Taco Bell is a widely known international chain serving up Tex-Mex. They were a hit when they landed here, firstly on Colombo 7 and then on Marine Drive. Even though the novelty has died down a bit by now, you can still see a decent number of people hanging around.
Given we were around Mount Lavinia, looking for a spot to hang out for an early dinner, Taco Bell seemed like an easy choice.
They are a fast-food chain, so this isn’t the place to expect something authentic. We spotted the usual Tex-Mex fare with a few beverages here, and their meals are a better choice for anyone who’s dining under a budget.
With the Taco Meal (Rs. 980) we chose a soft taco (tortilla) with crispy chicken, a crunchy taco with Mexican chicken and then the sides of tortilla chips & salsa.
We enjoyed the crispy shell of the crunchy taco. True to the name, the shell had the crunch, but we felt the Mexican chicken could use some more flavour. The filling was generous with cheese and they hadn’t doused it with lettuce which we appreciated. With the bit of help from the provided hot sauce, we enjoyed it.
The crispy chicken in the soft taco had a decent amount of chickeny flavour. It gave a slight KFC vibe to it with a tad peppery note. The flavours of cheese and veggies combined made things better. However, we felt that they could have been a bit more generous with the filling.
While we very much enjoyed munching the tortilla chips, the salsa with its sour tones didn’t impress us. But the chips were dusted generously with chilli powder and we ate it as is and then using some sauce to improve it more.
The Chalupa was fried well but didn’t impress us much since it reminded so much of plain roti. We got the beef filling and it was alright at best.
We also tried a 7 Layered Fajita Chicken Burrito (Rs. 720), which was bursting with a filling made of beans, rice, cheese, jalapeno and a bit of lettuce and onions. The fajita chicken was cooked beautifully with notes of curry flavour seeping through, while the jalapeno added a bit of heat. Couple this with the sauces to manage the heat and you got yourself a winner.
Our decision to try their Passion Fruit Mojito (Rs. 280) backfired as it tasted so syrupy almost to the level of being synthetic. There was a decent fizz and they haven’t overdone with the sugar but we could have used a bit less ice which sort of watered down the whole thing.
Service & Ambience
The staff at the Taco Bell Mount Lavinia was very friendly, polite and was ready to help. Even though we noticed a bit of delay with our order it’s quite understandable with the multitude of orders they were catering to.
Even though the place was quite nearby to the Galle Rd, we didn’t get intruded by the traffic noise. Everything inside was clean and you have a good look of the kitchen as well as the overhanging TV if you are into current sports events.
Our past visits to them have been mediocre at best and this time around, we can say that it still is. Like most international franchise in Sri Lanka, the food here seems a bit overpriced. If we were looking for some amazingly tasty Mexican fare, Taco Bell wouldn’t be our first choice, but given how comfy and cosy the ambience is, we see why this place has so many patrons.