We haven't been to Ginger for a while, so we decided to see if anything had changed since the last time we visited. The issues we had before were the high prices and the small portions. While the prices are still somewhat high, we were pretty stuffed at the end of our meal, so they've improved on that front. Otherwise it seems it's business as usual with satisfactory food and service.
The menu is fairly broad with a mix of mains and smaller plates like sandwiches and salads. It was nice to see a good selection of veggie options as well. It doesn’t seem to have changed from the last time we were here. It’s billed as the place “where authentic Asian flavours are essentially electrified with the concept of modern culture”. We’re still not sure how steak and kidney pie is Asian, but I digress.
The manager recommended the Portuguese Style Seafood rice at Rs. 1800. We went with that and a Ginger Burger (beef) for Rs. 1300. We asked for it to be medium rare, but were told that it’s better well done, being local beef. Didn't quite inspire confidence as to the freshness or quality of the meat.
The burger presentation was standard café fare, nothing special. There was very little flavour from the burger itself, as if it was under seasoned. The bun was dry and almost stale, and the egg wasn’t runny enough to at least counteract the lack of juiciness. Disappointing when paying Rs. 1300 for a burger. Unusually the best aspect of the dish was the chips. They were crunchy, well-seasoned and moreish.
The Portuguese Style Seafood rice was plated neatly in a tagine style dish; alongside some tabasco sauce to zing it up. The rice was well seasoned with a nice level of spice in the background that didn’t overpower the dish. There was a heap of seafood as well, with prawns, fish and cuttlefish together with chorizo. The portion size was massive, and could easily serve 2 people for lunch.
For dessert we opted for an Apple Pie with Ice Cream and a Ginger Mocha Meringue pudding. The Apple Pie texture was disappointing, having been microwaved and losing the crunch of the pastry. The filling was enjoyable, with the tartness of the apples complementing the cinnamon.
The Ginger Mocha Meringue pudding was gingery and chocolatey, but the coffee flavour didn’t come through as much as we would have liked and the tiniest swirl of meringue made us wonder why they would call it a meringue pudding. The attempt to add texture with cashews didn’t really work in our opinion, and didn't sit well against the other flavours.
We went for the Irish Cream Iced Latte and the Chocolate Milkshake to cool down. The latte tasted more of caramel than Irish cream and was overly sweet, killing the coffee flavour that’s needed to balance the sweetness. The texture of the latte was smooth and creamy; it would have been nicer if it were colder.
The Chocolate Milkshake like the latte was creamy, mouth coating and frothy. Unlike the latte it was beautifully cold.
The café is a cosy space in the Cotton Collection car park. Despite its location on Dharmapala Mawatha, it's quiet and intimate. The design is kind of rustic chic, it’s tasteful and has some personality to it, compared to some of the chains' coffee shops in Colombo. Another plus is that they haven’t tried to squeeze as many chairs into the space, keeping it spacious and not too congested.
The café was quiet when we came in on a Tuesday around 2.30; to be honest it’s nicer that way. As you come in there’s a coffee bar area with some cakes and desserts on the left and a small secluded outdoor space out the back (great for Valentine’s day coming up…), continuing the chic theme seen in the main café.
Overall we’d say Ginger is a solid café. Service was ordinary, food and drinks came in pretty good time, but the waiters need more training. The ambience is really chilled and would be a great place to sit and read. Food on the other hand, was hit and miss, and when you factor in the price isn’t great value. The portions seemed to have improved on the last time we visited and that’s a plus. It's average, but if you're in the vicinity it's worth dropping by.
Lovely ambience, slow food.
We tried Ginger again. Their prices are the same, but their portion size has increased.
Our most nostalgic food court gets a make-over.
Good place for snacks & short eats, but other food are ?
One of the best place to eat delicious authentic Sri Lankan…