Everyone, and we mean everyone who loves a good sitcom, loves Friends. And it's understandable, really. It's one of those TV shows anyone and everyone can watch no matter the circumstance.
When word got out that a cafe by the name of Central Perk was opening up, every single fan of this show immediately went into panic mode, including us. I mean come on, after spending hours binging the show for years, to have the option of going to a cafe with a Friends theme was pretty exciting. Thus, 2 days after they opened shop, we dropped in for a First Look.
The Central Perk Colombo refers to a 3 story building, wholely dedicated to Friends. From the purple door of Monica's apartment to posters with references to the TV show everywhere, and that nostalgic orange coloured couch, The Central Perk Colombo is everything about this beloved show.
With lots of seating in 3 different tiers of a building while one side facing the beach and a killer playlist of songs playing in the background, the ambience at Central Perk as a cafe was as good as it could possibly get.
The food menu at The Central Perk isn't very large. It's actually limited to a few mains at the moment, a couple of cakes and a bunch of coffee.
The cheapest option on the list in terms of food was the Sweet Potato Fries (Rs. 380). Served in a cone type steel spirally thing, the fries were on the soggy side, and had a sprinkle of salt and chilli powder slipped in.
Going to a Friends themed restaurant and not getting a main titled Unagi is probably illegal in some countries. Clocking in at Rs. 1100, this deep-fried calamari portion was served warm, and had a thick layer of crunchy batter coating. Deliciously chewy, with bits of spring onions scattered about, the calamari itself was alright, but a bit more seasoning could have easily improved it.
Then came the Moo Point (Rs. 800) – the beef burger. Trapping a healthy pattie of well-grounded beef topped off with avocado, mayo and a couple of sliced olives, it was alright. The bun was sort of dry for our liking, but we didn't mind that, as the combination of avocado, mayo and a drizzle of cheese made up for it. I personally couldn't handle all that creaminess, but my lunch partners were okay with it.
This wasn't bad in anyway, but we wish if they had included more elements to kick it up a notch. Perhaps some playful pickles, maybe? Yum!
The fries, on the other hand, were good. Golden brown with a sprinkle of chilli powder on top, it was served hot, and crispy – unlike the sweet potato fries.
We also decided to get a slice of their Blueberry Cheesecake (Rs. 500). On the good side, they had given a generous helping of coulis, for which we're very grateful. However, the cream filling itself wasn't fluffy and kept crumbling away, while the biscuit base was a tad too soggy.
As for drinks, we decided to opt for a Mocha Ice Fusion (Rs. 690) and a Spanish Latte (Rs. 690).
*Pictured above – Mocha Ice Fusion (left), Spanish Latte (right)
The Spanish Latte, as the name suggests, was milky. Milky and sweet. While we could trace slight hints of coffee running through, the ratio of milk was a tad too much than that of a regular latte. Combined with the sweetness of the condensed milk, it was straight up just sweet milk.
Made with cocoa powder, water, sugar, the Mocha Ice Fusion was sweeter than being chocolatey.
The service at The Central Perk is quite brilliant. Super nice and welcoming, they managed to bring our food within around 5 – 10 minutes. Considering the number of customers that had in the house at the moment, it's pretty impressive.
The Central Perk really new to the cafe scene in Colombo, and certainly has room for improvement, in terms of food and drinks, and we're super excited for it. Aside from Geek HQ, this is the first themed cafe in Colombo, which is another thing to be psyched about. We're looking forward to our full review soon, and if you love Friends as much as we do, drop by and try them out.