all posts by date  Ammochostos (Famagusta)  eat  traditional tavernas Famagusta  ★ ★ food  ★ ★ ★ ambiance  ★★ service

Napa Tavern

Demokratias 15, 23721280, Ayia Napa, AMMOCHOSTOS (FAMAGUSTA)
Mon-Sun 16:00-23:30
Food: [rating:2.5] 2.5/5
Service: [rating:2.5] 2.5/5
Ambiance: [rating:3] 3/5
Controversial and volatile is a good description for Napa Tavern I would say. Controversial because, if you ask 10 people what they think of it I bet you wouldn’t find two people with a similar opinion. Volatile because, even I don’t agree with my opinion of last year, mainly due to an instability of quality and service.
Napa Tavern Ayia NapaIn order to be fair, I have to go back in time a bit. As a child I remember Napa Tavern to be THE place to be. It was one of the few decent and proper tavernas with very good food…until it became a bit too “for-the-masses”, making us shift elsewhere. That was, of course, until last year when I returned (again and again) after an invitation from proud Cypriot friends. Not only was I pleasantly surprised by the food quality and service, but I felt that I had missed out during all these years I had stayed away. Now, a year later, I am sad to say that my dinner last Saturday reminded me exactly why I had stayed away in the first place.
Last Saturday’s dinner also made me realise something: food quality and service at Napa Tavern is a clear function of how busy the restaurant is. Even the waiters themselves admitted it. If you go on a quiet Friday you might have a great meal with a lot of “meze” dishes, whereas if you go on a Saturday you might get raw pork kebab, raw fries and overcooked macaroni with the slowest service possible.
The actual “meze” selection is quite good as it includes the usual suspects as starters (a very good salad, dips and olives) as well as a selection of “cooked” dishes and meat on the grill. Highlights were the fried meatballs, although there was only a small meatball per person, the tasty stuffed vineleaves (that we actually had to ask for as they had forgotten to serve them to us), and the lamb “tavas” (slow cooked lamb with potatoes and vegetables), which was very tender and flavoursome. The fried red mullet, according to the proud Cypriot friend who was craving fish, was fresh and had just been fried. The low points were the raw pork kebab that Napa Tavern Ayia Napamade everyone worried regarding the quality of our meal, the raw fried potatoes and the surprisingly overcooked, soft and mushy macaroni with halloumi cheese which was served at room temperature.
The “meze” was averagely priced at slightly less than 20€ each, with a 20€ Greek Moschofilero (our third choice since the two Cypriot wine bottles that we first asked for had run out). The very friendly and kind waiters apologised for the slow service and blamed it on the large groups of people that were at the restaurant. My question is, being a very popular tavern with all these years of experience, how could you not manage to hold your restaurant in place, especially when you knew that it would be packed with large group reservations?
Due my past experience I probably would return on a Friday night or on a weekday, but one thing is certain: I would never return again on a Saturday!

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