Eight Rivers Restaurant Review, Couples Tower Isle Jamaica
Rewards Credit Cards
Avatar_160_hilary
Hilary Stockton
Google+

My Award Booking Service helps travelers book first class and business class with miles and points. As an independent affiliate of Cadence, I also have access to Virtuoso, Four Seasons Preferred Partner, Peninsula Hotels PenClub, Dorchester Diamond Club, Belmond Bellini Club, Ritz-Carlton STARS, Starwood Luxury Privileges, Rocco Forte and other 5-star hotel partners, so I can book, for no extra cost, your perfect luxury hotel or luxury cruise with VIP amenities not available anywhere else. Become a client and upgrade your stay!

GOT A BLOG POST IDEA?
Have a travel question we haven't covered yet? Want to share your secrets for traveling well for less?

This Eight Rivers Restaurant Review is part of a Jamaica trip report including reviews of Jamaican all inclusive resorts, restaurant reviews, and things to do in Ocho Rios, Jamaica. For the prior post, see Couples Sans Souci Jamaica All Inclusive Resort Review

Eight Rivers is the signature restaurant at Couples Tower Isle in Jamaica, where I recently stayed. And as you probably know or guessed, "Eight Rivers" is English for Ocho Rios, the Jamaican town where the resort and restaurant is located. As at most all inclusive resorts, you need to make a reservation, and it's best to do this as soon as you arrive since it's first come, first served. As the resort's fine dining restaurant, there's a dress code--men need to wear collared shirts, slacks and closed toe shoes. There's no need to dress too formally though--I wore a casually elegant cotton sundress, and aloha shirts with nice slacks would be fine for men.

When I arrived, I was initially greeted by one of the servers, and the host came over to welcome me and show me to my table. I was given a very comfortable banquettes in a half moon shape, and would request this if possible. The restaurant is romantically and dimly lit, so it's a bit hard to see in my photo, but there are soaring ceilings, and each table has tea light candles and a spray of orchids:

Eight Rivers Restaurant Review, Couples Tower Isle Jamaica

 

My server introduced herself and offered the menu. I'd already looked at the menu displayed outside the restaurant, but I asked the server for her recommendations for the appetizer and soup. There's no wine list, as the wines are the same ones used throughout the resort, a choice of a Chardonnay or Sauvignon Blanc for whites, and a Merlot or Cabarnet Sauvignon for red. They're drinkable and the Cab especially is very decent, but I'm guessing retail at no more than $12 or so a bottle.

Eight Rivers Restaurant Menu, Couples Tower Isle Jamaica

 

I was offered various bread rolls, which I declined in order to save room for the meal (plus, ever since Maison Kayser opened in my 'nabe in NYC, I've gotten a lot more picky with the bread I eat!). For the appetizer, I selected Caribbean Crab Cakes, and they arrived quite quickly. They were nicely crusted on the outside and piping hot inside, with plenty of crab in the two small cakes. The crunchy leeks and Asian sweet sour sauce were fine as an accompaniment, although I personally would have preferred a mango or other tropical fruit salsa alongside.

Eight Rivers Restaurant Review, Couples Tower Isle Jamaica

 

For the soups, it was hard to choose between the Lobster Bisque with Brandy and the Pumpkin & Plantain Cappuccino, but I decided to go with the pumpkin soup, since it came with Jamaican Jerk Sausage. The sausage was in the bowl, and the server poured the hot soup into it tableside, a nice touch. The soup was good, but what really made it was the jerk sausage, which was definitely spicy and complemented the pumpkin very well.

Eight Rivers Restaurant Review, Couples Tower Isle Jamaica

 

I skipped the Classic Eight Rivers Salad for 2, although I saw the salad cart being wheeled around so that it could be prepared tableside. 

A nice touch was a palate cleanser of tropical fruit sorbet. There was a refreshing and distinctly citrusy flavor that I couldn't quite place--it tasted a bit like pomelo.

Eight Rivers Restaurant Review Couples Tower Isle Jamaica - Tropical Fruit Sorbet

 

For the entree, I ordered the Rack of Lamb, which came with a pimento glaze and Lima bean Ragout. I'll confess I wasn't such a fan of the ragout, since I don't particularly care for beans to begin with, but the lamb itself was perfect prepared to just under medium, which I'd requested, and very flavorful with the pimento glaze. 

Eight Rivers Restaurant Review Couples Tower Isle Jamaica - Rack of Lamb

 

The desserts were classics: chocolate fondue, creme brulee, Bombe Alaska and Crepes Suzette. I decided on Crepes Suzette, and it was an excellent rendition, with warm crepes served with seville orange, a dash of coconut rum, and toasted almond ice cream on the side. My only critique would be that the ice cream was slightly icy, probably from being left out and refrozen, but the flavor was excellent.

Eight Rivers Restaurant Review Couples Tower Isle Jamaica - Crepes Suzette

 

I was also very happy that Eight Rivers offers Mighty Leaf Tea for its tea selection, as these are much better than the typical tea bags, with whole leaft tea in a silky pouch. Eight Rivers was out of Moroccan Mint, so I settled on Earl Grey Decaf instead, and asked for milk, which was quickly brought. Once I'd finished it, a friendly server (not mine, but one who was passing by) asked if I'd like more hot water, which  I appreciated. 

