Eight years ago, a friend alerted me to a “Lebanese” restaurant at Pissouri Bay. Mary and I duly went along to the and enjoyed dishes that were not just Lebanese but had a distinctly further east touch to them. We met Sam Kazzaz the chef-proprietor, thereby starting an enduring friendship. After I had written a favourable review in the British Forces newspaper, Sam called me to say that although already busy with business from people at the Bases, the write-up had lots more queuing down the street.
He very gently added that if I were to write about him in the future would I be so kind as to spell his name correctly, which was and NOT a not-quite-rude Arabic colloquialism. His manner demonstrated Sam’s considerable generosity, further shown since because it has been a matter of serious threats to make Sam accept payment for a meal. I must add that he is an enormous contributor to several charities, which he is totally modest about.
For some years now Sam has had a settled team of kitchen and front-of-house people and doesn’t rattle the pans himself any more, but closely watches every plate that comes out of the kitchen (and takes a good look at them when they go back as well).
The Limanaki cuisine has evolved slowly and steadily to one that could be described as “Slightly Eastern International”. There are tinges of cumin, cardamom, hints of curry (Limanaki’s own) and to pick a favourite, the spicy lamb is very special indeed. Sam likes his food to look good, too as my pictures show.
A great friend and connoisseur of foods middle and far eastern is Francis Geldart, one of Sam’s “regulars”, who lap-topped this review to me.
“There are plenty of good places to eat scattered around the villages to the west of Limassol. Limanaki at Pissouri Bay has, however, been by far our favourite over the last eight years. When it comes to restaurants, Sam Kazzaz understands the full meaning of the word “quality”: