Indian Summer is a slightly expensive restaurant in Colombo 7 with nice outdoor seating, and a wide variety of Indian food on the menu. Most of the dishes we tried lacked the strong punch of typical Indian spices though, so this might be a good choice if you want a toned down version of regular Indian food.
(Also as someone who's lived in India, I found the restaurant's choice of name a little comical – Indian summers are actually quite horrible.)
We loved the seating space they have just outside the restaurant – comfy cushions in cane furniture, a floor of white rocks, and plants along the sides. The downside though is that you can't sit here in hot weather or if it's a bad traffic day on Horton Place.
The inside is still cosy, with a sort of fine dining vibe if you visit in the evenings. The place has an elaborate ceiling and some interesting corners, like the wall of embossed cut-out birds near the sink area.
Food & Service
The menu is a book that goes on forever (digital menus like at Noodles would do restaurants a world of good). We did appreciate the first page though – where they explained the spices that actually make Indian food what it is, with their names in Hindi and their health benefits. Service was alright – we got our meals on time.
Our chicken biriyani (Rs. 950) and Gosht Ki Kazi (mutton curry) – a chef's special (Rs. 1100), were actually rather bland. The portion of the biriyani was great, enough for two, and the mutton was tender and came in a good thick gravy – but that hit of aromatic spices we're used to from great Indian food was missing (and the mutton could have used more salt). So unfortunately, these didn't impress.
If you find yourself at this restaurant though, definitely go for the Indian-Chinese plate of chicken lollipops (Rs. 850). We got it as a starter, a plate for two, and it featured lovely spicy chunks of crisp, deep fried chicken wings. This was pretty much the highlight of our lunch.
Also, these guys have some interesting-sounding seafood fusion that we didn't get to try out, like fish tikka and tandoor shrimps.
Indian Summer didn't deliver with their biriyani or mutton, but our chicken starter was fantastic so there's hope – also we haven't tried their seafood. The restaurant has a cosy ambience, albeit the cost (almost Rs. 5000 for two of us) didn't really feel worth the experience.