May 2 2015

M’Archers

M’archers is a restaurant, deli and bakery on Strelnieku street in Riga, in the quiet centre of Riga. It is the second restaurant by the celebrity chef Martins Ritins, and in contrast to his flagship restaurant Vincents, which is located close to M’Archers, M’Archers is a more casual restaurant. When you first enter the restaurant you see a wide range of freshly baked bread and pastries, a little deli shop that has amazing cuts of beef (the sort of cuts I can see at my butcher in London and have not seen in Riga before, including Australian wagyu beef), expensive chocolate, olives, pasta, fresh vegetables (including beautiful coloured tomatoes) as well as salads and cakes. Martins Ritins has done an incredible job sourcing all these ingredients and producing all these cakes and breads and I have not seen it anywhere in Latvia before, and it looks like a deli you could find in Knightsbridge in London.

There is also a restaurant at the back of the deli, where I went for lunch with my fiancé and friends Guna and Arturs. The restaurant was half full throughout our meal, which is a very good sign for a Latvian restaurant. Another interesting thing that Guna and I noticed was that whenever a group of tourists entered wanting to drink coffee, the waitresses sent them away and said this was a dining restaurant and you could not just have a coffee here. So when you come here, make sure you order food. The dining room is decorated in a 1930s Latvian style (some of the golden years of Latvia before the WW2), with beautiful old wooden furniture, an old clock decorating one of the walls and various other antique objects, you can spend some time just looking at the various things around the room.

The menu consisted of starters and main courses and starters were on average EUR15 and main courses EUR 20, although you could find cheaper options. The prices are not cheap for Latvian standards, but when you get the food, you know what you pay for. Besides the main courses and starters you can also go to the salad deli counter and chose to eat some of their delicious international-influenced salads (2 types of salads for EUR 11 and 3 types for 14.50). Guna and I decided to have 2 different salads each from the salad counter and we ended up sharing them among the 4 of us (as the men attacked our salad plates). We also then ordered 1 main course each

There was a wide range of salads and most of them so much more interesting than your average salad using premium ingredients and very colourful and nicely arranged. The one that Guna and I were extra keen to try was the Asian noodle and seaweed salad with prawns. It was slightly spicy and had huge prawns, and they were not stingy at all with the portion they gave us. I also tried the chicken Caesar salad with delicious parmesan, crispy bacon, huge chicken pieces and big croutons, a premium take on Caesar Salad and a salad of green beans, asparagus and peas. We also shared an aubergine topped with garlic, yoghurt, tomatoes and parsley. If all salads were like these, people would not have a problem eating salad all day every day.

I chose a main course of Borsch for EUR9.50, the traditional Ukrainian beetroot soup, which is popular in Latvia. I always like to have dishes I had in my childhood when I visit Latvia these days. The Borsch was very good, thick, you could taste the beetroot and the meat was chunky and delicious. This was miles better than the borsch I used to have in my Latvian school canteen. It was another dish made special due to premium ingredients. Arturs and my fiancé ordered the rib eye steak for EUR 29 (you could also have a striploin steak for EUR25 which is the same as sirloin, just named in a less used name), All the steaks that M’Archers serve come from Gotland, a little island belonging to Sweden, midway in between Sweden and Latvia. The steak was served with a mushroom sauce, lambs lettuce salad and some onions. The steak literally melted in your mouth, and I said it at the time when I ate a piece, and will repeat it here, I thought this was the best steak I have had in Latvia, very very delicious. Guna ordered a burger that was not cheap and cost EUR 12 but it also used meat from Gotland cows and there was a lot of meat in the middle of it, cooked medium, on par with some of the best burgers in London, which is the place for burgers at the moment.

As the cakes that were placed in the deli looked so amazing we also decided to have a few of these and share. Guna and Arturs loved the goats cheese caramel cheesecake which was topped with caramelised macadamia nuts, and I shared this with Guna. Arturs said when he first tried it he was amazed and it is now one of his favourite desserts. I thought it was excellent. It did not taste too much of goats cheese, but it added that kick to the sweetness of caramel, it was also a very dense cheesecake, which intensified the flavour. My fiancé ordered an equally amazing cake, a white chocolate/ mango sphere cake, which when you opened it was filled with mango cream, that almost looked like raw egg yolk, it was also mouth-wateringly delicious. If you want to have a party in Latvia and buy some cakes and impress your guests, this is the place where to buy them.

I was so positively impressed with M’archers. I thought the food was excellent, from the salads to the cakes and I love the deli at the front, and if I lived in Riga would buy a lot of my ingredients from here. Guna said the only problem were the waitresses, which at times did not know the right time when to come and take your order or when to approach you, and I do agree maybe they could have been a bit better, but overall, such a wonderful place in Riga.

Date: 02/ 05/ 15
Location: Riga
Price for 4 people: Arturs kindly paid for our meal so I did not see the bill

Maija rated: 

4.50

Location: 

M’Archers
Strēlnieku iela 1A, LV-1010
Riga
Latvia
LV
M’Archers Reviewed by Hungry Bee Maija on . Rating: 4.5