelModerate
    I would recommend this to a friend.
  • Innovative
    OpenTable Diner Since 2012
    Dined on 8/16/2014
    Fabulous find in Boulder. Our waiter Diego was attentive and knowledgable. The menu is not extensive, but interesting and innovative. I will definitely return next time I am in Boulder.
    Special Features:
    fit for foodies, neighborhood gem, hot spot
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelModerate
  • Poor quality food
    JakeVIP
    Dined on 8/14/2014
    Food was over cooked. service was great and the restaurant had great atmosphere very disappointing.
    Special Features:
    great for outdoor dining
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelEnergetic
  • fantastic!
    24HourHappyHour
    Dined on 8/14/2014
    Least pretentious, best food in Boulder. Period. Great service, too!
    Special Features:
    fit for foodies, good for groups, great for outdoor dining, romantic, special occasion, great for lunch, neighborhood gem, hot spot, notable wine list
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelModerate
  • Good!
    suzyqVIP
    Dined on 8/1/2014
    Food is always good, sometimes portions are small. Ordered wine & pour was on the small side. Server brought a little extra. When bill came, we were overcharged on wine price, didn't bother to complain.
    Special Features:
    fit for foodies, great for outdoor dining
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelEnergetic
  • Eat here every time we visit!
    GoTribe
    Dined on 7/31/2014
    The food and service here is great! I can't visit Boulder without stopping in at least once!
    Special Features:
    fit for foodies
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelModerate
    I would recommend this to a friend.
  • Wide variety of foods
    Matt
    Dined on 7/30/2014
    Good choice if you have a mixed group of vegetarians and omnivores. Lots of selections and can mix and match plates as you like, all of which were very tasty!
    Special Features:
    fit for foodies, neighborhood gem
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelEnergetic
    I would recommend this to a friend.
  • Disappointing
    OpenTable Diner Since 2010
    Dined on 7/27/2014
    My friend and I ate here for my birthday and had 2 completely different meals (and experiences), He started with the guacamole appetizer which he was moaning over, while my brussel sprouts were just average. My beet salad was Ok but I would not get it again. He loved his cold cucumber soup. My plank seared salmon was really tasteless and a bit overdone. They switched it out for a pesto grilled chicken which was ok but not memorable. My companion got the pork loin shoulder and almost ate the plate. . Our server was efficient but really should not be in a job that requires interaction with the public as this was not his forte. Overall, would not go back.
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelModerate
  • OpenTable Diner Since 2003
    Dined on 7/27/2014
    A nice choice for a distinctive and well-prepared casual meal. Opt for a seat on the front porch, weather permitting or toward the front to enjoy always-entertaining street scene.
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelModerate
  • Excellent With Wonderful Flavors
    OpenTable Diner Since 2005VIP
    Dined on 7/26/2014
    The preparation and flavors were great for soup (cucumber avocado), salad (grilled radicchio), entrees (Ono, and Scallops) and deserts (peach cobbler, and brownie).
    Special Features:
    fit for foodies, great for lunch
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelModerate
    I would recommend this to a friend.
  • Great service, interesting food
    ABMFM
    Dined on 7/26/2014
    Glad we ate outside because the inside seemed too warm. The crust on the peach cobbler was doughy and uncooked underneath. Kale salad too salty. Planked salmon - perfect. Zucchini with the chicken was swimming in too much liquid (-would have preferred lightly grilled and put off to the side). Chicken was great. Burger - perfect. Carrot salad - wonderful combination. Excellent service. -Very nice dinner with friends.
    Special Features:
    fit for foodies, great for outdoor dining
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelEnergetic
    I would recommend this to a friend.
  • Always a great experience!
    justmeVIP
    Dined on 7/25/2014
    I have been to Riff's for lunch, happy hour and dinner and have always had a great experience. The service staff is friendly and accommodating and the food always tasty.
    Special Features:
    fit for foodies, great for outdoor dining, great for lunch, neighborhood gem, hot spot, vibrant bar scene
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelModerate
  • Delightful menu and cocktails
    WillT
    Dined on 7/22/2014
    Great selection on the drinks and food menu. I got a very nice fish dish which had tons of flavor, although the fish was a little over cooked (a bit dry). It was no problem a sip of white wine couldn't solve (I had a good Italian P.G. which they offered by the glass). Small plates are famous and I can see why - we had two and both were fantastic! I love Riffs!
    Special Features:
    fit for foodies, great for lunch, neighborhood gem
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelEnergetic
    I would recommend this to a friend.
  • Awesome
    OpenTable Diner Since 2011
    Dined on 7/18/2014
    Fantastic food one of the best meals in Boulder do not miss! Great happy hour too 40% off all bottles of wine great small plates!
    Special Features:
    fit for foodies, hot spot, vibrant bar scene, notable wine list
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelEnergetic
    I would recommend this to a friend.
  • Great Happy Hour
    jkone
    Dined on 7/18/2014
    We met another couple for Happy Hour last Friday and really enjoyed the Happy Hour food menu. Everything was delicious, and we also ordered items of the regular menu. We LOVED the brussels sprouts dish and the fried zucchini, and the wine was delicious. We also sampled the peach cobbler desert and it was off-the-charts yummy. A fantastic Happy Hour value.
    Special Features:
    fit for foodies, neighborhood gem, notable wine list
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelEnergetic
    I would recommend this to a friend.
  • love this place, but...
    locavore
    Dined on 7/11/2014
    We love Riff's - we've been here numerous times and have always had wonderful food and service. The reason I gave it a lower rating this time is that we happened to be seated next to a woman with a foul-fragranced electronic cigarette. We were inside by the window, which was open, and she was right on the other side. Our great server (whom we have had many times) was willing to help by shutting the window when I said that I love fresh air, but this air was not. However, by then I had a headache from the vapors of the customer who was exhaling within a couple feet from us. Management needs to make a policy decision here -- since "smoking" isn't allowed on Pearl Street, maybe they could extend that to vaping at their dining tables.
