Ain't nothing better than a sizzling platter ladened with juicy, fatty cuts of grilled meats, dressed in a sweet, spicy and tangy sauce, or old-school salt-and-pepper rubs - especially if you're planning to get your drink on.
So for all the big eaters/drinkers among us, here's where to get the top quality hunks of meat/seafood, grilled/smoked to perfection and served in the platter form.
After closing down their place in Racecourse Grand Stand, Playtrix is back with a bang - in an all-new spot inside Colombo City Centre. Their Mixed Grill is a bit on the pricey end, clocking in at Rs. 2800, but carries a whole load of meats and sides - two strips of bacon, two fillets of chicken, two eggs (sunny side up), one chicken sausage, one pork sausage, one beef fillet, one pork tenderloin, corn on the cob, and a side salad. Paired with their in-house made mustard sauce and a sweet sauce made with bits of plum, date and dried apple, you're in for a treat!
M'eat US is solely dedicated to barbecuing meats - from chicken and beef to pork and sausages, and they make sure to do it very well. They've got two outlets - one in Pelawatte and the other one down Flower Road, and we've had good experiences in both of them. At Rs. 2950, their Ribs Platter is a solid deal, which comes with a giant pork rack, two full chicken legs and two sausages accompanied with a potato salad. This one is easily sharable between 2/3 people, but if your group exceeds that, they've got a bigger platter for around Rs. 5500.
Specialised in Portuguese style flame-grilled chicken, Peri Peri Kukula pairs them with some wonderfully spicy peri peri sauce. Smokey, with the perfect crisp, their chicken is well executed, and when they promise 'extra hot' sauce, it is, in fact, extra hot - to the point that it would make a grown man cry. Kukula Family Platter (Rs. 3200) is ideal for a group of 3/4 people, as it comes with a whole chicken, and two large portions of sides of our choice (garlic bread, corn on the cob, peri peri chips, peri peri basmati rice, or sweet potato chips).
Casserole Restaurant is arguably the best family style restaurant in Mount Lavinia, and they carry a massive platter of grilled proteins with all kinds of meats that you can think of. Priced at Rs. 1950, it's heavily ladened with five strips of bacon, three pork chops, two chicken fillets, two mini beef steaks, two lamb fillets, one jumbo chicken sausage, one fried egg, roast tomatoes and two slices of pineapple, accompanied by a side of steamed veggies and mashed potato. You'll need around three of your best eaters to conquer this beast of a grilled meat platter.
Relatively new to the scene, Daddy's Smokehouse is also surely a powerhouse to be contested with, and they make it known through the solid job they do. Not restricting themselves to just meat platters, they also have an arsenal of dishes including a great kottu, burgers, pasta and even hoppers. They don't have set meat platters, but they do customise them according to the customers' preference as per their request.
Al-Maas has been forking out food to the masses for many years now, and serves up a Mixed Grill that's worth every rupee you spend. It costs something less than Rs. 2000, and carries an assortment of proteins such as chicken - done two ways, beef, eggs, fish, prawns and a helping of French fries.
A newcomer to the BBQ scene in Colombo, Masma Eats does some superb meat platters. Their Extra Large Special Platter came in at Rs. 3450 sports an assortment of an extra-large pork rib, 2 pieces of grilled pork chops, 3 pieces of grilled chicken and 3 kochchi sausages. Quite enough for 4 hungry humans!
If what your heart craves for is a platter of seafood goodness, you cannot go wrong with Cajun On Wheels. True, it's a pricey option, but the quality of the seafood, and the perfection in deep frying is quite good here and we'd recommend it. Plus, we managed to get in and out for less than Rs. 5,000 for two, which is why we suggest that you order your dishes correctly.
The Assorted Ham Platter at Tea Lounge is the best deal you're going to get for the Rs. 500 note you have in your wallet. Comprised of five different varieties of ham, four varieties of pickled veggies, two rye bread rolls and a serving of tartar sauce, it's not a lot, but quite solid for the money you pay for it.
Well-known for their Chinese fare with a Lankan twist, Chopsticks introduced a bunch of Western dishes a while ago. The Mini Steak Medley is their take on a small meat platter, which includes cuts of grilled beef, pork, and chicken, along with a creamy pepper sauce, grilled potatoes, and steamed veggies. There's nothing particularly amazing about that, but each meat was tender and sweating juice, so there's that. Costs Rs. 1300.
