Gharitho Maria Seafood Restaurant

Written by on March 25, 2012 in I Eat Cyprus, I Eat...Out with 0 Comments

(No website found at time of publishing) – Nicosia, Cyprus

How I heard of this place: We drove by. Saw a packed house and decided to stop the car.

Type of cuisine: Seafood.

Ambiance: We were initially attracted by the people spilling out of the restaurant seating area, both indoors and outside, under the covered patio. The dark wooden tables creating a warm space amidst the white and blue, Mediterranean walls, window- and door-frames. Wrought iron chandeliers inside create an amber glow, muted through the natural light created by the bright sun, streaming through the open glass doors along the entire front half of the restaurant. At the back, a minimal bar is available to pour drinks that patrons can enjoy at tables with their families and friends. Our small wooden table in the corner, outside, on the tiled patio came decorated simply with a Mediterranean blue table runner, two white plates (turned upside down to keep them clean) and a knife and fork at each setting. We took our seats in the once-white plastic chairs and looked out, over the collection of rocks piled into a three-foot high metal basket creating a wall, and terra cotta tree planters. The main street just beyond, we were never at a loss for people-watching opportunities. The loud, bustling crowds talked, joked, laughed, reminisced and clanked their utensils throughout their long meals, unrushed, content.

What I ordered: We started with the Greek Salad for Two (€7), a bed of sliced tomatoes, sliced cucumbers, onion rounds and canned black olives topped with a block of feta cheese and a drizzle of olive oil. Olive oil drops on crostini on the side. We next enjoyed a large plate of Salmon Souvlaki (€18 each), cubed salmon on skewers with onion and red bell peppers, grilled and sprinkled with fresh, chopped parsley. Each plate of salmon souvlaki came with real fries (the kind my dad used to make), lightly fried and unsalted, as well as a side of yellow rice with diced carrots, peas and corn. Half of a lemon accompanied each plate.

What I loved: The salmon was delicious, moist and flaky. But I do have to say that there is something nostalgic and perfect about real, peeled in house and home-cooked fries.

Why I loved it: At the end of our two-hour dinner, as we came to expect with all of our meals, our server proclaimed, “From-a house comin’ sweetie now!” and ran back indoors to bring us three desserts, each: baklava rolls, milky custard dusted with cinnamon and an extra-sweet, goeey, soaked almond cake.

Cost: High (€11-€20 per entree)

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