River Café

4.5
3285 reviews
icon/ic_price_rangeCreated with Sketch.
CAN$31 to CAN$50
icon/ic_cuisineCreated with Sketch.
Canadian
Top Tags:
  • Scenic View
  • Special Occasion
  • Romantic
An extraordinary dining experience is to embark on a journey. We have created a beautiful place in an extraordinary setting and have tended to the details that make you feel at home: staff who care, chefs who are passionate about quality and the regional seasonal ingredients that bring to your palate a taste of place.

We are located in the middle of Prince's Island Park and we are accessed on foot via one of four bridges or causeways. Parking is available on the street in the Eau Claire area, underground at Eau Claire Market for a flat fee of $5 on weekends and evenings, or across from Memorial Drive. We look forward to welcoming you soon.
Dining Style
Casual Elegant
icon/ic_cuisineCreated with Sketch.
Cuisines
Canadian, Farm-to-table, Wild Game
icon/ic_clockCreated with Sketch.
Hours of operation
Open 7 Days A Week.
Lunch, Monday to Friday from 11am.
Dinner, Monday to Sunday from 4:30pm.
Brunch, Saturday and Sunday from 10am.
icon/ic_phoneCreated with Sketch.
Phone number
(403) 261-7670
icon/ic_new_windowCreated with Sketch.
icon/ic_paymentCreated with Sketch.
Payment options
AMEX, MasterCard, Pay with OpenTable, Visa
icon/ic_dress_codeCreated with Sketch.
Dress code
Business Casual
icon/ic_chefCreated with Sketch.
Executive chef
Matthias Fong
icon/ic_private_diningCreated with Sketch.
Private party facilities
For an intimate gathering of 8 guests or a stylish cocktail party reception of 250, we are pleased to cater to your every need. Private and semi-private events are available. Please contact our Event Manager for more information, events@river-cafe.com
icon/ic_contactCreated with Sketch.
Private party contact
Hannah Petkau: (403) 261-7670
icon/ic_cateringCreated with Sketch.
Catering
Enjoy an exclusive cocktail party or dinner in your home presented and prepared by River Café. Our accomplished culinary team will prepare an exquisite menu tailored specifically to your event, executed by our professional service team. Experience a culinary journey presented with the elegance, beauty, and professional service. You and your guests can relax while we look after all of the details.
icon/ic_neighborhoodCreated with Sketch.
Neighborhood
icon/ic_parking_detailsCreated with Sketch.
Parking details
Paid parking is available on the street during the day and no charge after 6pm. Free street parking on Sundays. Heated underground parking at Eau Claire Market for a $5 flat rate evenings and weekends.
Additional
Bar Dining, Beer, BYO Wine, Cocktails, Corkage Fee, Fireplace, Full Bar, Non-Smoking, Outdoor dining, View, Weekend Brunch, Wheelchair Access, Wine
What 3285 People Are Saying
Overall ratings and reviews
Reviews can only be made by diners who have eaten at this restaurant
4.5based on recent ratings
4.5
food
4.5
service
4.7
ambience
4.1
value
Noise · Quiet
92% of people would recommend it to a friend
5
4
3
2
1
Sort by
Newest
Filters
5.0Dined 3 days ago

Beautiful setting, excellent food and service. Try the trout and the turkey.

Report
Helpful
5.0Dined 3 days ago

The location can’t be beat! The bison burger was fabulous!

Report
Helpful
2.0Dined 4 days ago

Food was served after 1 hr. We asked several times but all we got was a rude answer from the waiter. He was deliberately hiding from us. They invited us to the burgers after all but the damage was already done. Really disappointing.

Report
Helpful
5.0Dined 4 days ago

Server did not attention to our table. Keapt wait to get dessert menu but she never come so asked other server for it. We weren't happy that don't get any help from server so let manager know about the issue. Very quickly manager came to talk to us and figured the problem. Amazing food! Fast feed back from manager:D

Report
Helpful
4.0Dined 4 days ago

Food was excellent, there was a smell of dead fish occasionally while we were eating outside.

Report
Helpful
5.0Dined 5 days ago

Excellent food, very friendly and knowledgeable staff and great atmosphere.

Report
Helpful
5.0Dined 5 days ago

A fantastic brunch on one of Calgary's most beautiful patios. Wonderful food in a beautiful & serene environment. A must-do summer treat.

