This restaurant was recommended to us by a lovely Dutch couple at our hotel who sadly left too early and who are regular visitors to Paphos and knew the owner and his family. It was because of their recommendation my wife and I decided to visit the restaurant. It is fair to say that at some point during a stay in Cyprus you have to try the Kleftico as everyone you meet will ask, and Greka's Klefitco came highly recommended.
The owner of the restaurant Panicos came across as a nice and larger than life gentleman who took our order for Kleftico and a marinated pork dish along with my order for a Brandy Sour. As I took the first sip of my drink I noticed a dark spot on the side of the glass and on closer inspection inside the glass were a couple of ants floating around. I bought it Panicos' attention and he went to get me another and then came back and told me the bitters had the ant problem and so I couldn't have the same drink, so I went for a vodka and orange juice. When this arrived the tumbler was full of orange juice so it was hard to taste the vodka. After the ant incident I chose to keep quiet.
The restaurant wasn't busy when we visited and so it didn't take long for our food to arrive and whilst my wife's Kleftico was tender and fell off the bone, it was also not hot and there was a thin layer of congealed fat maybe as a result of it not being thoroughly warmed. The fact my wife was ill that evening made us think that maybe it had been cooked earlier and served luke warm rather than blasted with more intense heat. My marinaded pork on the other hand was good and we did both think the potato as it was one big roastie was good.
As we ate and tried to speak to one another the combination of the music playing in the restaurant and the cacophony of deafening and annoying music from the ridiculous Kings Tavern across the road made it impossible. I did complain to Panicos as I initially thought it was the restaurants music and when he turned his down I realised it was the restaurant across the road with their open front and huge speakers that were torturing us - shame on the Kings Tavern - maybe some of the other restaurants should tell them to turn it down?
Already enduring a poor food and atmosphere Panicos then then sat on an adjacent table and started to chain smoke. Whilst I accept he is the owner and it is his place I would have thought that keeping the customers happy would have been more important to him than his need for nicotine. Unlike the UK and parts of the US where smoking happens outside restaurants in Cyprus this is not the case although a couple of restaurants like the excellent Tea for Two up the road used signs to encourage smoking at the tables outside. The fact that we were not having a great experience anyway and thinking that the owner should know better I didn't broach the issue with Panicos who looks like he is not new to the restaurant business. But it is obvious if your diners are not smoking and nowadays fewer people do smoke then don't smoke near them as it is a sure fire way of spoiling their meal - I would rather taste my food than someone's second hand smoke
All in all I am sorry to say to our Dutch friends Piasta Greka didn't live up to the hype.
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