If you're going through Embuldeniya junction, it's hard to miss Mr Gamarala. With a palm-thatched roof and mud walls that resemble a small village hut, it's a pleasing sight to behold. And what they've got inside is even more tasteful.
Mr Gamarala is all about rice & curry, the lifeline of Lankans. They've got around 20-30 curries in their spread, along with a few rice varieties. Each rice & curry plate can be accompanied by four curries, a protein of your pick, and comes with a couple of papadum and fried red chillies.
We ordered up a Dunthel Fish Rice (Rs. 380), and a Pork Red Rice (Rs. 350).
Duthel has a unique aroma to it, which we couldn't quite smell here, but the rice was well flavoured with spices. The mango curry added a beautiful tang, the banana blossoms was well spiced up, while the dhal curry hits the sweet spot between curry and milky.
Unfortunately, the hefty piece of fish here didn't live up to our expectations. While there was a thick layer of spices covering its surface, in terms of flavour, it was quite mild. Not spicy, not peppery, and not even sour.
This Pork Red Rice was a winner. The Thalana Batu curry, Thumba curry and Kiri Ala curry were creamy as hell, all thanks to the generous infusion of coconut milk. They do some great pork curry as well. Very little to no fatty cuts, and packed with spices. Everything went well with the fresh and crunchy mallum.
*Pictured above – Watalappan (left) and Jelly Yoghurt (right)
Out of the dessert options, we got a Watalappan (Rs. 60) and a Jelly Yoghurt (Rs. 40).
The Watalappan was sickeningly sweet, so we didn't try more than two spoonfuls of it. The Jelly Yoghurt was all right.
Ambience & Service
They're always packed with customers, but there's plenty of seating space spread throughout two floors. Clean and well maintained, the interior has a unique charm of its own.
The staff is well geared up with masks, friendly and will carefully assort your plate with the curries of your choice.
This area of town lacks a proper rice and curry joint, and Mr Gamarala fills up that void. They're generous with portions, have quite the variety too, and totally give your money's worth.