January can be a strange month in Paphos for eating out. Many places are quite rightly closed for a well-deserved break, but what is annoying is when this information is not conveyed to potential diners via social media. It is the work of minutes to update opening hours, but last week Momo Asian Kitchen Bar was my third attempt at eating out. The two restaurants before did not mention they were closed, and having driven to the venue and paid for parking, it just leaves a nasty taste. Yes, I should have phoned to check, but I will not return to either to try again.
Momo, Japanese for peach, is in the Old Town of Paphos, which is fast becoming an eating-out mecca. However, getting into Momo is not without problems, and I highly recommend that the owners make it more apparent from the outside. It is positioned on the first floor, but the main entrance is difficult to find at ground level. There is an entrance with a lift, but sadly for us, we were directed to use the back fire escape staircase, which is not recommended!
Upon entering the actual restaurant, you are transported to another world with a beautifully designed interior space. It has a very smart London vibe, which reflects the Asian cuisine on the menu. There is an expansive terrace with incredible views across Paphos down to the sea.
For Asian food lovers, the menu at Momo will be their dream, but not in a traditional sense. Momo offers a very modern and gourmet slant with all their dishes. It is clearly divided into sushi, hot and cold starters, soups and salads, and for the main event, there are also noodles and a unique selection of mains with a twist. This is not the place to find traditional sweet and sour type Chinese cuisine. Main courses include Lobster, Duck, Sea Bass and Tomahawk steaks.
We started the meal with traditional dim sum and selected the Prawn Gyoza. These were a visual delight with very delicate flavours. We also had Bao Buns which were available with a variety of fillings. We chose the Duck with Apple and Hoisin Sauce, a winning flavour pairing. Although they were a little cool, they were quickly polished off.
We then shared the Asian Chicken Breast with a side of egg-fried rice. A very generous chicken breast served with shitake mushrooms and asparagus topped with a spring roll with sweet chilli sauce on the side. This offered an excellent combination of flavours and contrasting textures. We also ordered an unusual Green Apple Celeriac Purée side, slightly piquant and moreish. The presentation of all the dishes was outstanding, on a beautiful array of bespoke ceramics.
The Chocolate Fondant was the finale, which took a while to arrive at the table, but they warned us it was cooked to order. The souffle was so good that the waiting time was quickly forgiven, and with vanilla ice cream on the side, this was a dessert that I would highly recommend. For those with a really sweet tooth, they also offer a Momo Grand Dessert, a combination of all the desserts on the menu.
The waiter who served us was very knowledgeable on every aspect of the menu and provided superb service throughout the meal, adding to the luxury dining experience. The luxe theme follows through to the drinks and wine list with some unusual offerings, including Japanese whisky and vodka. We selected two glasses of Methy from the local Vasilikon Winery.
The restaurant seems rather famous for its cocktails, and during the warmer months, the terrace would be the perfect location to enjoy one.
WHERE Momo Asian Kitchen Bar, Petraki Miltiadous, Paphos
WHEN, Wednesday to Monday: 12pm to 12am. Tuesday Closed
CONTACT 26 352060
HOW MUCH Sushi from €6, Salads from €16, Starters from €5, Noodles from €14, Main dishes from €19 and Desserts from €9