It is amazing the rate at which new bars pop up in Nicosia. Take a long weekend away and on your return you’ll find one venue has closed down and a new bar opened in its place.
In May 2016 Banco Kitchen Bar opened up on the busy corner of Stasandrou and Mboumboulinas. Like other popular bars, Banco’s views encapsulate passing traffic. It also follows the modern trend of blurring the distinction between a restaurant and a bar. This means a kitchen bar where good food meets great cocktails and smashing hospitality.
The loud music definitely feeds into the drinking vibe and the fanciful long bar spreading across the rear of the venue, is a nice spot to sit and enjoy a beverage while appreciating the plant display above the bar.
Banco is an attractive space; it’s much nicer once you step in than what one may experience by simply driving past it. With an urban chic, almost eco feel to it, it impresses with living greenery decorating both the inside and outside areas and trees growing comfortably inside the bar too. Its wooden tables, and leather looking chairs give it a grounded feel and the large glass sliding doors separate the inside to outside space effortlessly.
Open seven days a week, Wednesday nights employ the talents of a saxophonist, whereas Friday and Saturday nights sport DJs usually mixing Tropical House on Fridays and Funk on Saturdays.
I visited the bar at 6pm on Wednesday, and although it was empty was already fully booked for the evening. It approximately 100 during winter and 150 in summer when tables and chairs sprawl outside onto the pavements.
There are 15 signature cocktails and Banco, is currently in the process of switching to a winter cocktail menu which will see many of the drinks using Whisky, Bourbon and Gin as their base. I opted for a Jack the Ripper, one of their most popular cocktails and which will continue into the winter season’s menu too. A real bitter sweet drink with notes of homemade velvety vanilla syrup running through it, working well with the Jack Daniels base and Aperol, and fresh lime to give a well needed kick. It’s a delicious drink that seamlessly transits between summer and winter and at €8.50 it’s reasonably priced. If not up for a cocktail, there are between 15 and 17 different types of red wines, 12 whites, and couple of different rose, Champagnes, sparkling wines and beers.
It’s advised that tables are reserved for eating or for large groups of drinkers on popular nights, else, its first come first seated at the bar area.
Banco Kitchen Bar
Where: Stasandrou and Mboumboulinas, Nicosia
Contact: Tel: 22 760100, facebook.com/bancokitchenbar/
When: Daily 6pm-2am
Price: cocktails €7-8.50, wines €19.90