Eight Rivers Restaurant Review Couples Tower Isle Jamaica - Mighty Leaf Tea

 

The Verdict: Eight Rivers delivers a true fine dining experience at Couples Tower Isle, with excellent food, professional and friendly service, and a romantic ambience. There are of course limitations--don't expect an amuse bouche or Michelin star level experience, especially as there's no wine list separate from what Couples Tower Isle serves, and the servers are not as well versed in the dishes as at, say, Eleven Madison Park (I asked what was in the tropical fruit sorbet and she couldn't tell me) but the overall experience should delight most guests seeking a more intimate dinner that is still included in their all inclusive pricing. Of course, private dinners at Couples Tower Isle are also available at additional cost.

The Executive Chef for all four Couples Resorts is Stefan Spath, a veteran chef who hails originally from Germany and has been with Couples for 12 years. Here's a brief interview with him:

 

If you've been to Eight Rivers Restaurant in Jamaica, what was your experience?

Disclosure: I was a guest of Eight Rivers and Couples Resorts, however the views expressed in this post are my own.

Related Posts

Couples Tower Isle Review, Ocho Rios, Jamaica

Couples Sans Souci Jamaica All Inclusive Resort Review

Beaches, Haute Cuisine and Creole Delights in Sunny St. Martin

Best Luxury Hotels in St. Lucia

Breezy Beaches and Delightful Nights: A Romantic Guide to Key West

 

Need Award Booking Help? Our fee is as low as $75 per ticket if you book your hotel through us.

If you enjoyed this, join 100,000+ readers: please follow TravelSort on Twitter or  like us on Facebook to be alerted to new posts. 

Become a TravelSort Client and Book Your Hotel with Virtuoso or Four Seasons Preferred VIP Amenities!

  • |
  • Print
    print |
Related Articles
Comments
Leave a Comment
Comment
Facebook-logo
Get Free Email Blog Updates
Popular Articles
Square_review-restaurant_gordon_ramsay-68_royal_hospital_road
8/9/2016
  This Review of Restaurant Gordon Ramsay is from our recent visit to London. I was excited to try Gordon Ramsay's eponymous 3 Michelin star restaurant, having enjoyed lunch at Petrus, a 1 Michelin star Gordon Ramsay restaurant, a few years ago....
Square_activate_chase_freedom_5x_for_restaurants_and_wholesale_clubs_for_q3_2016
6/14/2016
  Starting June 15, activate Chase Freedom 5X for Restaurants and Wholesale Clubs for July - September 2016 spend. Restaurants, along with grocery stores, are my two favorite 5X categories. What other card, after all, gives you 5X points on all...
Square_pur_paris_restaurant_review-park_hyatt_paris-banquette_seating
6/28/2016
  This Pur' Paris Restaurant Review at the Park Hyatt Paris is part of a trip report including luxury hotel stays and Michelin star dining in Paris and London.  For the previous posts, please see: Review: Lufthansa First Class Lounge...
Square_review-the_clam_restaurant-nyc
6/11/2016
The Clam is one of the best NYC restaurants we've reviewed, although since it's not in our neighborhood it's been months since we were last there. We had a chance to revisit it last night, so here's our updated review...
Square_7_reasons_to_visit_costa_brava
6/17/2016
  Spain's Costa Brava (literally, "rugged coast") certainly enjoys a beautiful and dramatic landscape, but there's much more to it than meets the eye. Located northeast of Barcelona, the Costa Brava attracted Salvador Dali, Pablo Picasso, Joan Miro and other...
Square_review-hidden_paris_gourmet_walking_tour-leclair_de_genie-fraises_du_bois-caramel_beurre_sale
7/15/2016
  This Review of a Hidden Paris Gourmet Walking Tour is from our recent small group tour with our wonderfully charismatic guide, Eglantine. Hidden Paris also offers other small group tours as well as private tours, which I'll detail below....
Square_review-la_cuisine_de_philippe-paris_restaurant-25_rue_servandoni
7/5/2016
  La Cuisine de Philippe is a must on your next visit to Paris, if you enjoy souffles--it's a rare place that specializes in them. I've been meaning to go for years, but either the restaurant was closed or I...
Square_delta_amex-free_shake_shack_meals_in_nyc
6/8/2016
  Delta AMEX cardholders can enjoy a free NYC Shake Shack meal tomorrow and Friday. There was also free Shake Shack at the Madison Square Park location earlier today, 11-2pm, but that is now over. While Shake Shack tends to be...
Square_nobu_new_york_review-restaurant_and_sushi_bar
7/29/2016
  Our Nobu New York Review is from our recent NYC Restaurant Week lunch. Some might argue that it's not fair to judge a restaurant by its NYC Restaurant Week lunch menu. Personally, I think that if a restaurant isn't...
Square_can_a_hotel_restaurant_cancel_your_confirmed_reservation
7/8/2016
  Can a Restaurant Cancel a Confirmed Reservation? I discussed Can a Hotel Cancel Your Confirmed Reservation in a prior post, but this time the issue is with a restaurant reserved for a special occasion. My client opted to return...