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Restaurant review: Syrian Restaurant, Limassol

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By Andrea Kouyali

In the land of overpriced everything, in the heart of Limassol’s tourist area lies the Syrian Restaurant. Around for years, it is home to the best of the Middle East: generous portions, rich flavours and insanely affordable prices.

It’s impossible to leave the restaurant without feeling absolutely stuffed and having leftovers to take home is a ritual. Like I said, best of the Middle East. It is so popular with locals and visitors that come the weekend, you’ll be hard-pressed to find a parking spot. As it is jam-packed a reservation is highly recommended.

And it is full for a reason: the food is absolutely divine. Syrian cuisine has a lot of similarities with traditional Cypriot food but the differences are pronounced enough to be worth a visit. The meats were soft and tender, with a delicious mix of herbs and spices where if you think about it long enough, you can almost taste it long after you’ve consumed it.

We went on a rainy day and as such walked swiftly passed an exterior adorned with large trees, plants and the dark wooden tables with cushioned chairs that have a velvety feel when you sink in. The interior sticks to the Middle Eastern aesthetic with patterned décor on the walls but it is not overbearing.

It’s a huge place but we tucked ourselves into our table and the food once the dishes arrived.

Going traditional, we ordered shish tawouk (chicken) and kabab kafta (lamb). Of course, when at the Syrian Restaurant you can’t skip the Fattoush salad or a tabbouleh. Whoever said salads were boring clearly hasn’t tried the Middle Easter take.

First up though was Fatayer Bil Jobn. These are cheese pies prepared with homemade baklava sheets and the crunchiness of the exterior coupled with the warm, soft and salty interior made for a divine opener for what was going to follow.

rest2The cold appetisers were served with a generous portion of pitta bread. We went for the timeless classic hummus (made from chickpeas, tahini and lemon juice); shawandar (a pink-coloured dip made with beetroots, tahini and yoghurt); and mouhamarah with a mild and light spice made from red peppers, walnuts and pomegranate juice.

The hummus also went well with the meat, while the shawandar had a more refreshing taste. Mouhamarah introduced deeper and richer flavours that came with a lot of depth.

But the biggest surprise of the evening was the bill, where three of us paid €46 for delicious food we couldn’t finish, including wine and water!

The restaurant also has rich mezes that are available for two or more people. It’s also worth considering checking out the menu beforehand as there are some exquisite-looking dishes that must be ordered in advance. After all that, the dessert menu is not surprisingly rather brief, mahelapi, Syrian pastries or ice cream. We skipped.

 

VITAL STATISTICS

SPECIALTY Syrian Food

WHERE   Iliados 3, Germasogeia, 4046, Limassol

WHEN  Every day 12-10:30pm

HOW MUCH €2.50 – €4 for appetisers; €7.50 -10 for mains; €2.50 for dessert

CONTACT 25 328838

 

 

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