Having spotted Viva Ristorante on Bothwell Street a few weeks ago when coming back from the Post Office at lunchtime, it seemed worth trying out. Also, being that wee bit off of the main town centre we thought it'd probably get missed by the hordes of other folk looking for food after the shops closed. If you've ever looked in TGI Fridays just after six, you'll know what I mean - packed out and with lots of noisy kids and not very conducive to having a relaxing meal.
That said, Viva was still pretty busy as it's probably well enough known by everyone working in that area; it certainly seemed busy at lunchtime. It was all reserved up but we got a table on condition we were gone before 8:15 so that wasn't going to be a problem as we weren't there for a huge meal.
They do a two-course, pre-theatre menu for just under £10, seven days a week so that seemed like an ideal way to go for us. However, it's not just a pasta and pizza place as the a la carte menu was pretty tempting and if we'd had more time, I'm sure we'd have gone for that as there were some pretty good looking choices of main course.
The pre-theatre menu was okay and we opted for the Minestrone Soup and Crostini al Funghi to start with mains of Penne Milano and Spaghetti Meatballs. A couple of glasses of the house red to see it down and we were pretty satisfied. The place itself was quite nicely laid out and decorated and the staff were friendly and attentive. I think we'll definitely go back sometime for a more serious outing.
Not everything was perfect though; the movies were full so we had to head home. Still, at least we'd been pretty well fed.
My Rating: 8/10