Cyprus Mail
Entertainment Restaurant & Bar Reviews

Restaurant Review: The Powerhouse, Nicosia

By Alexander McCowan

A windy Wednesday night is not the best time to visit The Power House. Arriving shortly after 8 we are shown to a central table in the courtyard by Zenon, the ubiquitous waiter who appears to move on wheels. The folding chairs and tables are made of metal and remind me of summer days and bandstands in Bath. The setting, under the trees, with the spacious arrangements, subdued lighting, the Moulin Rouge bar with the busy attendant, are in complete contrast to the chaos in the surrounding roads that make visiting the restaurant a task requiring the skills of an orienteer. However, one advantage of this situation is that you can park anywhere – all yellow lines have vanished.

Our visit coincided with the launch of the new menu prepared by young Andreas – the master in the kitchen – recently returned from the States with many ideas for educating the palate of Nicosians.

Zenon presents us with two tasters from the cocktail list – with the imaginative title of ‘Karpousake’; contents include Sake, watermelon, lemon juice, pepper, mastiha and cucumber and mint syrup: you have to try it. For the concerned driver or recovering alcoholic they serve cocktails without alcohol: damned good idea.

The menu contains four starters, two salads, seven main courses and four sweets, which means less time for reading, more time for eating. The companion, who was becoming as concerned about the Beaufort scale as she was about warding off hunger, chose the poached sea bass and salmon with quinoa salad and I selected the pork herbal patties on a bed of fresh rocket drizzled with balsamic vinegar. Instead of the usual Fillet Mignon, the companion settled for the tagliatelle with grilled vegetables and I decided on the chicken stuffed with Halloumi. Madam called for a small bottle of Chilean Cabernet Sauvignon. Before the first course we were given four red hot home-baked rolls in a basket with herbal butter.

The fish was a revelation: it was arranged in tower form with salmon protruding from within, on a bed of quinoa that had been properly prepared, not just dropped into boiling water before serving. My patties, wrapped in their filo cases, were hot, crisp and just right. Both dishes were excellent and consumed quickly.

Main courses arrived and would have won a prize for presentation; my chicken was served in the form of three rolled breasts wrapped in prosciutto, enclosing a slice of Halloumi, and surrounded by a glistening array of grilled vegetables and a puree of aubergines. The tagliatelle was perfectly cooked and promised much. Both dishes were perfectly hot when served but given the force of the chill wind, cooled rapidly and became unappetizing. Great shame. Be sure to check the weather forecast.

The sweets were delicious. I had the panna cotta, and madam, the lemon meringue tart. Andreas has a gift for confectionery; following the meal we were given two of his macaroons, they were of the quality that makes you want to eat a dozen.

Once the municipality gets its act together, this place will thrive: the food and service is first rate, but they will need to make provision for the elements.
The wine list is well balanced and won’t distress the wallet. One can envisage this being a jolly venue for the young fashionables who are fed up with Grivas Dighenis.

SPECIALTY International cuisine with a Mediterranean slant.
WHERE Palias Elektrikis. Behind the site for new municipal building in the old city.
CONTACT 22-432559
PRICE Reasonable. Main courses from €8:50

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