Yaal has been a steady favourite on my part. They're always crowded with families, hungry individuals, groups of people and so on. Their menu might seem tight, but they've got so many different options to order. You're bound to find something satiating regardless of how picky you are.
Their menu is huge. They've got veg and non-veg dishes so you won't be left out. We decided to go ahead with a portion of the Parota with Kuruma (Rs. 180), the Prawn Idiyappam Biriyani (Rs. 630) and a Chicken Kottu (Rs. 520).
The parota is phenomenal, with its buttery, flakey demeanour and wonderfully crispy spots all throughout, amplifying the crunch factor. The small side of veg kuruma contained the usual beans, potato and carrots: all soaking in a rich and thick gravy. Get this as an appetiser between you and a friend. You'll be left craving for more, but it's actually a great teaser to keep you excited for the rest of your meal.
I've consistently had their Prawn Idiyappam Biriyani up until the last three years or so- and they've always managed to keep up with quality. This time when I tried it, it was still the same as the first time I did.
You're served a whole pot that's filled to the brim with chopped string hoppers. The string hoppers are infused with a myriad spices from cardamom and cumin to fiery chili, giving it that robust, red hue. Chopped shallots, leeks, and carrots make an appearance along with lots of egg and tomato.
As for the prawns, you get about 8-10 of 'em , well seasoned and chunky. When you're forced to dig for the prawns you'll realise that they can definitely afford to be a bit more generous, but alas- you can only have so much of a good thing, no?
The Chicken Kottu was alright. Not splendiferous, nor gastronimically delightful, it was just alright. The price tag is a bit high, given you could get better kottu options from Plaza or whatever for the same, if not lower price.
It's chopped strips of godhamba roti peppered with a whole load of chopped onions and onion leaves. The occasional diced tomato piece will show itself. In addition to dry hunks of boiled chciken being present, you also get the usual egg bits as well. Overall it was good, just nothing special.
This is a disastrous photo of their Masala Chai. I can't even look at it, on account of how hideous it looks. It doesn't do the beverage even a mild bit of justice. Let me explain.
For Rs. 200 you're getting a glass of the best, heavily potent, thick, velvety masala chai for MILES. It's incredibly rich, with layers of flavour and is the perfect accompaniment for when you want a small burst of energy. We recommend you get one and sip on it throughout your meal- it works as a palate cleanser, too.
Okay look, I'll admit I wasn't very focused on taking a lot of pictures on account of sheer gluttony. This is a disgusting photograph of their ambience from like, 5 years ago...
From the paint to the furniture, nothing much has changed. They still have their aluminium/plastic chairs at the ground floor. The upper floor is the air-conditioned section and will cost an extra 10% on your bill to dine there. Take it, it's nice and quiet upstairs.
A lot of commenters have stated that the place isn't very clean etc. I agree, their cleanliness leaves much to be desired, but keep in mind that they aren't a posh restaurant.
Service is fast and straightforward. There is this one guy though, who'll try to woo you with his charm and exaggerated eye contact/questions. Just ignore him and he'll leave you alone. If you're too uncomfortable, tell the management.
Everyone else is friendly and polite.
Yaal has steadily maintained their quality and food over the years.
Yaal Restaurant down Marine Drive still serves some very tasty and not-too-pricey food, and their crab curry is still good - though it's their biriyani that blew us away.
Another day another crab. Today I hit up Yaal Restaurant - the cleaner brighter better ventilated rival of my beloved Yarl Eat House - for my fix.
සිංහල උණුඋණුවෙ දුම් ද දා… ඒ මදිවට සුවඳේ බෑ අප්පා. මික්ස් ෆ්රයිඩ් රයිස් එක නම් දැක්කාම කටට කෙළ උනන සීන් එකක් තිබ්බෙ. මට්න් බිරියානි එකෙත් මට්න් කෑලි තොගයයි.
සිංහල අදත් කකුළුවෙක්. අද මම ගියේ මගේ ආදරණීය යාල් ඊට් හවුස්ට වඩා පිරිසිදු, ආලෝකවත්, හොඳින් වාතාශ්රය ඇති යාල් අවන්හලට.