Even though we understand that the true definition of the French term À la carte is ‘from the card,’ and that the term is generally used to suggest that a restaurant offers an open menu where individual meal choices are detailed with a separate price for each item, we are cheating slightly and using this phrase to give you our take on fine dining in North Cyprus.
If you fancy a special meal or evening out whilst visiting or living in North Cyprus, there are a number of venues that cater for those times when you would like to spoil someone perhaps or host a birthday party or some other special occasion where a more quality and à la carte menu is required!
With the rise in the 5 star hotel based resorts on the island so there has been an increase in the number of really good places to eat. Some hotels are home to several world class restaurants, and you also have a really good choice of cuisines to try too with specialist chefs employed to ensure that standards are excellent.
We will give you an idea of what types of cuisine you can try, as well as the establishments which have really changed the way we dine out here in North Cyprus. The main area that you should be concerned with is Kyrenia, as this is where the majority of the 5 star hotels and à la carte restaurants are based these days because Kyrenia is the most popular holiday destination in North Cyprus. Obviously with these types of dining venues prices are slightly heavier on the pocket, but nevertheless, most are still quite affordable for a treat!
À La Carte Restaurants
Let’s start with the Korineum Golf Course and its Valley Restaurant. Based within the golf complex in Esentepe, the Valley Restaurant has a relaxed dining area with a fresh, modern design. It serves a variety of delicious starters and main courses, and there are some fine wines to try too. The waiting staff are actually very good here, and you can tell that they have been trained in top class dining etiquette. Prices are not too expensive either, so we think it’s perfect for an evening out if you want to dine at a classy venue! Tel +90 (0)392 6001500.
The Patina à la carte restaurant in Ozanköy is a little gem well worth trying. They really do put a lot of effort into their dishes, some of which you can see on their website www.patinacyprus.com. Patina is a great choice if you fancy something different – such as sea bass baked in banana leaf perhaps – with many other quite mouth-watering and innovative dishes available. Prices are not too bad either with a 3 course meal for two with wine costing around 120ytl (approx. £48). Tel : +90 (0)392 8245400.
Di Figaro in Karaoğlanoğlu is run by Salih Harmandagli – he also helps run the well known Sarastro Restautant in Covent Garden, London. Di Figaro is a popular venue for first class dining and is very tastefully decorated too. It serves a mix of Ottoman and Mediterranean food, all freshly prepared, and you can enjoy your meal on their spacious terrace overlooking the Med. Tel +90 (0)392 8224040.
If you fancy some good à la carte fish restaurants there are some good quality establishments that you can try. Lagoon, part of the Niazi Restaurant chain, is located next to the Dome Hotel in the centre of Kyrenia, a small but definitely cosy venue that is certainly a must for fish lovers. You can totally spoil yourself with fish mezes and main courses, and this place really does get busy any time of the week, but creates a great atmospheric evening to enjoy. Tel : +90 (0) 392 815 6555.
Other good fish restaurants include Missina in Karaoğlanoğlu, tel : +90 (0)392 8223833, Capitano in Alsancak, tel : +90 (0)392 8213025, and the longstanding Altinkaya 1, tel : +90 (0)392 8218341, all of which having great reputations for serving up good quality fish dishes in relaxed and modern venues.
There are some other really wonderful venues such as the well restored Efendi’s House restaurant located in the old Turkish Quarter of Kyrenia; for years now Efendi’s has been a favourite for those who want to dine in a unique atmosphere. The restaurant always comes up trumps with their select menus which offer something a little different but still at affordable prices. Tel +90 (0)392 8151149.
Some other favourites for diners who would like a first class evening and dining experience would be The Ambiance in Karaoğlanoğlu, tel +90 (0)392 822 2849 – here you find an extensive menu featuring meat, fish and vegetarian dishes, and the restaurant sits just on the edge of the coast with a wonderful outdoor dining terrace with views out over the Meditterannean.
Another quality venue is The Verandah also in Karaoğlanoğlu, tel +90 (0)392 8222053, this is an old favourite with a really warming atmosphere and rich décor, again offering a variety of dishes to suit most preferences. You might also like to try St.Tropez on the main road in Alsancak, it is well known as a stylish dining venue offering French cuisine, and it’s a good option if you want something a little more fancy. Tel +90 (0)392 8218324.
That nearly completes our run down of a la carte dining, but not totally as you can also check out our article on Hotel Dining which features some other establishments certainly well worth trying out. There are always more restaurants opening to try, so please explore them and let us know if you feel you have dined at a really great place that you believe comes under this category and we will add it for you!
Check out our other articles on family restaurants, international and European cuisine, traditional Turkish Cypriot cuisine, as well as take-aways and fast food. Additionally our article on hotel dining could also come within the à la carte dining scenario with some fine dining options!