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2/5

Moon River

140, Thimbirigasyaya Road, Colombo 05,


Besides one dish, Moon River gave us nothing to be happy about. We honestly cannot recommend it with all the new alternatives in Colombo.



Moon River is a member of the old guard of Chinese restaurants in Colombo is always full. While large crowds usually means good food, that wasn't the case for us. The food here is mediocre and the service for locals is not good.

The Food

Lately we've seen a a deterioration in quality among older Chinese restaurants, and it seems Moon River is no exception.

For the carb base of our meal, we tried the deep fried Shanghai noodles with seafood (Rs. 998 for S). While the noodles are deep fried, it's a wet dish, which we hoped would be a nice contrast. It wasn't. The fried noodles just ended up soggy and the whole thing ended up like a tasteless soup. While there were plenty of prawns and calamari in the noodles, the dish was under-seasoned and bland.

The hot butter cuttlefish (Rs. 698 for S) wasn't too impressive either. While the texture of the batter and the cuttlefish were fine, this too lacked the seasoning and that kick of chilli that really helps the overall flavour of a good HBC. There were dried chillies in this one but just sprinkled over the top which doesn't really bind to anything.

The salt and pepper chicken (Rs. 598 for S) was okay, but nothing to write home about. It's very simple preparation with lightly batter fried chicken cubes, tossed in salt and pepper, served with diced tomatoes and onions. After the bland noodles and HBC we were just glad to finally taste some salt and pepper.

After our recent feature on where to get good pork dishes in Colombo, we got a recommendation for the village style pork (Rs. 998) at Moon River. We gave it a shot and it turned out to be quite nice indeed. It's mostly pork belly prepared like a stir fry with a good amount of soy. The downside here is that it's equal parts pork to green beans and green chillies. The beans and chilli are nearly indistinguishable from each other, making the dish a bit of a minefield. Just keep a cup of water handy.

Price-wise, they're not too bad. Small dishes are priced at around Rs. 550 and large is around Rs. 850. The only issue is that not all the dishes are available in small and large, with the more specialized ones available only in a single portion size, which seems to be too much for two and too little for four. One good thing is their menu has images for every single dish, albeit only vaguely accurate.

Service and Ambience

Service at Moon River left much to be desired. They have both local and Chinese waiters with each catering to their respective clientele. While the Chinese waiters seemed so nice to the Chinese customers, the local waiters were dismissive at best. Before coming to our table the waiter gave us a look that pretty much translated to "why are you even here?", perhaps because we dropped in at the end of the lunch service. While the food came to the table fast, the poor customer service left a bad impression.

We don't think they've done any real improvements to the interior since the place first opened up. They've also stuffed as many tables as humanly possible in here, so be prepared to hear the entire conversation the folks at the neighboring tables are having. You'll also most likely be flailing your arms around quite a bit to keep the flies off the food.

Conclusion

Besides that one pork dish, Moon River gave us nothing to be happy about, which leads us to wonder how they have such large crowds. We honestly cannot recommend it with all the new Chinese food alternatives in Colombo.


TIP

They should have chicken feet on the menu, if you're adventurous.
All Reviews

Besides one dish, Moon River gave us nothing to be happy about. We honestly cannot recommend it with all the new alternatives in Colombo.

Besides one dish, Moon River gave us nothing to be happy about. We honestly cannot recommend it with all the new alternatives in Colombo.

සිංහල ඒක වෙලාවකට හිතෙනවා කොළඹ කොච්චර චීන අවන්හල් තියෙනවද කියලා. වායුසමීකරණය කරන ලද වාඩිවෙලා ආහාර ගන්න පුළුවන් අවන්හල් ගණන් කරලා බැලුවොත් චීන අවන්හල් තමයි අනිත් ඒවාට වඩා වැඩි වෙන්නේ. ශ්‍රී ලාංකික අවන්හල් වලටත් වඩා චීන අවන්හල් තියේවි. මම හරියාකාර සංගණනයක් කරලා නැහැ. ඒත් අඩුම තරමේ චීන අවන්හල් 100ක්වත් කොළඹ නගරයේ ඇති.හොට් බටර් කට්ල්ෆිෂ් පිඟන් මිලියනයක් කාලා බැලුවට පස්සෙවත් හිතෙන්නේ නැද්ද ඇයි ඔබ වෙනස් තැනකට නොයන්නේ කියලා? අපිට තායි අවන්හල් තව ටිකක් තිබුණොත් කොහොමද? කියුබන් අවන්හල් කොහොමද? මයන්මාර් නැත්නම් සෙනෙගාල් අවන්හල් කොහොමට ඇද්ද? ඒත් කොළඹ ජනගහනයෙන් විශාල කොටසකට චීන අහාර තමයි හුරුපුරුදු.

Address

140, Thimbirigasyaya Road, Colombo 05,

Directions

Head down Thimbirigasyaya Road, pass Sen Saal, its on your right before the turning to Fife road.

Contacts

Report Inaccuracy

Open 11.00 AM-3.00 PM & 6.00PM -11.00 pm

Cuisine

Chinese Sri Lankan Chinese

Price Range

Between Rs. 500 - Rs. 1000

Dish Types

Seafood

Ratings Breakdown

Overall Rating
2
Quality Rating
3
Service Rating
2
Ambience Rating
2
Similar Places

User Reviews
S
1

5/5

0

shadow

Very tasty, relatively less oily.
There are some very good dishes here, you have to be a bit adventurous to try :)

I was surprised to find this rated so low because leaving aside other things, the food is pretty good hence the place is pretty crowded mostly by Chinese tourists.

S
1

1/5

0

Shaxrina

If you wanna kill your tastebuds or if they are already dead, this is the best place to have your food. Chicken doesn't taste like chicken and there's no flavor in any of the dishes we ordered. Don't bother spending your cash here.

S
1

5/5

0

shadow

Very tasty, relatively less oily.
There are some very good dishes here, you have to be a bit adventurous to try :)

I was surprised to find this rated so low because leaving aside other things, the food is pretty good hence the place is pretty crowded mostly by Chinese tourists.

S
1

1/5

0

Shaxrina

If you wanna kill your tastebuds or if they are already dead, this is the best place to have your food. Chicken doesn't taste like chicken and there's no flavor in any of the dishes we ordered. Don't bother spending your cash here.

Avatar for apricotjam
3

2/5

0

apricotjam

I've been here twice before, ages ago. On the most recent visit the food was very bland (fried rice, a veg dish and a supposed spicy chicken dish), one of the dishes had peanuts in it but this was not mentioned on the menu (given it's a commonly allergy-inducing food, that's crazy), the service was poor too as we were not served water till we had finished the meal and there was no welcome or warmth.

Somehow this place is consistently packed for dinner service though, but it seems to mostly cater to the tourist crowd.

N
1

3/5

0

Namz

Decent little place, btw the phone number is 259-6885, 2596882 is the fax.

See 22 Comments