Featuring two cuts of chicken, beef, and pork (altogether six slices of meat), grilled vegetables, pineapple, bullseye egg and potatoes cooked to your preference, the Mixed Grill Platter at The Keg is superb. For Rs. 1100, it's a lot of elements to gobble down as you sip into their boozy cocktails.
The Manhattan Fish Market has a bunch of carefully curated seafood platters, that suits every wallet. We quite enjoyed their Small Grill (Rs. 1790) that is served with calamari, tiger prawns, and a dory fillet grilled to perfection and a helping of delicious garlic rice, a portion of french fries, steamed veggies and a cup of hot sauce. Two can easily munch on this, or one, if you're really, really hungry.
Bavarian has long been the holy grail of German food in Colombo and they’ve shown no signs of slowing down, and meats play a huge role in their menu for obvious reasons. They've got three platter options - the Mixed Sausage Platter with Red Cabbage and Potato Salad (Rs. 1850), the Bavarian Platter (Rs. 4950) that features a Pork Knuckle, Beef Steak, Roast Chicken, Lamb Chops, Sausages, Bacon and Fries, and the Seafood Platter (Rs. 3200), which comes with Grilled Prawns, Shoe Lobster, Crispy Calamari, Baked Crab, Fish Fillet, Grilled Vegetables, Mashed Potatoes, Garlic Butter and Tartar Sauce.
One of the long-standing hotels in Colombo, Grand Solis's Mixed Grill is truly value for money. With around fifteen fillets of white fish, three chunks of fried chicken, three jumbo chicken sausages, batter-fried prawns, cuttlefish, grapes, and sliced apple - needlessly to say that one cannot simply tame this devil of a platter.
For Rs. 1390, The Floor By O!'s Mixed Grill Platter has a lot to offer. Presenting a grilled pork leg, cuttlefish, fried egg, chicken kochchi sausages, chicken, fish gojun, prawns, tomato and a side of BBQ sauce, this one would easily feed two hungry bellies.
A mix of an almost fairy tale kind of ambience, affordable eating and plenty of meat to go around, we really liked our experience here. The Mixed Grill Platter, priced at Rs. 1975 consists of luscious, tender beef, succulent juicy chicken, perfectly glazed, and a host of sausages that will make you experience a fusion of relishing flavours, and can fill upto two people to the brim. Sam's Barbecue is also one of the few Halal BBQ places that can be found, and they certainly do a top notch job.
Going all the way to Moratuwa for some BBQ might sound like a lot of work, but considering the quality of food you receive at Smokies, it's totally worth it. Smokies is popular for their takeaway orders, but if you insist on dining in, they'll happily accommodate you by providing a folding chair and table set. They are equipped with an open kitchen, which provides you with the opportunity of feasting your eyes upon the process of the prepartion of their delectable, juicy meats. The Mixed Grill, with three fried eggs, one chicken leg, sliced up beef, pork, lingus, fries and veggies comes at just Rs.1700 and qualifies as a total feast.
With a Junior Platter at Rs. 2950 that is quite giant, Grill House in Malabe is dedicated to serving some amazing grilled meat dishes. All their meat is prepared to perfection, and it works towards filling the void of having a top notch BBQ place in the Malabe vicinity.
Perfectly charred, succulent and profoundly flavoursome, Panaroma Restaurant's Mixed Grill is by far the best meat platter we've encountered in the suburban bar scene down High-level Road strip. Priced under Rs. 1500, this one is loaded with well-grilled sausages, crab, pork, beef, prawns, cuttlefish, a whole fish, garlic, pineapple, bullseye, and steamed veggies (potatoes, carrot, beans, and cabbage). Probably the most budget-friendly meat platter out there.
The Podium Restaurant in Thalawatugoda does a superb sizzling meat platter too. Assorted with nicely grilled two pork chops, chicken, a fish fillet, jumbo sausages, bullseye egg, pineapple, and French fries, this one is priced at Rs. 1750.
What is your go-to spot for a meat platter? Let us know in the comments.
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