Concept cafes are mushrooming all over town, creating a huge buzz, but there are quite a few places in Colombo that never run out of business. In fact, their loyal patronage refuses to choose any other cafe as their usual hangout spot. Tucked away in a tiny spot down Fife Road, Hansa Coffee is one such place that has been able to garner a devoted fan base over the years.
Hansa Coffee is now called The Blue Swan. From what we gathered, the purpose of doing so is to separate Hansa Coffee brand from the cafe, so the coffee brand can exist as an independent entity. It's the same management, and they still use the same good old Hansa coffee beans and chocolate in their food and drinks. It's just the name that has been changed.
They've got a couple of new dishes on the menu, and aside from that, everything looks the same.
Let me start with the drinks. On the top part of the tray, you can see the Flat White (Rs. 300). With a smooth microfoam layer on top, it carried a potent caffeine punch, while the properly steamed milk helped to keep the velvety texture intact.
The other drink here is one of our old favourites - the Chili Hot Chocolate (Rs. 350). It's a bit weird, yet delightful drink. Initially, you will feel like it's your average hot chocolate, but within seconds, your throat would be smacked with the spiciness. For a true Lankan, who has loved spices their entire existence, handling this heat should not be a problem.
The hot chocolate itself is a bit on the milkier side, which is quite clever as it helps to balance out the spiciness of the chilli so beautifully. Make sure to stir this well before drinking, so your sips will have all the elements in the right balance - chocolate, milk and chilli.
Now here's another quirky one - the Cheese & Tamarind Toast (Rs. 400). A generous slathering of melted cheese and tamarind chutney tucked in between three, well-toasted, crunchy bread slices, this is one solid sandwich. The sourness of the tamarind chutney plays the master flavour here, which would hold on to your tastebuds in every bite, followed by the milkiness of the cheese that slowly soothes it in. A sprinkle of some green chilis would have helped to improve its flavour even the more.
My lunch partner was quite excited ever since he saw a picture of it on Facebook. This Cheesecake (Rs. 450), is a new addition to the menu.
With a light and buttery biscuit base, a fluffy, hella creamy cheesecake filling that cuts and rolls on the palate so smoothly, it was topped off with Hansa's 60% Dark Chocolate Sauce. The milkiness of the cheesecake was nicely balanced out with the light bitterness of the dark chocolate, making for an absolute treat.
In terms of ambience, nothing has changed. It's the same old set of wooden tables, chairs, and the comfy sofa with a pile of books and magazines that you can dive into, while sipping or nibbling on something. Sure the place is crowded almost all the time, but there is something so cosy, and home-like about it. Plus, they've got good WiFi, if you want to get some work done.
Efficient, friendly, and helpful as always - we didn't experience any negativity regarding their service.
Still excellent, and going strong. We love it, and totally recommend it!
The Blue Swan operates from their home-base now.
Hansa Coffee has been renamed as The Blue Swan.
We've always been a fan of Hansa's toasties, coffee and chocolate based drinks, and it's nice to see how they've kept their game strong even during a time when new cafes are popping every corner in town.
Hansa Coffee is a great place for original Hansa coffee and chocolate, and brownies. It's an affordable, cosy coffee lounge.
This little coffeeshop on Fife road is really a breath of fresh air. More accurately, a breath heavy with the scent of freshly brewed coffee. It's really just a hole in the wall but its lack of pretension, excellent local coffee and reasonable prices (Rupees 100-200 for any conceivable sort of coffee) are a slap in the face to Colombo’s larger, overpriced mediocrity-peddling, Starbucks imitation coffee houses.
සිංහල අපි මෙතැනට ගොඩ වුණේ කැෆේ එක ඇරලා විනාඩි 30කින් වගේ. හැබැයි මෙනුවේ තියෙන සේරම කෑම ගන්න තිබුණා.
සිංහල ෆයිෆ් පාරේ පිහිටි මේ පුංචි කෝපිහල ඇත්තෙන්ම නැවුම් හුස්මකි. වඩාත් නිවැරදිව කියනවා නම් වත් කරන ලද ඉස්තරම් නැවුම් කෝපි සුවඳින් බර හුස්මකි. එය බිත්තියේ සිදුරක් වැනි පුංචි ඉඩකි. එහෙත්, බොරු සෝබන නැති එහි කදිම දේශීය කෝපි සාධාරණ මිලට ඇත. (ඕනෑම සිතාගතහැකි කෝපි වර්ගයක මිළ රු. 100ත් 200ත් අතර වේ.) එය ඇත්තෙන්ම කොළඹ සුවිසල් හීනමානී ස්ටාර්බක්ස් අනුකරණ කෝපිහල්වලට නියම කම්මුල්පාරකි.
Great place to have a delicious Sri Lankan buffet…
The warm reception we received on arriving at Earl's was…