Hadjiloizi Michailidi 6, behind the old market, 97839617, LEMESOS (LIMASSOL)
Mon-Sat 12:00-16:00, Sun-Sat 19:00-24:00 (closed for lunch in August)
Food: [rating:3.5] 3.5/5
Service: [rating:3] 3/5
Ambiance: [rating:4] 4/5
I love it when a restaurant is able to recreate itself from daytime to nightime. This means transforms into a different thing at night, hence adding to the number of available options in a small city like Limassol. From a “magirio” (lunch place for home-cooked meals), into a Greek/Cypriot taverna is not really a “recreation” of oneself but Yiagkini-by-night surely looks like a different restaurant.
I have argued many times against trend followers and on behalf of trend setters. I am happy to say that Yiagkini is a trend setter. A year and a half ago when they opened the old house doors where it is situated, it was simply a cute “magirio” with a picturesque back yard, interesting antique ornaments and colourful chairs. Now it is more of a “hang-out’ place for old city fans and one of the best value for money “taverns”, (if I can call it that way).
The menu is short but complete, written by hand on a small piece of paper. Apart from the traditional salad and dips, the selection changes every night keeping the “surprise” element. What I really liked is the fact that, apart from the “halloumi” cheese and the Cypriot sausage, the dishes were mostly Greek with a twist rather than the standard Cypriot pork kebab and grilled lamb chops. The fact that our chicken a-la-Yiagkini wrapped in soft cheese layer with what looked like bechamel cream and tomato was tender and tasty in a not-at-all boring way compared to the usual chicken dishes is the main reason why the “Greek twist” was a plus for Yiagkini. The pork fillets with a mushroom sauce and mashed potatoes were surprisingly good, being extra soft with a rich but not overwhelming flavour (thankfully without any sign of cream sauce). The hand-cut and freshly fried fries were extra savoury and extra crispy were fantastic, a very bad thing for any girl’s diet. In fact they were close to comparing with The Old Neighbourhood’s fries (the best one’s in town) that remind me of my childhood. Finally the fried aubergine-croquettes (“melitzanokeftedes”), that we chose out of fried zucchini croquettes, and fried tomato-croquettes were quite good, even though not so crispy the taste was simple and balanced (especially with a touch of village-style Greek yogurt).
The big surprise of the night however was the bill. All of the above together with a came to 20€ for two people (yes, in total!). That makes it 10€ per person, less than the plain white beans and salad I had for lunch. Our drinks (a large beer and water) were on the house. Even though it came as a surprise, when one looks at the menu, and sees that all main dishes are at 4€, and most starters and the fries are at 2€ it kind of makes sense (and I don’t mean 4€ for a chicken bite, but a good-sized portion). In fact we even had leftovers. Who ever is complaining about high prices, low quality and boring menus should visit Yiagkini at night.
Click here for the original review of Yiagkini