Kaala Balan - Maha Gedara was an instant hit when they opened their buth kadey in Ratmalana, and we were absolutely thrilled when we heard about the opening of their second outlet. This one is in Boralesgamuwa, and much like their headquarters, here too you can find good rice & curry with a Sri Lankan touch.
They have a couple of rice variants and more than enough curries - neatly displayed in clay pots. You can choose from pork, beef, and chicken here as your protein and four more curries to go with that. As we gathered, the food was cooked in their main outlet and then transported here.
We chose the Chicken Rice & Curry (Rs. 280) and the Pork Rice & Curry (Rs.290) which they served on nelum kole (lotus leaf) placed on pan wattis (woven tray). If this doesn’t hint Sri Lankan, we don’t know what does.
The chicken rice & curry had well cooked red rice along with a big piece of chicken, pol sambol, bonchi, parrippu curry, gotukola mallum, manioc curry and some good old papadum and fried chillies.
The chicken piece was huge (and as per your luck you might score even bigger piece) and it was marinated with spices to boot while giving plenty of chickeny flavours. While the pol sambol was seasoned well, it was on the sour side of things. I’m not the biggest fan of it, but my lunch partner loved it.
We felt the parippu curry could have used a bit more spices but it was decently thick and had a good creamy flavour going on, so we didn’t mind. Gotukola mallum seemed fresh, very leafy and added a bit bitter note while the manioc curry was creamy, with semi-hard pieces of manioc that we enjoyed eating by itself and mixing in with the rice. The bonchi, however, seemed stir-fried. We’d have prefered the usual cooked curry route, because, while those pieces of bonchi looked nice, and added a good crunch, they were a tad bit hard.
We've always devoured Kaala Balan's pork curry, and we were thrilled to see it here as well. Well cooked white rice served as the base for this plate with a generous serving of pork curry, mango curry, tempered ladies fingers, parrippu, bonchi, pol sambol with fried chillis and papadum.
With goraka and pepper slipped in, the pork curry was good, but we felt like it's a bit toned down than the ones we've had at their Ratmalana branch. The mango curry gave off a tangy burst which coupled well with the rice, while the tempered ladies fingers spicing things up.
They don’t have desserts as their other branch does (not at the moment, at least). We spotted a water container in the room, with pieces of fruits and cucumber swimming about. If you like something refreshing on the side, you can opt for a glass of this.
The whole mood here follows the style in their HQ, but smaller than that in terms of space, but sports the same funky signs. The coconut palm leaf woven canopy coupled with the pseudo windows added to the gami vibe.
The staff was very pleasant and diligent. The place was clean and could hold up to 12- 16 people at once. If there is anything to nitpick is that the place is quite open to the road and you get bothered by the occasional honking of the vehicles passing by.
Kaala Balan scores points with us for serving some solid rice and curry. While we felt that they have things to smooth out here and there, they very much managed to capture the same level of experience we enjoyed from their main outlet. For the price we paid, it was a pretty good deal as the flavours are quite authentic.
If you are in the area with a need to try out a hefty serving of delicious rice and curry or to take away a decent buth packet home, this is a fine place to drop by.