    Special Features:
    fit for foodies, neighborhood gem
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelEnergetic
  • Very enjoyable
    JankossVIP
    Dined on 7/11/2014
    We had a very enjoyable lunch in this very cute small restaurant. We sat inside near the back so we wouldn't be too hot on a warm summer day, the service was excellent and our food choices were very good,
    Special Features:
    fit for foodies, great for outdoor dining, great for lunch, neighborhood gem
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelQuiet
  • No complaints - all good
    Lascarco
    Dined on 7/10/2014
    Went to Riffs to meet a business associate. Food was excellent, nice wine selections, good atmosphere. We had a very leisurely meal, partly because the main course took a long time to arrive, maybe an hour. If in a hurry, I would have rated the service a little lower, but this time, since we had lots to catch up on, I appreciated the slow pace. Our waiter also apologized for the wait, and brought us an unsolicited complimentary appetizer as a concession. One note is that if you aren't familiar with the area, you need to park a little ways away at the garage or lot off spruce. The restaurant is in the walking mall part of Pearl Street just east of Broadway, on the north side of the mall, sort of opposite of Old Chicago Pizza.
    Special Features:
    fit for foodies
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelModerate
  • Totally wonderful
    jbzrascal
    Dined on 7/9/2014
    Everything on the menu looks amazing, and we loved what we ate (grilled avocado, Brussels sprouts, beet salad with salmon). Great service and totally delightful
    Special Features:
    fit for foodies, great for outdoor dining, romantic, special occasion, neighborhood gem
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelEnergetic
    I would recommend this to a friend.
  • Enjoyed Our Dinner
    eyeforgoodfood
    Dined on 7/3/2014
    The food was delicious and high quality. The portions were small so we would get an appetizer next time. Will go back the next time we are in Boulder.
    Special Features:
    fit for foodies, great for outdoor dining
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelModerate
    I would recommend this to a friend.
  • Wonderful Anniversary Dinner
    NorthwestFoodie
    Dined on 6/30/2014
    We adventured out of our typical Boulder "fancy restaurants' for our 29th anniversary. We weren't disappointed. Riffs has a great atmosphere with friendly and responsive servers. But the food was the MAIN ATTRACTION. We had oysters with scrambled eggs/bacon, arugula salad, mussels in a fennel/caper sauce and hanger steak with fries fried in duck fat. Everything was seasoned creatively and satisfied the "foodie" in us. Desserts were also not 2nd rate - the chocolate cake and limoncello cake were both awesome. Definitely would recommend to anyone looking for a well thought out menu using farm to table philosophy.
    Special Features:
    fit for foodies, great for outdoor dining, romantic, special occasion
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelEnergetic
    I would recommend this to a friend.
  • disappointed
    bbc1VIP
    Dined on 6/28/2014
    We have been here six times. The last two have not lived up to previous quality. Lack of attention to detail is the main problem. The food lacked its usual zest
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelEnergetic
  • Gnocchi TDF
    Happydiner
    Dined on 6/28/2014
    The Yukon gold gnocchi with Gazel Dell shrooms were enough to keep me happy --light, fluffy, delicious-- but everything else was first rate too. We enjoyed the beet salad and salmon croquettes too, and then the desserts!!! Our friends raved about the plank salmon. We sat outside enjoying the world go by(WAY too loud inside!!). We love Riffs!
    Special Features:
    fit for foodies, great for outdoor dining, great for lunch
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelEnergetic
    I would recommend this to a friend.
  • A good find
    Bouldermom
    Dined on 6/26/2014
    Went to Riffs the other night for dinner. 2 couples. Lots of great appetizers. Not a huge entree selection. We all liked everything except one entree was just ok. Stick to lots of shared appetizers. Root beer float was a hit.
    Special Features:
    fit for foodies
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelModerate
  • Date Nite
    ComidaChica
    Dined on 6/26/2014
    The restaurant was great - food was delish (I had the lamb burger) and our waiter was knowledgeable and friendly. We selected this restaurant for our weekly date night and it did not disappoint! The food is delicately seasoned and came out straight away. Would highly recommend.
    Special Features:
    great for outdoor dining, romantic, special occasion, neighborhood gem
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelEnergetic
    I would recommend this to a friend.
  • cincinn
    Dined on 6/22/2014
    My husband and I enjoy taking visitors to Boulder to Riff's. Everyone is attentive but the attractions of Pearl Street plus the interesting menu make it a special occasion.
    Special Features:
    special occasion
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelEnergetic
  • 80's revisited
    40andhungry
    Dined on 6/22/2014
    The decor and the food reminded me of fine western dining from the 1980's. I haven't seen sundried tomato and overcooked salmon in many many years. My spinach salad had literally 5 leaves of spinach on the plate. Everything glistended with oil and or butter. No seasonings. I didn't finish my appetizer or my entree. The waiter had no clue what to do with us. Everyone else in the restaurant was over 65.
    Special Features:
    kid-friendly
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelModerate
  • Disappointed
    OpenTable Diner Since 2012
    Dined on 6/21/2014
    Food had NO flavor whatsoever. Sadly disappointed group of four.
    Special Features:
    great for outdoor dining
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelEnergetic
  • Good recommendation
    onwisconsin1
    Dined on 6/15/2014
    Brother-in-law recommended Riffs and it delivered on his promise. Very nice, accommodating, helpful staff. Delicious food and a fun, upscale environment.
    Special Features:
    fit for foodies, great for outdoor dining, neighborhood gem
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelEnergetic