Alkaiou 23, Engomi, 22255111, LEFKOSIA (NICOSIA)
Mon-Sun 19:00-2:00, Sun 11:00-16:00
Food: [rating:3.5] 3.5/5
Service: [rating:4] 4/5
Ambiance: [rating:3.5] 3.5/5
Rumour has it that the revamped Occhio has let go of some things but has also kept a few. The brand new STATE, the new arrival of the Occhio Hospitality Group is a lively and modern space with an Americanised, buzzing party look which you can visit any day of the week for dinner, drinks, after-dinner partying, or for Sunday brunches. Being 5 months pregnant (yes again) I only had the chance to try it for brunch so far.
I like that the place is not another “trend follower” which is obvious from the space itself. It is located neither in the old city nor in the very centre but in a modern building in Engomi. Furthermore, the décor is neither rustic nor vintage but seems to follow a “ganster 70s meet the 21st century” concept. We are talking about camel leather seats with high ceilings, two island bars and windows across the entire space. I really liked the fact that entering STATE is an experience itself since you have to walk around the building, up the stairs and through a corridor to get to the entrance. It is only after you have gone past the wooden laser cut sign that you can actually see the inside space. The music that is constantly on is loud in a good way, creating a lively buzz regardless of the amount of people inside the restaurant, but which thankfully is not too loud
The brunch menu consists of a continental breakfast served on a buffet and an a-la-carte option. The buffet includes a few types of bread, croissants, muffins and cakes with a cheese selection, jams and spreads –all for merely 6.50€ with coffee and/or tea, something which I found extremely good value-for-money, especially considering the quality. I appreciated the fact that the croissants were fresh and that the cheese selection was fairly large for such an occasion. The only thing that bothered me was the small size of the plates that made me go back a few times!
From the a-la-carte menu I had to try the Eggs Benedict with fried bacon and spinach. I liked the crispy bread the eggs were served on and I also liked the fact that the eggs were as runny as they were supposed to be. The two large slices of bacon were quite crispy. We also shared the Brunch Salad (served with a boiled egg, bacon, mushrooms and green leaves). This was refreshing and a good dish to share if you are hungry. Finally, Mr Proud Cypriot’s steak with a fried egg on top was a good addition to the menu and a great option if you can’t decide between having lunch or brunch. It was served medium rare and included fried mushrooms and potatoes.
Although there were a number of other tempting options on the menu such as American pancakes with strawberries, an omelet and a Eggs Benedict with smoked salmon (Eggs Royal), after 3 dishes and a continental breakfast across 2 people we were too full to try anything else.
The management also let us know that Bloody Marys and Mimosas will be on offer very soon. The whole experience, however was something different to the norm – it reminded me of an American style bistro/brunch place and an easy solution to those boring Sunday mornings.