Negombo is an incredibly touristy, lively fishing town - therefore, seafood plays a huge role in its restaurant culture. Here, you can get some of the best seafood dishes in the country, made from the freshest marine/lagoon produce of the day.
Negombo streets are packed with good seafood restaurants, and during our weekend here, we dropped by this place called Tusker - a restaurant that's well known for serving up some excellent seafood dishes and great cocktails for a decent fare.
It was 7.30pm and frankly, we were quite full from our amazing meal at Aromas Cafe and Pizzeria, so we decided to skip the starters and order a couple of mains to go with our cocktails.
The Tiger Prawns (Rs. 1350) dish tasted every bit as good as it looks! It had around 500 grams of medium to large sized, lightly grilled prawns, served with a portion of vegetable fried rice and a fresh vegetable salad drizzled with mango infused vinaigrette. The prawns were fleshy, chewy, and succulent with a good amount of flesh, instead of just shell. Garnished with a slice of lime, this one was a real treat.
The vegetable fried rice was seasoned well, and had a sprinkle of spring onions and carrots, which made a good accompaniment to the prawns. We liked the vegetable salad too. The veggies were fresh and crunchy, while the mango infused vinaigrette added a little tartness to the whole dish.
The Chili Crab (Rs. 1200) was incredible! We almost couldn't believe how good it was because where else have you seen this kinda delicious and massive crab portion for just Rs. 1200?
It's a flavorsome concoction of medium sized succulent crab, soaked in a mildly sweet, fiery and tangy chili sauce. Presented with a side of the same vegetable fried rice and vegetable salad, this one is definitely one of the best, and generous crab dishes I've come across.
From their range of cocktails, we ordered up a Piña Colada (Rs. 1000) and a Margarita (Rs. 1100).
The margarita was a classic. Involving the usual margarita mix, generous amounts of Tequila and garnished with a limey twist, this drink had all the proper elements of a good Margarita in the right balance. We liked it.
Veering off from the regualar piña colada recipe with coconut cream, Tusker Restaurant makes a great one with vanilla ice cream as well. Featuring a slice of fresh pineapple, a dash of white rum, and a swirl of creamy vanilla ice cream, this one was a bit on the sweeter side - but we didn't mind as it had a strong boozy punch emerging through. It was light, refreshing as hell, and perfect for the sunny Lankan weather.
The service was incredible! The staff was friendly and inviting which we really appreciate as we were the only local customers in there. They're very helpful with the orders and more than happy to assist you with your food preferences.
The restaurant itself seems like a bungalow flipped into a restaurant, so the atmosphere was calm, and had a very homey vibe with some appropriate mood music going on. Every table was well lit, which provided an ideal setting to take some Instagram-worthy food pictures.
Tusker Restaurant is quite popular among both local and tourist crowds, and it is one of THE places to drop by to satisfy your seafood cravings, if you're ever in Negombo. We highly recommend them.