House Vandervort.

House Vandervort is probably the prettiest restaurant in Dehiwala area. A grand colonial house flipped into a restaurant, this one serves Asian fusion (mainly), cafe food, and also booze under the same roof. It's a place that caters to various encounters – family celebrations, friends night out, and not too shabby for a casual date either. 

Food 

On the day we visited they had a 25% off deal on all food, so the actual pricing is a bit higher than what you see in this review. However, from what we gathered, most of their dishes are priced around Rs. 600 – Rs. 800 range. As for drinks, they've got a separate menu featuring alcohol and non-alcoholic drinks. 

We started off with a bowl of Chicken Corn Soup (Rs. 409). Creamy in texture, but not overwhelmingly so, this one arrived steaming hot, and was ladened with bits of sweet corn, chicken and egg. Adding a teensy bit of Lankan vibe to it, the soup also carried a good amount of carrots in it, while the sprinkle of pepper helped to spike up the flavours. 
 
All in all, this is a simple, well-executed dish that would be ideal to start off your meal with. 

We liked the presentation of the Nasi goreng (Rs. 559). A mountain of rice with copious amounts of chicken and seafood bits hidden underneath, it also featured a fried egg on top, and was decorated with colourful mal papadum
 
The rice was well seasoned with spices, but we wish if they could have gone easy on the oiliness. It's not a friend to someone with gastritis, and unfortunately, I am one. 
 
Anyway, with everything that it has to offer, two can easily share this Nasi goreng. 

The Seafood Fried Rice (Rs. 593) didn't disappoint. Every bite of it was loaded with seafood-y goodness. The fluffy, well-cooked basmati rice was rich with pieces of carrots, spring onions and of course, seafood – prawns, cuttlefish and cubes of white fish. We appreciate the fact that they had kept the seasoning to a minimum as the amount of seafood made up for it. 

We were excited for the Batter Fried Calamari (Rs. 593) but it fell short of impressing us. The calamari rings were encased in a thin, crispy, golden-fried batter, which we liked, but the fish itself was a bit overcooked. They weren't chewy at all, which is not something that one would enjoy in a dish like this. 

Tender to the point that it falls apart so easily in your mouth, the Chicken Bistake (Rs. 630) landed on the spicy side. Oozing out with a nice peppery flavour, it had lots and lots of veggies in it. A little tang from tomato, while the green chillies and capsicum contributing to the spiciness, and the onion works its magic, everything was bound very nicely to succulent pieces of chicken. 

I think they offered this with a couple of lightly toasted bread as they forgot to serve it on the side of the soup.

Ambience & Service

Boasting with the imprints of colonial architecture, the ambience here is quite calm and collected. It's like they've set it to a scene from the said era, and the time has frozen since. The walls decorated with pictures of the same period, add more character to it, while enhancing the homely vibe. 

Our food didn't take long to arrive, and the staff was happy to make recommendations on what to order.

Conclusion

Dehiwala needs more family-friendly, indoor dining spots, and House Vandevort provides it. The ambience here is a highlight and coupled with good food, you're guaranteed to have a fine experience. Sure, some of the dishes have the potential to improve, but given that their portions are quite large (even though they're labelled as single servings), you'd get your money's worth. 

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