I received a flyer in the mail recently for Rikka Asian Bistro. The address indicated it was quite close to home and I guessed that it must have opened in the space recently vacated by the closing of another Asian restaurant, Shan. I was right. So on a recent evening, my friend Tommy and I decided to give it a try, knowing they had not been open long, and a bit wondering if they'd have their act together yet. They did!
We were there rather early on a Saturday evening, it was barely 5 PM. We entered and were immediate greeted and shown to a table. Rikka is not a huge place, but is very nice inside and has a defininte Asian feel to it (having never been to Shan, I have no idea if the interior underwent a lot of renovation or not). It was dark, and soothing, and inviting. There were not a lot of tables occupied, but plenty of staff on hand. And each greeted us as we walked by, very friendly. In short order our server, Goon, appeared and took drink orders and offered to answer questions. We did keep her busy with the questions, but she did know the menu and the answers. Well trained staff, for sure! I will also note that several times during our meal a manager came by to check on us as well, I appreciated that.
We started out with two appetizers, the Pork Gyoza and Rikka Spring Rolls. They were both very good. The Pork Gyoza--Potstickers, in other words--were good with a nice flavor and had been nicely fried. The soy based dipping sauce was nice and light, maybe a bit on the sweet side, but very good. The Spring Rolls likewise were very good, drizzled with a more hearty sauce with just a bit of heat and some garlic. I really liked these. The presentation was very nice as well.
I started my meal with a bowl of the Tom Yum Soup, one of my favorites because of its heat and lemony flavor. First off, the presentation was very nice, it was served in a sort of mini-cauldron, nice and heavy, which helped it retain its heat. It really could have served two people and two bowls were brought, but Tommy is not a fan of spicy food. He did taste it, though. I liked it a lot. I've had it a bit more spicy at times, but it was very nice, with a few nice large shrimp in it, and some nice pieces of mushrooms. The star of it for me was the lemon flavor from the lemongrass. It was very good and certainly hit the spot. I'd order it again.
For my main dish, I ordered the Imperial Shrimp, labeled as one of about a dozen or so Signature Dishes. It was very good. About 10 large shrimp had been sauteed in a nice light sauce with some asian vegetables, notably zucchini, carrots, mustrooms, and onion. It was served with white rice on the side. The presentation, too, was very nice with the food somewhat "contained" by some half-moon cucumber slices, Very good looking and the taste was very good. The shrimp were cooked well and not overcooked. This was a very good dish and I ate every bit of it!.
Tommy ordered another Signature Dish--he had the Thai Mango Chicken. The chicken itself was very tender and had a nice flavor, indicating that it was properly cooked with the dish, not thrown on as an afterthought (we've seen that before at some other aisan restaurants!). The chicken had been sauteed in a light and flavorful sauce that got a lot of its flavor from the mango. The sweet and sharp of the mango lent a lot to this dish. Other vegetables that were a part of this dish included zucchini, carrots, and onions. All in all, it was a very good dish.
From start to finish, we had a pretty darned good meal at Rikki Asian Bistro. They also have a nice selection of sushi and sashimi. And quite a few lunch specials. I think I'll be coming here for lunch sometime with some of my coworkers who enjoy both Asian food as well as sushi/sashimi. Our experience here was very good, from friendly, fast, and competent service to good food. One of the better Asians restaurants I've dined at in the area. And they've only been open a month. I wish them luck and longevity. Keep up the good work!