Tuesday, May 21, 2024

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Two Downtown and North Naples Restaurants Set to Close

There have been two recent restaurant closures of note in Collier County, which featured international cuisines.

Old Naples

Afsona, the beautiful restaurant with sky blue decor owned by chef Mamlakat Tadjieva at 300 Ninth Street across from NCH Baker Hospital, recently closed after nearly three years of serving Uzbek cuisine.

A previous JLB critic noted, “As I said before, I do not like Afsona. I find it irresistible.”

Afsona, a restaurant in Naples that serves Uzbek cuisine, is decorated with flowers and photos of Uzbekistan, photographed on Thursday, February 18, 2021.

The restaurant’s opening night was Dec. 24, 2020. The space was previously Maria D’anna Cafe.

North Naples

Though Google and its website say the closure is temporary, several members of our city’s Argentine ex-pat community are telling me that Manuela and Pablo Basualdo’s Mila Bistro is just not reopening, not less than in its current form. It has not been open any of the five times I’ve driven by prior to now two months.

Mila's Bistro offers many empanada selections, all with different shapes.

The couple, who hail from Buenos Aires, opened their vibrant cafe in late April 2022 at 2464 Vanderbilt Beach Road, serving Argentine sandwiches, burgers, wine, and five varieties of Milanesas.

The creative, house-made empanadas I ate on early visits were the actual deal. My favorite was the bacon, plum, and mozzarella. Subsequent visits for carryout proved just a little tricky as my Spanish is not muy bueno.

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