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4/5

The Fat Crab

53 Haig Road, Colombo 4

  • Call 727777755
  • Open 5-7 PM (wine and beer), 7 -10:30 PM (dining), Weekends also open for lunch (12:30 PM to 3 PM)


The Fat Crab on Marine Drive is well known for their seafood.



The Fat Crab on Marine Drive is well known for their seafood. Especially crab.

The Food

The menu at The Fat Crab is almost entirely seafood, as one would expect. But they've got meat options as well, with the addition of the Mongolian barbecue. The seafood options are very extensive with a particular emphasis on the shellfish (y'know, being named The Fat Crab and all). The Mongolian menu is considerably smaller, but they've got cuttlefish, prawn, chicken and beef barbecue as well as fried rice options. They aren't really cheap at around Rs. 1500 - Rs. 2000 per head, but compared to alternatives like Ministry of Crab, this place is easier on the wallet.

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We got the crab curry with kade paan (Rs. 1900). This comes with a considerably large crab, a loaf of fresh kade paan (bread), pol sambol and parippu (dhal curry). All in all we were quite happy with the entire fare.

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The crab, while not the largest we've come across, had a ton of meat in it and the curry had a great balance of spices. You know you've got the curry right when you're willing to eat just the gravy and bread.

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The accompanying dishes were equally satisfying with creamy parippu and a gedara style pol sambol, which we wished there was a bit more of. Personally, I'm not a huge fan of crab because eating it is such a messy affair, but this was worth it.

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To test out their Mongolian menu we went with the full selection Mongolian fried rice (Rs. 1495), which comes with chicken, beef, cuttlefish and shrimp. We don't have very many places with good Mongolian cuisine in Colombo, but this tasted brilliant. From the rice, to the meats, to the seasoning, everything was on point.

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The long grain fried rice wasn't overly oily, cooked to the point where it's ever so slightly sticky with the flavour of the oyster sauce and sesame oil coming through well. The seafood and meats in the rice were also just right in terms of both flavour and texture. The portion size though, wasn't very large. Enough for one but at Rs. 1500 it has to serve two.

Ambience and Service

fatcrab

They've got a very simple wood structure set up, which works well with the back drop of the ocean. We were here for lunch so there's plenty of natural light and quite a bit of sea breeze, which can be both good and bad, since it'll blow away your napkin quite often unless you tuck it into your pants. Another tasteful touch is the wall of movie posters they've showcased. There isn't much relevance but it's a pretty cool touch.

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We had no complaints when it came to the service. The food came to the table faster than we expected. The waiter was friendly and had good knowledge of the menu.

Conclusion

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If you're looking for good seafood and crab in Colombo, The Fat Crab is a solid choice. It probably won't be the first place that comes to mind for a Mongolian meal but Genghis BBQ does it as well as anyone we've tried.

TIP

“No fuss – Make a Mess.”

Address

53 Haig Road, Colombo 4

Directions

Heading from Kollupitiya, go south on Marine Drive. You'll pass the Bamba rail station and Majestic City (Station Road). It's the fourth street after that.

Contacts

E-Mail Website

Report Inaccuracy

Open 5-7 PM (wine and beer), 7 -10:30 PM (dining), Weekends also open for lunch (12:30 PM to 3 PM)

Cuisine

Sri Lankan

Price Range

More than Rs.1500

Dish Types

Seafood Crab

Ratings Breakdown

Overall Rating
4
Quality Rating
4
Service Rating
3
Ambience Rating
3
User Reviews
S
1

1/5

0

sperera

On August 9th, 2019, I placed a takeout order at The Fat Crab in the morning for 6.30PM pickup and paid almost Rs. 30K with delivery fees for two giant Crabs (1KG+). The order was not ready till 7.30PM and received, only a partial order and some claws were missing from the crabs. Once contacted the manager, he was very apologetic and promised that he would make things right. Three days later, I am yet to receive even a single call or even a text message.
The Black Pepper Carb tasted like dipped in a ready-made Chinese brown sauce. The Over Cooked Sri Lankan Murunga leaf Curry crabs were quite dry, and meat has turned into fibers.
I would not recommend The Fat Carb and its poor customer service.

S
1

1/5

0

Sleepingstation

L

Disappointing!!! waste of money! Not to be repeated
After reading excellent reviews, we were promptly outside at 6pm. Restaurant opens at 6:10pm.
We were seated at a table and then asked to get up from there as it was reserved! Not a problem as food was supposed to be the best in Colombo.
Location: Sea-view (if pre-booked). railway track with train passing every 30-40 minutes( for us it was twice). Electricity went off thrice in our 1.5 hr stay.
Food: manager introduced himself and we were impressed. I wanted to order 1 extra large crab from fresh ( for both of us to share) but as my wife wanted individual ones we took advice of the manager and ordered 2 large. I queried whether these would be fresh or from frozen. He explained one can hardly notice the difference between fresh and frozen ones. On his advice, we ordered 1 Sri Lankan curry and 1 spicy Negombo sauce devilian crab.
Dishes came in 30min. Crab size appeared small with not much meat. Meat was stuck to the bones and would not come out! Pick was not given until I asked for it. Negombo was very tasty (well, the mixture was great, but hardly any meat) but Sri Lankan curry was horrible with loads of gravy probably 200times more than what is as required- not tasty at all.
We observed most diners were ordering fresh extra large crabs and as we were struggling to get meat out we asked one of the waiters as to why we had been dissuaded to order the fresh one. He replied these were 1kg = 9000 Sri Lankan rupees. But we never suggested that we would be unhappy with the price. He referred us to the manager. Manager came who was very dismissive and tried explaining that these crabs which we had ordered were 500g each and was not sure why we were complaining of meat stuck to the bones.
Anyway we finished food with rice gravy dal and bits of crab meat.
Just as we were leaving, my wife noticed trays of crabs (other diners’ orders) coming out of the kitchen. These were ‘large’ looking and she asked one of the waiters what size were they? He confirmed they were large. So surely ours were medium. However, we were then reminded that ours were not fresh. Fresh or frozen, surely 500g should look similar!
Moral of the story: please do your homework before you to such places and don’t waste 7950 rupees on rice, bread and gravy. Better try another place !!

