Artwork for PickMe Flash top banner 2 - August 2020
Artwork for Coke with food - top banner
Artwork for amex sidebar banner Artwork for New internal sidebar 10.08.2020

4/5

Tsing Tao (Colombo Racecourse)

Race Course Promenade, Reid Avenue, Colombo 7


Tsing Tao is a fine dinning Chinese restaurant that strikes a good a balance between authentic and Sri Lankanized Chinese, in a chic and elegant setting.



Tsing Tao is a fine dining Chinese restaurant located at the Colombo Racecourse. It's expensive, but the food is worth it.

Chinese. We've been eating our way through Colombo for about a year now and we still haven't managed to get through the city's vast range of hot butter cuttlefish and chilli paste wielding establishments. But within the many sub genres of Chinese restaurants that exist (mainland, Sri Lankan, pan-asian), what we've really neglected is fine dining Chinese.

What is fine dining Chinese? In Sri Lanka this particular branch of cuisine mainly consists of five star hotel restaurants: Emporer's Wok (The Hilton), Long Feng (Cinnamon Lakeside), Yue Chuan (The Kingsbury). Tsing Tao, not attached to a big hotel, is the newest of the group; it's located at the Colombo Racecourse - a beautiful but somewhat bizarrely compiled complex of shops and eateries.

The words 'overpriced' and 'expensive' have come up a lot in TripAdvisor reviews and general comments about Tsing Tao. Admittedly, the place isn't cheap - due to an imported chef and ingredients - but the food is really quite good and definitely worth a couple of visits. We've also figured out a basic trick to keep the price down, if you read on.

The Food



So, the food. The menu is vast (over 200 items I hear - didn't actually count), and therefore choosing can be tricky. Little descriptions could have been helpful, but there's a little like button icon next to recommended dishes to help you navigate. We ordered the Hong Kong chicken (Rs. 738, small), prawns with dry chilli (Rs. 1078, small), sizzling aubergine (Rs. 638, small), ma po tofu with minced pork (Rs. 738, small) and three steamed rices (Rs. 594). All the dishes were very good, but the sizzling aubergine was the champion of the meal. Piping hot discs of aubergine are slathered in a garlicky sauce and the flesh is soft and flavourful - almost meaty. It goes well with a simple steamed rice - fried rice may over complicate the flavours. The tofu with minced pork is also recommended - slick cubes of tofu are dredged with crumbed pork and thickly weaved through with a rich sauce. Again, goes very well with a simple rice.

The Troublesome Matter of Portions



Tsing Tao has been criticised for their smalls being, well, small. This is probably because Chinese food tends to be approached with an all-you-can-eat attitude - the more stuffed you are at the end of the meal, the better the experience. Tsing Tao doesn't provide mountains of prawns and towering heaps of rice. The small portions are indeed, small, but not unfairly so. Our selection of four smalls fed three quite comfortably and we even had a bit left over. You may not feel immobile and lethargic post-meal - but this is a good thing.

The Place



There are two dining sections, a more conventional space below and a prettier (but harder to access due to some rather steep stairs) glass rectangle above that overlooks the grounds and Reid Avenue. The upper area is nicer because of the view, but on our visit it was uncomfortably hot and stuffy. Perhaps an A/C malfunction. The staff, however, are obliging and the service is good - if a little slow. Our meal took well over half an hour to reach the table and getting the bill also takes a good fifteen minutes.

The Price



Our meal for three, with one beer, came to Rs. 5,500. That's about Rs. 1,800 per person. I really don't think this is that bad. You'd be paying about the same at Flower Drum - for more quantity perhaps but significantly lower quality and not nearly as nice a setting. Add more drinks, however, and the price shoots up. A tall Lion costs Rs. 460 - which brings it just under the Gallery Cafe on YAMU's Lion Index, ie. it's the second most most expensive bottle of Lion you could buy. Which is essentially the issue - the food is more or less fairly priced, the drinks aren't.

And So...



Avoid too many drinks, and get your buzz off the food. Because it's really very good.

TIP

If you like intense flavours, try the dishes that come with sauces.
All Reviews

Tsing Tao is a fine dinning Chinese restaurant that strikes a good a balance between authentic and Sri Lankanized Chinese, in a chic and elegant setting.

Tsing Tao is a relatively new fine dining Chinese restaurant located at the Colombo Racecourse. It's expensive, but the food is worth it.

