River House Restaurant & Raw Bar

4.6
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2177 Reviews
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$30 and under
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Seafood
River House Restaurant and Raw Bar is Louisville’s premiere riverfront dining destination. It is the vision of award-winning chef and restaurateur John Varanese and seats 330 in its main dining room, raw bar, and patio. Guests experience a charming “home like” atmosphere as they enter the restaurant from the front porch garden area. Enter through a 20-foot tall by 40-foot wide water wall, and enjoy intimate decor, and a floor-to-ceiling glass wall overlooking the back courtyard and river, River House is open 7 days a week for lunch and dinner. The menu features regional cuisine with a Southern flair and an emphasis on fresh seafood including Grilled Oysters on the Half Shell, BBQ Braised Beef Short Rib, and the Maker’s Mark Bourbon Barrel Smoked Salmon. Our 15 foot raw bar features assorted raw oysters, king crab, and jumbo shrimp. Reservations are recommended. We look forward to serving you!
What 2177 People Are Saying
Overall ratings and reviews
Reviews can only be made by diners who have eaten at this restaurant
4.6based on recent ratings
4.6
food
4.6
service
4.6
ambience
4.3
value
Noise · Moderate
94% of people would recommend it to a friend
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R
Greensboro
12 reviews
Dined 3 days ago
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

We were five in our group visiting here in Louisville, KY. What a great meal. Everyone was very happy with the food and the personnel. Beat time on our trip. We spent two hours there. What a great place.

A
1 review
Dined 3 days ago
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

The food was delicious, the server was so great at introducing us to the menu since it was our first time. It was very intimate and had a warm feel.

LM
Louisville
17 reviews
Dined 3 days ago
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 4

Excellent outdoor dining with fabulous service. The brunch menu was great and we enjoyed the bloody Mary’s.

MZ
Chicago
3 reviews
Dined 4 days ago
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

We were in Louisville for 3 days for the Bourbon Trail. We decided to go to a restaurant that offered some nice fish options and randomly chose this place on Saturday. I have to tell you that we were treated like royalty from the minute we walked in the door! Drinks were tasty, our server was so attentive and nice and went out of his way to give us exceptional service. The food was prepared as described and was way over our expectations! I can't say enough great things about this restaurant. We sat on the outside patio and there was a band playing next door and the whole experience was fantastic including the Bread Pudding!! Treat yourself and go to this place, you will be glad you did!!!

LB
1 review
Dined 4 days ago
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

This was our first visit to the River House as we are new to town. Joey was our server. He was so kind and helpful. We had lots of questions and he had good recommendations. We sat on the patio, listened to music from next door, and walked down by the River after we were done.
The Tower of seafood, avocado salad, Ribeye, Filet were so very good. I can’t decide what I liked best. We ended with French press coffee and the best bread pudding I have ever had. We will be back and will ask for Joey’s section!

TG
Louisville
1 review
Dined 4 days ago
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

Birthday celebration.

OT
Louisville
1 review
Dined 4 days ago
Overall 4food 4service 5ambience 5

We had 6 o'clock reservations and were seated promptly. Our waiter Tyler was wonderful. The food was delicious and they even gave us a complimentary dessert in celebration of our anniversary. They even placed a "happy anniversary" sign on our table. The other staff were friendly and even wished us happy anniversary in passing. The atmosphere on the patio was perfect. It was our first visit and I'd definitely go back.

BN
Cincinnati
1 review
Dined 4 days ago
Overall 5food 4service 5ambience 5

First time at River House and will definitely be back! Very friendly staff! Made us feel important— we chose outside seating which was perfect! Great view, not too close to other tables, great server. Food was very good!

D
Naples
23 reviews
Dined 5 days ago
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

My brother and sister in law came to Louisville wanting to eat oysters, so I recommended River House. Food great .. server great. We had a very nice evening.
Thanks River House for coming through once again

BE
Nashville
1 review
Dined 5 days ago
Overall 4food 4service 5ambience 4

The server was very helpful and attentive without hovering. The food was wonderful with enough variety to have something for everyone age 7 to 43. I love the location by the river and always enjoy walking down to the water and enjoying the quite movement.

