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“Great food, shame about the service”
Review of Ta Chalkina

Ta Chalkina
Ranked #38 of 429 Restaurants in Chania Town
Certificate of Excellence
Cuisines: Greek
Dining options: After-hours, Reservations
Restaurant details
Dining options: After-hours, Reservations
Colchester, United Kingdom
Level 2 Contributor
4 reviews
common_n_restaurant_reviews_1bd8 2 helpful votes
“Great food, shame about the service”
Reviewed 20 August 2014

A waterside tavern that offers many seats outside with a myriad of waiters to seat and look after you. They serve genuine Cretan cuisine. The thing to note on all “genuine Cretan cuisine” is that when it’s ready is when you get it, sometimes quickly sometimes not. So you may order something that you believe is a starter only to find that the starter arrives with your perception of the main meal. Once you overcome that then the meal becomes a gratifying experience. The food we had was a dip, bread, large shrimps, chicken, potatoes all in various sauces and herbs which were second to none.
However getting to that point was a bit like an Agatha Christie novel – lots of twists and turns. Starting with the maître dee. There is none, grab a menu, grab a waiter, demand a table, sit down and that’s you for the evening. After a wait of slightly less than the Jurassic period someone will come and take your order using the latest app made by whoever. Don’t be fooled, just because you have ordered does not mean it will arrive. Indeed other people’s food arrived not once but three times! Drinks will come from one direction, part of the meal from another, expect waiters to change as quickly as an Italian changes gear when driving in Rome.
The food when it arrives is absolutely fantastic and the floor show put on by the staff is bordering on Basil Faulty on a good day. By this time the queue for seats was about 25 and the solution of combining tables cannot be faulted. That this was left up to the customers to do was fun to watch. Whilst that was going on the waiters were thundering too and fro at warp factor 6. We had an incredibly nice meal- by the way they do not do chips, this is genuine Cretan food at its best.
Then came the fun of getting the bill. It is normal for the waiters to delay the bill, it makes the restaurant look full and therefore the public will go to the restaurant believing it is great in all respects. However, in our case people were now queuing to get in and any one asking for the bill would be deserving speedy treatment. I expected we would be dealt with and ejected faster that fireball XL5. Not the case. Some three requests and 45 mins later the bill arrived. It was correct which I suspect was divine intervention and we paid- then came the wait for the change- another Jurassic period passed and eventually my partner was quite forthright heading off one of the waiters to find out where the change was. Whilst this was going on the parting gift of raki and sweet arrived. Too late to do any good I am afraid and when the change came I felt it pretty pointless leaving a tip as this would only reinforce their thinking that all was well here.
This is such a shame as the food is bril and if you can put up with the incompetence of the staff then please enjoy yourself. What is needed is a strong presence at the front of house to direct, manage and make it all happen. IF they can sort this out then all will be well and everyone will win, customers will be seated correctly, food sent to the right tables, payments made and gratuities left with happy customers being the end result. Tonight is our last night, we intend to go next door, eat a similar menu and just watch the antics of the staff, it is magnificent to watch, less so if you are involved. It is my 5th trip to Crete and I have travelled over all of Crete and this is the most interesting restaurant I have ever been involved with.

  • Visited August 2014
    • Value
    • Atmosphere
    • Service
    • Food
Helpful?
1 Thank jon505
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
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653 reviews from our community

Visitor rating
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Rating summary
    Food
    Service
    Value
    Atmosphere
Date | Rating
  • English first
  • French first
  • German first
  • Greek first
  • Hebrew first
  • Italian first
  • Norwegian first
  • Polish first
  • Portuguese first
  • Russian first
  • Spanish first
  • Swedish first
  • Turkish first
  • Any
English first
Level 3 Contributor
12 reviews
8 restaurant reviews
common_n_restaurant_reviews_1bd8 3 helpful votes
“The best traditional tavern”
Reviewed 17 August 2014

Good food with traditional folklore music of Crete. The location is great although restaurant is top busy so be prepared.

Visited August 2014
Helpful?
1 Thank George G
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Sevres, France
Level 6 Contributor
140 reviews
63 restaurant reviews
common_n_restaurant_reviews_1bd8 60 helpful votes
“Less than average”
Reviewed 13 August 2014

Despite awards and opinions, we did not appreciate.
Nice place facing ... the long queue of people waiting for tables.
Very slow service, too few (running) waiters, too many people, overcrowded terrace. Food maybe adequate but you get more for less money in many other places.
Forget-it.

  • Visited August 2014
    • Value
    • Atmosphere
    • Service
    • Food
Helpful?
Thank Philippe C
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Piraeus, Greece
Level 3 Contributor
19 reviews
15 restaurant reviews
common_n_restaurant_reviews_1bd8 7 helpful votes
“Amazing !”
Reviewed 11 August 2014

Great place, great food, great staff! The prices were also competitive!

We visited the restaurant in the first day of our 5 days stay in Chania and we visited them once again before we leave the island!

I wish I could eat there every day!

  • Visited July 2014
    • Value
    • Atmosphere
    • Service
    • Food
Helpful?
Thank Nicholas_k01
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Dunedin, New Zealand
Level 6 Contributor
99 reviews
51 restaurant reviews
common_n_restaurant_reviews_1bd8 35 helpful votes
“Enjoyable experience!”
Reviewed 11 August 2014

We went here twice while in Chania and really enjoyed the wide choice of reasonably priced mezze plates. There was a nice view of the harbour but we also liked the way we were away from most of the other restaurants. One night there was some great music being played by local musicians. It felt like a place that the locals were enjoying as well as visitors to Chania. They gave us a delicious complimentary dessert and some honey flavoured raki that was actually really nice at the end of our meal. A lovely place to eat!

Visited June 2014
Helpful?
Thank Bernee2013
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC

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