River House Restaurant & Raw Bar

4.6
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2156 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 2156 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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L
1 review
Dined 2 days ago
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

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

OT
Cincinnati
3 reviews
Dined 2 days ago
Overall 4food 4service 5ambience 4

Great experience

OT
Baltimore
1 review
Dined 3 days ago
Overall 3food 3service 2ambience 4

Get away trip

TR
Indiana
1 review
Dined 3 days ago
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 3 days ago
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 3 days ago
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

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

NS
Louisville
24 reviews
Dined 3 days ago
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 4 days ago
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

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

s
Louisville
3 reviews
Dined 5 days ago
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

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

JG
Louisville
3 reviews
Dined 5 days ago
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

Great service, food was amazing

AC
Cincinnati
4 reviews
Dined 6 days ago
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 7 days ago
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.

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.

OT
Louisville
1 review
Dined on October 3, 2019
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

Beautiful, excellent place to enjoy. Food was very delicious and drinks are very refreshing.

OT
Tampa
3 reviews
Dined on October 3, 2019
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

Loved it! Great service, atmosphere, and food!

BR
Phoenix
1 review
Dined on October 3, 2019
Overall 3food 1service 2ambience 4

Eaten there twice. First time in late 2018 was marginal, ate there again October 2019, food was terrible. Oysters were bad, octopus was over cooked and the steak I ordered rare was served beyond well done. It was the proverbial piece of shoe leather. Waiter was inattentive. Only thing good to say is the parking is easy and it has a great view of the river. Overall a bad experience. Wil not go back.

MC
Orange County
12 reviews
Dined on October 2, 2019
Overall 3food 2service 3ambience 2

Slow service. Food was over cooked and then undercooked. Most was was not edible. Drinks were good when we got them. One beer sat for 40 minutes before it was served and then was asked if they wanted it cold?! Not particularly busy, but server tried to be nice. Manager didn’t seem responsive at all.

OT
Louisville
2 reviews
Dined on October 1, 2019
Overall 3food 3service 4ambience 2

Really loud. Made conversation difficult

DW
New York Area
6 reviews
Dined on October 1, 2019
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

Our second time here and once again, it was perfection! Drinks were delightful, cornbread is to die for, and our entrees were spectacular! Only sorry we didn’t have room for dessert! Hope to be back again in two years!

B
Louisville
17 reviews
Dined on October 1, 2019
Overall 4food 5service 5ambience 5

We invited customers out for a dinner and we chose the River House! Everything went better than expected. The service was GREAT and the food was EXCELLENT!! Nice variety of foods to eat and the drink specials were amazing. Thank you!!

DS
1 review
Dined on September 30, 2019
Overall 3food 2service 4ambience 5

Great atmosphere, good service, the food was so so... Expected a much higher quality food offering... Filet was small and overcooked. Lobster appeared to be two ounces.. Very few seafood options. Purchased two seafood towers - $125 each - quality just was not there.
If you are looking to go spend money somewhere nice, go for drinks here and then to dinner somewhere else.
DS

C
Atlanta
5 reviews
Dined on September 30, 2019
Overall 3food 3service 3ambience 4

In general, our experience with River House has been mostly positive over the years. We've eaten there multiple times and it's a fairly reliable go-to for restaurant fare.

We had mixed feelings about this recent trip to River House, though. Some of our food - especially the seasonal specials - were very good, while others were disappointing. The clam linguine which should have been a big hit given that it's a seafood restaurant, was too salty and gritty, as if the clams were cleaned well-enough. The cocktails and wine were great, as were the cornbread and oysters.

Our server was great in the beginning but halfway through our dinner, the front of house staff sat two additional large parties in our section so we received little attention from him after that. Unfortunately this impacted our overall experience.

MR
Louisville
10 reviews
Dined on September 30, 2019
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

Spectacular view. Exemplary service. Great seafood options. Lunch with a friend was unhurried, and service was attentive. Can’t wait for weather to cool down enough to sit outside and enjoy the river traffic.

OT
Louisville
1 review
Dined on September 29, 2019
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

Food was amazing and drinks were fantastic! We will be back!

MH
Louisville
2 reviews
Dined on September 29, 2019
Overall 4food 3service 5ambience 5

I ordered the special which was steak medallions and shrimp. The beef was completely flavorless and the shrimp was just okay. I had a half of a medallion and gave my husband the other half which he took a bite and left the rest on his plate.
The corn chowder soup and the cornbread were superb!
Service was excellent

EN
Louisville
3 reviews
Dined on September 29, 2019
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

We had guests in town and we all ordered the clam-bake - it was delicious- everyone loved it

KC
1 review
Dined on September 29, 2019
Overall 5food 5service 4ambience 3

Food was great. We sat outside so the flies got bad after the food was delivered but that wasn’t their fault. We had several items off the menu and then items off the raw bar which were fabulous. Mixed drinks were also very tasty. I would definitely recommend the Sunday brunch too!

OT
1 review
Dined on September 29, 2019
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

There is something so relaxing when you can eat great food and watch the river flow by. River House is something special!

OT
Louisville
1 review
Dined on September 28, 2019
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

We absolutely love River House!

OT
Indiana
1 review
Dined on September 28, 2019
Overall 4food 4service 5ambience 5

Staff was great and did their job well! Food was good and restaurant was nice and clean! Would eat there again. Great date spot or for a smaller group!

SH
Louisville
1 review
Dined on September 28, 2019
Overall 4food 3service 5ambience 5

I will definitely be back. My only real complaint is as a non-seafood eater going with others who wanted to enjoy seafood... I would like to see more non-seafood apps offered.

DW
San Francisco
2 reviews
Dined on September 28, 2019
Overall 5food 4service 5ambience 5

This was our first date night. I picked the River House Restaurant based off reviews from previous customers. Our reservation was at 7:15. We arrived on time, used the valet parking and was immediately seated upon entering the restaurant. We had a great time. The atmosphere was outstanding. If you arrive early enough, try the outdoors seating. We were seated indoors. Great food and company! Will go again!

OT
Nashville
1 review
Dined on September 27, 2019
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

In Louisville for concert

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OT
Louisville
1 review
Dined on September 23, 2019
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

Always a fantastic time at RH

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