CC
Louisville
15 reviews
Dined 5 days ago
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

River House doesn’t disappoint. We love entertaining out of town guests, business acquaintances and family here. The menu has something for everyone, cocktails are spot on and service is exceptional.

OT
Charlotte
2 reviews
Dined 5 days ago
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

Fun ambiance on the river. The service was excellent and the lunch we had was great.

BG
Louisville
11 reviews
Dined 5 days ago
Overall 3food 2service 5ambience 5

Food was sub par priced too high
Service was excellent

OT
Louisville
1 review
Dined 6 days ago
Overall 4food 3service 5ambience 3

It was a bit too loud for conversation. We struggled all evening. My tuna appeared to have sat for a while waiting on the other meals.

JW
Atlanta
9 reviews
Dined 6 days ago
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

Amazing food and server was tremendously knowledgeable and friendly. Fantastic experience and worth the (short) drive outside of downtown. Our server really made the entire evening for us. Only negative was differences in the Old Fashions depending on how you order or which bartender. But even that was quickly fixed.

J
San Francisco
53 reviews
Dined 7 days ago
Overall 4food 4service 5ambience 4

Accommodated our party of 12. Very good wait staff. Everyone enjoyed their starters and entrees. The dramatic old fashioned is a show stopper. Definitely a new experience.
Next time I will request a river view.

OT
Tampa
1 review
Dined on October 15, 2019
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

Excellent service and ambiance. Totally recommend a visit.

KG
1 review
Dined on October 15, 2019
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

River House is consistently excellent! The food is delicious, the service is outstanding and the ambience is welcoming. It is my “go-to” restaurant for great dining experiences.

ZC
1 review
Dined on October 14, 2019
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

The food and service were excellent. The dishes were very creative, and the view is phenomenal.

L
1 review
Dined on October 13, 2019
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

Amazing food, wonderful service! We had a great evening. Thank you River House!

OT
Cincinnati
3 reviews
Dined on October 13, 2019
Overall 4food 4service 5ambience 4

Great experience

OT
Baltimore
1 review
Dined on October 12, 2019
Overall 3food 3service 2ambience 4

Get away trip

TR
Indiana
3 reviews
Dined on October 12, 2019
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 4

It was my Daughter's 26th Birthday, The service and the dinner was fantastic. I had Sea scallops very well prepared the sides were great. My wife had the butterfish for the first time and would get again.

x
San Francisco
24 reviews
Dined on October 12, 2019
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

We frequently eat at River House and this visit was as good or better as previous ones. The food was uniformly outstanding, even the heirloom tomatoes in October. Imagine! Our server was Johnny on the spot, friendly and professional. We shall return.

B
Naples
1 review
Dined on October 12, 2019
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

Great dinner celebrating out anniversary.
Incredible service and excellent food.
We will be back!

NS
Louisville
26 reviews
Dined on October 12, 2019
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

Wonderful meal in every respect. Don’t miss out on fabulous food and stellar service.

T
Louisville
10 reviews
Dined on October 11, 2019
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

Chef John and his team are amazing. Wonderful food. Great service

s
Louisville
3 reviews
Dined on October 10, 2019
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

Sat outside and the service and food and view was wonderful.

JG
Louisville
3 reviews
Dined on October 10, 2019
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

Great service, food was amazing

GB
Indiana
22 reviews
Dined on October 9, 2019
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

I am a huge seafood fan so I was beyond excited to try this restaurant. I was in town for the night with 2 girlfriends from Indianapolis to go to a concert at the Yum Center. It's got a great view of the water and the ambiance of the place is really cool. Our server was awesome. He was very knowledgeable about the menu and the seafood in particular. I knew I wanted to try some oysters and he explained the different ones they had and helped me pick the ones I would like the best. I tried the Chesapeake Bay, VA oysters on the half shell. They did not disappoint. Very tasty. I also shared a half pound of peel and eat shrimp with one of my friends and they were so good. Very fresh. For my entree I really wanted a steak. But I also wanted to try the scallops. Our server suggested ordering a steak and getting a couple scallops to accompany the steak. So I ordered the Grilled Flat Iron Steak & 2 Scallops. It came with this smoked bacon and caramelized onion jam that was absolutely delicious. And the fried Mac N Cheese. That was just okay. Probably my least favorite part of the meal. I also shared some of the creamy lump crab risotto which was A-mazing. And one of other girls ordered the crab cakes so I got to try those and they were delicious too. We were sad that we couldn't take any leftovers with us because of heading directly to the concert. So we ate as much as we could. It was all so good. We were very full when we left. And the prices were very reasonable for how delicious everything was. I would love to come back here the next time I'm in Louisville.