Report
Helpful
5.0Dined 5 days ago

Reliably good! I love brunch at River Cafe. Great summer patio.

Report
Helpful
5.0Dined 6 days ago

Thanks. Absolutely fabulous service, great food, lovely atmosphere

Report
Helpful
4.0Dined 6 days ago

We were disappointed that the birthday we were celebrating wasn't at all acknowledged by the staff (despite having put a special note in the reservation). Overall it was a nice experience though the A/C was very high in the restaurant and many of the female diners requested blankets to wrap themselves in.

Report
Helpful
5.0Dined 6 days ago

The server we had was phenomenal! The setting was perfect and the food was great!

Report
Helpful
4.0Dined 6 days ago

River Cafe is our favourite restaurant in Calgary, we go there frequently and on this visit decided to bring our guests from England visiting for the Stampede to River Café as we believe it is the finest restaurant we have. The food is always brilliant and today was no exception. The service is normally some of the most professional and flawless. Today was not very good service by our main server. Forgot the wine order but brought the beers? Had to be reminded. Wine didn’t make it until well after the starters were finished by all. He excused the tardiness as absence of a bartender when he went to place the order. Our guests asked why others had bread and we didn’t. We asked if we could have bread, he clearly had forgotten, got busy with taking next tables order and requested bread from one of the runners and he realized he’d forgotten again. He brought the coffee order forgot the tea, had to be reminded. He excused the delay as the patio got very busy very fast. When you’ve dropped the ball several times making excuses only makes it worse. Just apologize and be extra vigilant to make the rest of the service exceptional to recover. Our server was not up to the standards of River Cafe in my experience.

Report
Helpful
5.0Dined on July 12, 2018

A beautiful evening on the patio, complete with outstanding food and drinks, and fantastic service. River Cafe is an absolute gem in our city, and one of our favourites.

Report
Helpful
4.0Dined on July 12, 2018

Nice, rustic environment. Food was good except my wife’s duck was a bit more well done that she had ordered which was medium rare. Service was very good. Dined there during Calgary Stampede so there was large, noisy groups.

Report
Helpful
4.0Dined on July 11, 2018

The lunch menu was disappointing. Three female foodies struggled with the selection.
There was only one salad on the menu, no pasta, only one flatbread selection.

Report
Helpful
5.0Dined on July 11, 2018

Took my boyfriend for his birthday. We ordered the Chef’s Tasting Menu with wine pairings. It was fantastic! Great dishes that we may have not ordered otherwise, the exposure to new ingredients and flavours was greatly appreciated! Service was fantastic. We will be back!

Report
Helpful
3.0Dined on July 10, 2018

it was Stampede week so it was very noisy with a large table next to us after they left it was much quieter and we could enjoy the ambiance.

Report
Helpful
5.0Dined on July 10, 2018

We had a first rate experience. The wives had trout which was outstanding: the husbands had the hamburger which, in my opinion was good but not great. Overall the dining experience was great; I look forward to coming to the River cafe again.

Report
Helpful
5.0Dined on July 10, 2018

Excellent food and service, always one of our favorite patios in the city.

Report
Helpful
5.0Dined on July 10, 2018

Amazing find. Wonderful cuisine
Great use of wild game

Report
Helpful
5.0Dined on July 8, 2018

The River Cafe is a definite must do while in Calgary! The food was exceptional, the staff very friendly and the atmosphere was wonderful. We were a party of four and all of us raved about the food during our stay in Calgary. You cannot miss this gem!!

Report
Helpful
5.0Dined on July 7, 2018

I just arrived in Canada to visit my wife who is on a 5 week job here, and was looking for a great place to take her. I just happened to see the River Cafe while I was walking through the park, and thought we'd give it a try. It was such beautiful scenery, and the menu was fantastic. I had the Halibut, and it was cooked exactly perfect - medium rare, which is usually chef's preference, but usually in the US, they overcook fish because they're worried about it being undercooked. My wife had the duck, and it was very flavorful and tender. Exceptional wine list, and the service was very attentive and friendly. Would definitely recommend. We also saw lots of geese, and beaver in the river on our walk to the restaurant, which was an added bonus!

Report
Helpful
5.0Dined on July 7, 2018

Have been there multiple times when in Calgary. Have never been disappointed and don’t plan on it. Rustic look, extremely professional staff and a menu that’s to die for.

