There's no denying that Cypriot food is very comforting and tasty, thanks to the Greek, Turkish, and Italian influences that make Cypriot cuisines a blend of unique dishes. It also benefits from the climate of this well-known Mediterranean island, which allows for the use of some truly fresh and tasty ingredients
If you’re in the mood to grab a drink after work or simply buy groceries and have a home-cooked meal - here are some recommendations for you.
Must-try restaurants in Cyprus with traditional Cypriot cuisine that you will adore:
1. Kiniras Garden, Paphos
Kiniras garden is a family-owned restaurant that has been around for four generations - a beautiful restaurant that is filled with trees and statues resembling a green oasis. The owner of the restaurant is passionate about preserving the traditional cuisine with recipes that have been passed down from his grandmother, another aspect that stands out when you’re dining here is the freshness of the ingredients since the produce comes from their 60-hectare garden.
We recommend trying Kleftiko, a traditional dish 'Ofton Kleftiko' is made with lamb leg meat. Olive oil, lemon, garlic, and onion are used to marinade it.
2. Pezema Tavern, Argos
The short menu features traditional Cypriot specialties such as Keftedes (Greek Meatballs) and Souvlakia which usually consist of sliced meat and vegetables, typically eaten when it’s piping hot. The chef also uses seasonal produce to ensure the quality of each dish.
3. Two Friends, Pissouri Bay & Village
Two Friends takes pride in its home-cooked meals. The cheese ravioli, packed with halloumi cheese and mint, and the tahini dip, made with freshly ground sesame seeds, garlic, and olive oil, are both cooked from scratch. It's just outside the hamlet on the main road to the beach, with panoramic views of the sea.
4. To Pantopoleio Kali Orexi, Nicosia
To Pantopoleio Kali Orexi has become one of Nicosia's hottest dining spots because of its eccentric décor and inventive menu of classic Cypriot meals. Try the Psefdokeftedes, which are meatballs with feta cheese and oregano added to enhance the flavor.
This is a must-try, followed by local tenderloin pork marinated in aged whiskey and served with pita bread. Finish with the restaurant's signature Trigona Panoramatos, which are gorgeously arranged phyllo cones brimming with fresh cream.
5. Meraki Market Cafe, Paphos
Expect a beautiful cottage-chic setting and a great pairing of plant-based cuisine. There are gluten-free and dairy-free alternatives on the extensive vegan/vegetarian menu. One of the must-try menus is The Meraki Bad Boy Burger, cooked with black beans, mushrooms, and broccoli and topped with lettuce, toasted pumpkin, pomegranate seeds, and lemon dressing.
6. Stou Kir Yianni, Omodos
Do sit in the courtyard to enjoy its cool color scheme of limestone and local art on the walls, and go for the. Fattoush (Salad with a side of fried Pita) with pomegranate juice, kleftiko, vegetarian moussaka, kebabs, and karaolous me pnigouri (snails with bulgur wheat), a classic Cypriot meal, are also on the menu.
7. Bunch of Grapes Restaurant, Pissouri
Under the heavy cover of grapevines, figs, and mulberry trees, this calm, romantic spot in the town center provides delicious dishes like a crispy roast duck in apricot and brandy sauce and red mullet in garlic.
We recommend placing a reservation in advance to secure a table, Emel bus 70 connects Lemesos to Pissouri (€1.50) daily.