19th April meal at 7pm.
We have had crab yesterday at Taj - Shack restaurant- heavenly

Regards

J

S
2

1/5

0

Shehan Don Talagala

As the previous user said, it's way overpriced for the average quality they offer. Much better value can be had at The Ocean (Kingsbury) or The Lagoon (Cinnamon Grand) and obviously with significantly better quality.
The wait staff are pushy and always trying to jack up the bill. This gets worse when they see a group of foreigners and will keep pestering you to order the more expensive items like lobster. It's a total tourist trap.

S
1

1/5

0

sperera

On August 9th, 2019, I placed a takeout order at The Fat Crab in the morning for 6.30PM pickup and paid almost Rs. 30K with delivery fees for two giant Crabs (1KG+). The order was not ready till 7.30PM and received, only a partial order and some claws were missing from the crabs. Once contacted the manager, he was very apologetic and promised that he would make things right. Three days later, I am yet to receive even a single call or even a text message.
The Black Pepper Carb tasted like dipped in a ready-made Chinese brown sauce. The Over Cooked Sri Lankan Murunga leaf Curry crabs were quite dry, and meat has turned into fibers.
I would not recommend The Fat Carb and its poor customer service.

S
1

1/5

0

Sleepingstation

L

Disappointing!!! waste of money! Not to be repeated
After reading excellent reviews, we were promptly outside at 6pm. Restaurant opens at 6:10pm.
We were seated at a table and then asked to get up from there as it was reserved! Not a problem as food was supposed to be the best in Colombo.
Location: Sea-view (if pre-booked). railway track with train passing every 30-40 minutes( for us it was twice). Electricity went off thrice in our 1.5 hr stay.
Food: manager introduced himself and we were impressed. I wanted to order 1 extra large crab from fresh ( for both of us to share) but as my wife wanted individual ones we took advice of the manager and ordered 2 large. I queried whether these would be fresh or from frozen. He explained one can hardly notice the difference between fresh and frozen ones. On his advice, we ordered 1 Sri Lankan curry and 1 spicy Negombo sauce devilian crab.
Dishes came in 30min. Crab size appeared small with not much meat. Meat was stuck to the bones and would not come out! Pick was not given until I asked for it. Negombo was very tasty (well, the mixture was great, but hardly any meat) but Sri Lankan curry was horrible with loads of gravy probably 200times more than what is as required- not tasty at all.
We observed most diners were ordering fresh extra large crabs and as we were struggling to get meat out we asked one of the waiters as to why we had been dissuaded to order the fresh one. He replied these were 1kg = 9000 Sri Lankan rupees. But we never suggested that we would be unhappy with the price. He referred us to the manager. Manager came who was very dismissive and tried explaining that these crabs which we had ordered were 500g each and was not sure why we were complaining of meat stuck to the bones.
Anyway we finished food with rice gravy dal and bits of crab meat.
Just as we were leaving, my wife noticed trays of crabs (other diners’ orders) coming out of the kitchen. These were ‘large’ looking and she asked one of the waiters what size were they? He confirmed they were large. So surely ours were medium. However, we were then reminded that ours were not fresh. Fresh or frozen, surely 500g should look similar!
Moral of the story: please do your homework before you to such places and don’t waste 7950 rupees on rice, bread and gravy. Better try another place !!

19th April meal at 7pm.
We have had crab yesterday at Taj - Shack restaurant- heavenly

Regards

J

S
2

1/5

0

Shehan Don Talagala

As the previous user said, it's way overpriced for the average quality they offer. Much better value can be had at The Ocean (Kingsbury) or The Lagoon (Cinnamon Grand) and obviously with significantly better quality.
The wait staff are pushy and always trying to jack up the bill. This gets worse when they see a group of foreigners and will keep pestering you to order the more expensive items like lobster. It's a total tourist trap.

C
2

2/5

0

chamzangeleyes

Went there yesterday for dinner,was a quiet nite wz few ppl,we ordered a murugaun crab wz bread….a large (which is enough for 2 as per the staff)& 2 strawberry mojito when it came to the table….it lookd really small…and a loaf of bread(i didnt go there to eat bread)so we orderd a another large……it was the same……the crab is really overpriced, 3200 per large potion….which is clearly not enough for 2…and the juices n cocktails r over priced to….675 for a strawberry mohito(mind u it a virgin)finally d bill came to around 8500….and its wz a service charge too.which i think is clearly a rip off……crab was tasty……but portion size needs real improvement……i will not go ther……again……or recommend……its not all worth d price u pay for a small spider crab……

See 29 Comments