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“Forti and his big personality always a winner”
Review of Ritrovo - CLOSED

Ritrovo
Certificate of Excellence
Price range: $15 - $20
Cuisines: Seafood, International, Contemporary, Italian, European
More restaurant details
Restaurant details
Good for: Large groups, Special occasions, Business meetings, Families with children, Romantic
Dining options: Dinner, Lunch, Late Night, Accepts American Express, Accepts Discover, Accepts Mastercard, Accepts Visa, Digital Payments, Free Off-Street Parking, Free Wifi, Full Bar, Highchairs Available, Outdoor Seating, Parking Available, Private Dining, Reservations, Seating, Serves Alcohol, Waitstaff, Wheelchair Accessible, Wine and Beer
Description: Ritrovo was established in 1995 as South Africa's first fully authentic Italian fine dining venue. Over the last 20 years Ritrovo has won more than 50 local and international awards and has become SA's most award winning Italian restaurant. At Ritrovo fresh seasonal ingredients and very traditional Italian regional specialities fuse with old school European restaurant service and a magnificent 10,000+ bottle wine cellar with two internationally qualified sommeliers to guide you through its treasures. With the owners always on hand Ritrovo is an experience to be savoured and enjoyed in comfort.
Itala, Italy
Level Contributor
207 reviews
87 restaurant reviews
common_n_restaurant_reviews_1bd8 108 helpful votes
“Forti and his big personality always a winner”
Reviewed April 7, 2013

Ritrovo will not be Ritrovo without Forti. He always comes by to say hallo to everyone. His food is really good and his wine list outstanding. His vineyard, Saronsberg, in the Western Cape is making his signature wine called 'Nick & Forti's'. The service is excellent, the food very good. Not the venue for a romantic dinner, too loud. Actually the place needs a renovation to make it a bit more contemporary. Other than that. An excellent, authentic Italian restaurant.

  • Visited April 2013
    • Value
    • Atmosphere
    • Service
    • Food
Helpful?
Thank Patricia S
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.

300 reviews from our community

Visitor rating
    168
    71
    38
    15
    8
Rating summary
    Food
    Service
    Value
    Atmosphere
Date | Rating
  • Dutch first
  • English first
  • French first
  • German first
  • Italian first
  • Japanese first
  • Portuguese first
  • Spanish first
  • Swedish first
  • Any
English first
Pretoria, Gauteng, South Africa
2 reviews
common_n_restaurant_reviews_1bd8 2 helpful votes
“Ritrovo is completely overated. 2-3 star experience and a 5 star bill.”
Reviewed April 7, 2013

I took my Wife to dine at Ritrovo, Waterkloof today for her birthday (Apr 2013). I was thoroughly disappointed. Coughed up R653 for lunch. If I visit a restaurant and dine at these types of prices, I want something exceptional; otherwise I'll just go to McDonalds and grab a Mcsomething.

Wasn’t, received at the door in any noteworthy fashion, stood around for a while and a lost waiter kind of seated us after awhile. We were seated at one open table in a very busy part, when there were much less congested areas in the restaurant. I started with my bread that was brought as an appetizer, didn't have a plate to eat it on, just those cheap "Mr. Price" under plates. We asked to move to a quieter part, I had a plate there.

Furniture is old and washed down, seems like the place was hot in the 90's. I kind of had flowers on the table, looks like something a 6 year old plucked in the parking lot and chucked in a little pot a couple of days ago. Rather get rid of it completely I think. No table cloths, just the old wooden top table with no character and chairs that's old, but not old enough.

Waiters are mediocre, they don't talk to you, are not particularly friendly or well spoken and visit your table halve the amount of times someone from Bugatti's would. I accidently made a bit of a mess on my under plate as we waited for food, any descent place would replace that for you in a heartbeat, nope, we sat it out with the dirty under plate. We ordered one starter at R80; it was OK, nothing bad I could say there except it’s not worth 80 bucks, maybe R35-40.

Had a fillet and a T-bone. Fillet was good and soft and moist. T-bone was nice and big and soft, though overcooked, Medium rare should be pink in the middle not the same color throughout. With a mushroom sauce, I was astounded that it was really tasteless. Lots of salt kind of fixed that for me at the end. R195 T-bone.

Waiter billed us for items we did not get or ordered.

I'm not fussy when I dine R200 for two people for lunch and get pretty nice experiences.
but I wasn't impressed at all and did not even want to give the waiter a tip; I gave him a R40 tip just to avoid complete embarrassment. He took the bill a just left, no thank you, goodbye, hope to see you again. Just took it and walked away. I am of the sound belief that you should earn a tip, especially if it’s R65 for carrying two plates and a couple of drinks. Presence is not equal to tip. Service and Personality and Charisma and Knowledge and Attention to detail = Tip.

All and all, I'll never dine there again, why, if there are so many other places you can go feeling fulfilled and happy with a bill of R200. When slapped with a R650 bill for 2 then I want something in return.

  • Visited April 2013
    • Value
    • Atmosphere
    • Service
    • Food
Helpful?
1 Thank LouisMat
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Pretoria
Level Contributor
40 reviews
32 restaurant reviews
common_n_restaurant_reviews_1bd8 18 helpful votes
“Best Italian Restaurant in Pretoria”
Reviewed March 13, 2013

Ritrovo is definitely my favourite Italian restaurant in Pretoria! The food is excellent - the chef introduces himself and the speciality dishes for the day every time we go there - and the atmosphere is warm and inviting. They also have an impressive wine list. Most certainly a place we'll return to time and again.

  • Visited February 2013
    • Value
    • Atmosphere
    • Service
    • Food
Helpful?
1 Thank SAVegetarian
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
delhi
Level Contributor
69 reviews
39 restaurant reviews
common_n_restaurant_reviews_1bd8 30 helpful votes
“One of our favorite restaurants in Pretoria”
Reviewed March 13, 2013

We go here often. Enjoy the people, the food and the atmosphere. My
husband had one of the specials of the evening which he enjoyed. I
had the duck which was very dry and seemed over cooked. First time
I have ever had a meal which was not good there. Great selection of wines.
Enjoyed the evening even though my meat was not good. We all have
off days...

  • Visited March 2013
    • Value
    • Atmosphere
    • Service
    • Food
Helpful?
Thank africanbush
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Pretoria
Level Contributor
20 reviews
12 restaurant reviews
common_n_restaurant_reviews_1bd8 9 helpful votes
“One of our favorite spots in Pretoria!”
Reviewed March 10, 2013

My husband and I love this restaurant and go frequently for dinner when in Pretoria. The service is great, with an interesting and very friendly set of characters running the place. Delicious food and wine! We love the pizza, many of the pasta dishes, and the spicy prawn risotto when it is on special. Superb! This is a wonderful place for a romantic dinner for two, or to take along a few friends. Occasionally you'll have the special entertainment of Forti and friends singing opera. All set in a very tasteful atmosphere with beautiful views over the lush forest canopy above Waterkloof Ridge. This is also a great place to purchase nice wines, which they will sell you directly from their cellar. Be sure to make a reservation, especially Thursday-Sunday.

  • Visited February 2013
    • Value
    • Atmosphere
    • Service
    • Food
Helpful?
1 Thank SATraveler222
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.

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