Living in Gozo with local Joseph Mercieca

Gozo’s quiet life is essential for a busy restaurant owner

Gozo’s tranquil way of life is one of the reasons it’s a sought-after place to live, work, and study. For Joseph Mercieca, owner and director of Country Terrace, a restaurant that overlooks the Mgarr Harbour, a relaxed lifestyle is crucial to offset the busy times at his restaurant. Though, it was the peaceful location of his restaurant that attracted him to it in the first place.

Meet Joseph Mercieca

For almost two decades, Joseph has enjoyed the view from his restaurant Country Terrace. He says the serene sight view of boats slowly coming in and out of Mgarr Harbour is soul-soothing.

“My favourite thing [about working at Country Terrace is the fantastic terrace,” Joseph says. “You have this incredible view. You’ve got ferries going in and out. You can see Comino. You can see Malta. It’s the one place in Gozo where you can see all three together – and it never gets old.”

Students are regular visitors to Country Terrace, as it’s a perfect place to unwind after a long day of studying, says Joseph, adding that a 50% discount through the University is another draw.

Built on tradition

Country Terrace has a rich history that can be traced back all the way to the 16th century, when it was run by a local farmer who baked bread for people on the island. It was bought in the 1970s by a man named Zeppu and then sold to Joseph in 2005. The restaurant’s menu is another crucial aspect, offering a range of traditional Maltese dishes, such as arabali mimli (stuffed courgettes), rabbit, baked macaroni, and raw fish, like lampuki tata.

“The menu changes with the seasons and features wines to match each dish.”

Keep calm and carry on

When he’s not working, Joseph loves to find quiet and peaceful spots in Gozo, such as its quiet beaches, where he can relax and recharge. He also enjoys boating and fishing, exploring the historic Cittadella, and visiting the Ġgantija Temples.

“My favourite places in Gozo are beaches, where you can sit back, relax and enjoy life,” he says. “If you like to rent a boat, you can go fishing. The Cittadella is incredible – and there is a thriving music scene. Of course, you can also visit us at Country Terrace any time.”

For Joseph, enjoying life at a slower pace is what makes Gozo an incredible place to live.

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