Alcatras sounds like a name out of a Tintin book, and while that could be the case, the Alcatras that we're referring to takes place somewhere closer to home. In Dehiwala to be exact.
Doing a range of dishes that mainly revolves around things that are Sri Lankan-Chinese, Alcatras restaurant is the newest addition to Dehiwala's blossoming restaurant scene.
Given how new they are, they don't do dine-in just yet; even though it says so on their Facebook page. Instead, they stick to take away orders only, for the moment.
A quirky mix of bamboo painted walls, goldfish and rice and curry, the ambience at Alcatras restaurant is pretty much the same as most other restaurants of its genre.
We should mention that they do have seating for people who come to pick up their food. Which definitely came in handy because we waited for almost half an hour for our food.
That being said though, the staff was incredibly nice to us. The only real problem we had was the waiting time for the food, unfortunately.
With a range of chicken and seafood options as sides and no more than 5 starters, the menu at Alcatras isn't large, but they do have enough of a variety to satisfy anyone.
We started off with a small portion of Hot Butter Cuttlefish (Rs. 700). A nice golden colour, the HBC had sogged up by the time we had got to the office and was not as great as we would have liked. The cuttlefish was battered quite well, spiced up adequately too, but the amount of oil was a tad too much.
The Thai Rice (Rs. 600) actually turned out to be quite all right. Fluffy rice spiced well with as few a vegetable as possible, we wouldn't necessarily call it wonderful, but there was a blunt spiciness that came from the rice which we found really interesting. And combined with the Chilli Chicken, it turned out to be a worthy dish to get.
The Chilli Chicken(Rs. 550) happened to be my favourite dish of the day. Saucy, spicy and having quite a generous portion of well-cooked meat included in the dish, we really liked it. Plus, look how fiery it looks!
The sad part about buying deep-fried things take away is that it gets all sogged up and sad. Which was essentially what happened with the Potato Wedges(Rs. 450).
Thick cut and golden brown in colour, the potato wedges had a slightly thick interior but was cooked through, but just didn't cut it for us.
In conclusion, all we can say is that, while Alcatras does have a lot of room for improvement, they're not unworthy of looking out for. However, if you do go, we suggest getting the Chilli Chicken.
Sri Lankan Chinese infused with a wee bit of a whole bunch of other saucy Asian dishes.
සිංහල චිලි චිකන් එක ට්රයි කරන්න!