By Nan Mackenzie
Frederico Fellini once said that it’s easier to be faithful to a restaurant than it is to a woman. I don’t all together agree with him; yes we might find that one perfect eatery, will congratulate ourselves on finding such a gem of a place, we visit regularly, family and friends will join us, we make friends with the owner, then, after a time the lure of another new restaurant tempts us and we forget about our once favourite eatery. We have all at some time or another been guilty of indulging in ‘restaurant affairs’ sometimes pretending loyalty to one but secretly sneaking off to try pastures or pastas new.
The bonus however of being a serial foodie adulterer is in the sure and certain knowledge that old loves will always welcome you back, will generously ignore past indiscretions, exactly what happened when I walked back into the Colosseum Restaurant. I first ate here 13 years ago when Nicos Charalambous launched his Italian-themed eatery and for several years I was a solid and regular fan of his cooking, until my taste buds started to stray.
Nicos, being the gentleman that he is, didn’t even raise an eyebrow nor did he demand an explanation for my extended absence but warmly welcomed me back, poured a glass of wine, then disappeared, only to return with a plate of his perfectly marinated beef Carpaccio nestling on a bed of crisp rocket, topped with slivers of glistening fresh parmesan. He had remembered my favourite starter. It was game on from then, with a follow up dish of perfectly cooked prawns followed by a glorious pepper steak so tender one could cut it with a butter knife.
I was back, once again relishing the marvellous veranda where diners can sit high above street level and feel they are safe in a haven of white linen, where comfort food leaning to the very best of Brassiere is served with still clear markers that there is also a serious kitchen at work here.
Nicos also boasts a serious Cava where champagnes lay waiting, and Italian, French, Australian and about every other country that has a reputation for quality wines also lie for those whose love of food is equal to the seductive lure of the grape.
Homemade pasta has always been excellent here with 14 different varieties to choose from, including Nicos’ very proper lasagne, or his now infamous ravioli which he stuffs with porcini mushrooms, sun dried tomatoes and fresh cream, or the decidedly different and delicious taste of Fagotti stuffed with ricotta and black truffle then cooked with fresh cream and gorgonzola cheese and port wine. The a la carte menu offers Irish steaks, fish, a variety of seafood dishes, chicken, pork and lamb but for those on a budget I can heartily recommend the Value Meal. This will delight both the appetite and the wallet as its priced at a mere €12.99 and offers a choice of seven starters, including Lasagne and Calamari, Fritto, then you choose from seven main dishes with lamb shanks, a rib eye steak, or stuffed chicken, then to finish a selection of four puddings plus a complimentary glass of wine. Few if any establishments can come close to matching this value menu not just on price but on the sheer quality of the ingredients, not forgetting the very comfortable setting, plus, on special entertainment nights you can also enjoy free live entertainment.
Thank you Nicos for having me back again, I will try not to have any more one night stands… well … maybe… just the odd one here or there?
SPECIALTY Quality Italian /Mediterranean dishes.
WHERE Colosseum, Kato Paphos, opposite the Veronica Hotel
PRICE €12.99 for the three course value meal
CONTACT 26 962415 or 99 528964 www.colosseumristorante.com
WHEN Monday to Saturday