සිංහල චයිනීස් කියලා නා නා විධ විදියට බෝඩ් ගහලා තිබුණත්, ඒ ගොඩක් තැන්වලින් අපට කන්න ලැබෙන්නේ ඔරිජිනල් චයිනීස් කෑම නෙවෙයිනේ. හුඟක් වෙලාවට ඕවයේ තියෙන්නේ ලංකාවේ විදියට හැඩ ගැහුණු චයිනීස් කෑම. හැබැයි ඔරිජිනල් චයිනීස් කෑම කාපු මනුස්සයා තමයි ඒකෙ නියම රස දන්නේ. ඉතින් "චයිනීස් කෑම කොහෙත් එකයි" කියලා හිතාගෙන ඉඳපු මගේ යාළුවත් ඇදගෙන මං ලඟදි දවසක ගොඩ වුණේ කොළඹ හතේ ට්සින් ටාඕ එකට.

සිංහල කොළඹ රේස්කෝර්ස් එකේ පිහිටි "ත්සිං තාවෝ" තරමක් අලුත් කදිම චීන අවන්හලක්. ඒක මිල අධික තැනක් වුණත් ඒකේ කෑම ගෙවන ගානට වටිනවා.

Address

Race Course Promenade, Reid Avenue, Colombo 7

Directions

The Racecourse is across the street from Royal College on Reid Avenue (officially Philip Gunewardena). From Independence Avenue you can turn right opposite Maitland Crescent. There's parking. You can also walk here from Independence Square, just follow the road past Sri Lanka Foundation Institute.

Contacts

E-Mail Facebook Website

Report Inaccuracy

Open 11 AM to 3 PM, 6 PM to 11 PM

Cuisine

Fine Dining Chinese

Price Range

More than Rs.1500

Ratings Breakdown

Overall Rating
4
Quality Rating
4
Service Rating
3
Ambience Rating
4

Similar Places

User Reviews
P
1

5/5

0

pemith

All in all a good experience , definitely will be going back many oftentimes. the staff is friendly and Good plus the portions are fairly very big too and the music was spot on , not too loud not disturbing

D
1

5/5

0

DihandeSilva

Been Visiting Tsing Tao for about an Year and I must say the quality of the food has never ever changed. Its probably one of the best meals iv had in Colombo And THE BEST Chinese Food iv had. Tried The Flat Glass Noodles in Chinese Sauce which Was just addictive. You just want to eat that over and over again. Schichuan Style Hot and Sour Seafood Soup Was just mind blowing to say the least. Highly Recommending that one. and I just cant emphasize enough on their Kung Pao Chicken and Pork in Ginger Sauce. Thats Probably two of my favorite restaurant dishes in Sri Lanka. Its Simply Amazing. I think if you do visit Tsing Tao its a MUST. When it comes to dessert my usual would be the Brandied Fig Toreté which is not too chocolaty but the mix is just well balanced. Tsing Tao Definitely is one of top 5 and one of my favorite restaurants in the city with a great ambiance and staff. And honestly I dont think the pricing is over priced at all. For that Quality of Food I think the price is quite reasonable and that if you are ordering dishes such as the Lobster etc I dont think its cheap anywhere. Brilliant Food and High Quality thats how I would Summarize this restaurant.

P
1

5/5

0

pemith

All in all a good experience , definitely will be going back many oftentimes. the staff is friendly and Good plus the portions are fairly very big too and the music was spot on , not too loud not disturbing

D
1

5/5

0

DihandeSilva

Been Visiting Tsing Tao for about an Year and I must say the quality of the food has never ever changed. Its probably one of the best meals iv had in Colombo And THE BEST Chinese Food iv had. Tried The Flat Glass Noodles in Chinese Sauce which Was just addictive. You just want to eat that over and over again. Schichuan Style Hot and Sour Seafood Soup Was just mind blowing to say the least. Highly Recommending that one. and I just cant emphasize enough on their Kung Pao Chicken and Pork in Ginger Sauce. Thats Probably two of my favorite restaurant dishes in Sri Lanka. Its Simply Amazing. I think if you do visit Tsing Tao its a MUST. When it comes to dessert my usual would be the Brandied Fig Toreté which is not too chocolaty but the mix is just well balanced. Tsing Tao Definitely is one of top 5 and one of my favorite restaurants in the city with a great ambiance and staff. And honestly I dont think the pricing is over priced at all. For that Quality of Food I think the price is quite reasonable and that if you are ordering dishes such as the Lobster etc I dont think its cheap anywhere. Brilliant Food and High Quality thats how I would Summarize this restaurant.

See 26 Comments