Report
Helpful
2.0Dined on July 6, 2018

Each summer we try River Cafe and each time we say we will not return. The food is good and the setting lovely (unless you end up inside which often happens even if your booking was made ages ago. The servers are personable but not attentive. Water glasses are not refilled and I was asked 3 times in succession if I wanted still or sparking. And the. The wrong water was poured. After ordering, we waited 1 1/2 hrs for our entrees. River Cafe needs more servers and more kitchen staff.

Report
Helpful
5.0Dined on July 6, 2018

Beautiful outdoor experience to celebrate a Birthday 🎂🌻

Report
Helpful
5.0Dined on July 6, 2018

Everything was amazing!

Report
Helpful
5.0Dined on July 5, 2018

Went to River Cafe to celebrate my friend's birthday. Wasn't too keen on the menu before we went. (Had to do my homework). Well, you can trust River Cafe to make something that isn't your favourite- your new favourite! I'm so glad I trusted the reviews because our meals were spectacular. A very special dinner. This place will not disappoint!

Report
Helpful
5.0Dined on July 4, 2018

Brought our visitors from England down to the river. Perfect evening.

Report
Helpful
4.0Dined on July 4, 2018

Excellent!

Report
Helpful
4.0Dined on July 3, 2018

This place is good. We just regret that service is too fast. You feel that you have to hurry to finish and leave the restaurant. And we ordered some pâté which was good but you don’t have enough bread or crackers with it.

Report
Helpful
2.0Dined on July 3, 2018

This is the second time we have had a disappointing experience after many good ones. The service was just OK. Our dinner arrived before our before dinner drinks and wine. At $44 for halibut you'd think we would get more than one piece of bread cut in half. During our meal we were asked if we'd like more bread and we received another 1/2 slice. Way too expensive for this type of experience. We will have to hear a lot of good things before returning.

Report
Helpful
4.0Dined on July 2, 2018

The quality of food and service was impeccable as usual, but overall, this place is feeling a bit tired. It’s a fine line between rustic and run down, and I think River Cafe is on the wrong side of that line. Time to freshen things up.

Report
Helpful
5.0Dined on July 1, 2018

River Cafe has always been my favourite restaurant in Calgary. The ambiance is second to none and when combined with the incredible food, service, and value, there is never any hesitation that the experience will be worthwhile. I'm thankful I live in Calgary and can visit several times a year.

Report
Helpful
3.0Dined on June 30, 2018

Lovely brown butter hollandaise and roasted potatoes. Perfectly cooked eggs.

Report
Helpful
5.0Dined on June 30, 2018

A real jewel! The food, mostly locally sourced, is imaginatively and beautifully prepared. This restaurant would do well in any city of the world, and if in Michelin or James Beard award rating areas, would easily vie for top rankings in both. Imagine rainbow trout with wild rice, rutabaga pure, roasted radishes followed by a cucumber tart. Wow.

Report
Helpful
2.0Dined on June 30, 2018

We've been to River Cafe on other occasions and have been generally impressed with the food, atmosphere, ambiance and service. This past experience left us wanting on several levels. The menu selections are significantly fewer than previous visits. The main ingredients were really tasty - the unfortunate choice by the chef to complicate the entree with a myriad of sauces and additions didn't allow the main ingredients to shine through - we both felt that less would have been more. As for service, our server was very friendly and careful to help with food allergies; unfortunately we saw very little of him. As an example, waiting over 20 minutes from the time a dessert menu is dropped at the table before touching base with us was not what I would associate with a fine dining experience.

All in all, we left feeling that we wouldn't be returning again. The location and setting is beautiful, but this was a fine dining price without the fine dining delivery.

Report
Helpful
4.0Dined on June 30, 2018

Very good, except disappointed that we couldn't use our Gift Card, told computer was down.
First time visit.

Report
Helpful
5.0Dined on June 30, 2018

Anniversary

Report
Helpful
5.0Dined on June 30, 2018

Friendly staff and service.
Very accommodating.
Great food but a bit overpriced. Still delicious!
Highly recommend and will definitely come back!
Thank you!

Report
Helpful
5.0Dined on June 29, 2018

Great ambience and great food. Charming and cozy hidden away on the Bow River on Prince's Island. A real highlight of any visit to Calgary.

Report
Helpful
1
2
3
83