Love thy neighbours food. And as long as your neighbour makes good food, that can work out. That is the case with the Indian cuisine in Sri Lanka. They are packed with flavour, twists and colours that would make you fall in love with them. From streetside saivar kadey to fine dining giants, there are plenty of places in Colombo that you can grab some dosa or a steaming hot pot of biriyani.
So here we take a look at a few of the places that you can enjoy some Indian food, and really good ones at that.
Dindigul Thalappakatti Restaurant
With an interesting and albeit rocky story behind the name which you can read here, Dindigul whips up some Indian food that pays homage to their roots in Tamilnadu, with a unique cooking style. What you get here probably won't resemble the Hydrabadi Indian food that we are used to, but still, it will not fail to please your tastebuds.
They carry an extensive list of South Indian dishes and is a good option if you are on the lookout for veg-friendly dining. Sudarshana Veg does a veg biriyani that will actually put the usual chicken biriyani in Colombo to shame. The masala infused, long grain basmati will make you not miss chicken flavour at all.
Focusing on Noth Indian cuisine Chana's is known for its excellent biriyani. Since the place is not the biggest there is, you are better off sticking to take away. Regardless, you are in for a reliable experience with Chana’s take on Indian food.
Doing the saivar scene in a classy, clean and with a utilitarian design, they serve up some authentic Indian food like ghee roast dosa. They do a darn good job, so chances are you won’t miss the meats here.
Indian Chaat Corner
This is an actual house, run by a family that does an excellent job in delivering some good chaat at an affordable price. Their plates of chaat are quite good, and we are impressed by the biriyani too. While the service might not have the top-notch professionalism, the food is more than enough to make up for it.
Chola Authentic Indian Restaurant
Chola Authentic has an extensive list of Indian fare – Noth Indian, South Indian, Chettinad, Mughalai, and Chaat Dishes to name a few. Even though the prices are a bit on the expensive side, the portion size can easily accommodate two.
Shanmugas offers a varied and extensive vegetarian menu with the usual classics and it stands as one of the best South Indian restaurants in Colombo. While not the cheapest, they have really flavoursome food that will make you want to go back for more. You can almost always find them bustling with customers. So, we recommend making a reservation before you go.
With moody lights and oriental music, stepping into here is reminiscent of an Indian fairy tale as we remember. Agra is good for a casual meeting or a date or just to enjoy a quiet meal by yourself albeit at a price. While the service wasn't the fastest there is, we enjoyed our time and think you will too.
The Mango Tree
Boasting authentic North Indian fare, Mango Tree is a place that is usually frequented by foreigners. Their prices usually fall on the expensive side of the spectrum. You can easily get the athletic Indian flavours here with plenty of spices that would make your meal more exciting.
Mathura needs no fancy introduction and is well-known for their veg-friendly Indian food. Their veg biriyani is a real winner and the masala dosa is equally impressive.
Maharaja Palace is one of the few fine dining Indian restaurants in Colombo. Sporting an extravagant ambience and a price tag to match, this is the place to drop by if you are in the need to have some Indian food like classy cats.
Chutneys (Cinnamon Grand)
Chutneys have a neatly divided menu between the Karnataka, Andhra Pradesh, Tamil Nadu, Kerala – the four South Indian states and offers both vegetarian and non-vegetarian. They have impeccable service, alongside the impressive modern ambience with quality food that delivers an authentic vibe.
Navratna has a cool, calm, quiet space with a Mughal-esq ambience that wins points easily. Food is skillfully made with the good old spices bursting through and have the tasteful flavours to match. Their efficient, friendly and attentive service is the cherry-on-the-top.
DineInn does value for money. Their portion size and flavours will leave you satisfied. It's a house flipped into a restaurant, which is a nice touch and certainly adds to the home-like experience. The only thing to watch out for is the parking space which is pretty limited.
With spacious seating and good service, they serve up some food that charms both your eyes and tastebuds. If you are looking for a semi-fine dining experience, Indian Summer should be on your list. While not the cheapest around, they've got your usual meat-centred specialities, rotis, biriyani and a variety of curries.