AC
Cincinnati
4 reviews
Dined on October 9, 2019
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

My wife and I stopped here before a concert at the arena downtown. Fantastic cocktails and food. We had the Paloma and Paper Plane from the bar and they were delicious. We shared the tomato and mozzarella salad as an appetizer, and ordered the butterfish special and brussel sprouts. The food was prepared perfectly. Our server was very nice and helpful in making our selections. The dining room was very nice with a large bar. Outdoor seating looked very nice with a great view of the river. It was just a bit chilly the night we were there. I would certainly go again

KS
Louisville
9 reviews
Dined on October 8, 2019
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

Thoroughly enjoyed the entire evening! Greeting upon arrival and at our table with birthday wishes. Food, service and atmosphere were excellent in every day. Sunset over the River ... awesome!

OT
1 review
Dined on October 6, 2019
Overall 4food 4service 3ambience 4

We had reservations and was seated promptly. Waitress wasn’t that good. Only checked on us once. We had to ask another staff member for the signature corn bread in which we had already asked our waitress about. We also had to flag down someone for more water. Food was good and we didn’t wait excessively for it.

OT
1 review
Dined on October 6, 2019
Overall 4food 4service 4ambience 4

We had a nice brunch celebrating two birthdays in the family

c
Nashville
24 reviews
Dined on October 5, 2019
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

This was one of the best dining experiences I've ever had. The vibe of the place is awesome. We sat outside and the view was amazing. Our server was perfect. She had plenty of great suggestions and took really good care of us. The food was the real star of the show though. We had the filet and scallops and WOW!!!!! Best ever!. If you are looking for an awesome dinner at at amazing place, you must go to River House!

F
1 review
Dined on October 5, 2019
Overall 5food 4service 4ambience 5

Food presentation was wonderful. Me and my husband ordered both fish specials of the night. The differences of portions was very different. My overall plate was about 1/2 of the portion he received. My special was very tasty and my husband enjoyed his as well but stated there were too many flavors going on in the dish.
If you are a bourbon drinker then the smoked manhattan is a must to try.

D
Indiana
9 reviews
Dined on October 5, 2019
Overall 5food 5service 4ambience 4

Excellent food. Overall good service. Certainly one of the new high end restaurants in Louisville.

BJ
Louisville
9 reviews
Dined on October 5, 2019
Overall 3food 3service 4ambience 3

Was ok. The more the restaurant ages, the more I can tell it is a redesigned motel. Service was good. We were seated quickly. Food was just OK. Pureed radishes is a bit too vivid a purple to be appetizing.

g
Louisville
14 reviews
Dined on October 4, 2019
Overall 4food 3service 4ambience 4

We had dinner with out of town friends who were visiting and ordered from the regular menu. The complementary fried stuffed squash flowers and cornbread were excellent. The cheese board which was very good. My friends had the short rib and the shrimp. I had the scallops and my wife ordered the stuffed avocado salad. We also got the butternut squash and seasonal vegetables. Everything tasted good. However, there was way too much food. My dish had 3 scallops and an abundance of grits. Less grits and a 4th scallop would have improved it. It also was very sweet. Everyone liked their dish, but no one was able to finish it. We ordered a sorbet to share, but they were out and compensated with a complementary frozen champagne dish. It was too sweet for us. If you like sweet and an abundance of carbs, this is a good place. The service was excellent.

OT
Louisville
1 review
Dined on October 4, 2019
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

River House is my favorite restaurant in Louisville. The staff is always attentive, knowledgeable of the menu, and just all around great service. The food is amazing!! We have not had anything we didn’t like. The Shrimp and Grits is the best I have had (don’t tell Charlestown,SC). Consistent in service and delicious food.

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