The Sushi Bar (Samurai) in Rajagiriya is known for their excellent craftsmanship in Japanese food, but this time around, we're in love with their Sri Lankan menu. Known as Rampe, Sushi Bar Samurai's take on Sri Lankan fare is fantastic, and we're completely satisfied with our experience here.
It's an extensive menu, assorted with a whole heap of curries and rice-based varieties, which reflect the rich culinary styles of Sri Lanka. They've got set menus for lunchtime, which are available for dine-in and takeaway, and we opted to the former. However, if you're choosing the latter, it's less expensive.
This is the Mutton Lunch Pack (Rs. 991) - comprised of White Rice, Kiri Ala (Taro Roots) Curry, Dhal Curry, Mutton Curry, Stir-fried Green Beans, Mallum, Pol Sambol, Papadum, Fried Paprika andFried Dried Fish.
Every element in this spread was well-executed. The dhal was full of curry kicks, the Kiri Ala was hella creamy and milky, while the mallum provided a fresh crunch. We enjoyed catching a whiff of fenugreek in green beans, and the pol sambol added the much-needed limey, spicy zest to the meal.
The undeniable star of the meal was the mutton curry. Lavished with an abundance of finest spices that our culinary fare is well known for, it was a spicy, aromatic affair. The meat was slightly chewy to the bite, but not overly so, and had less fat.
We also tried the combination of Themparadu Buth (Rs. 350), Red Fish Curry (Rs. 650) and Cashew Nut Curry (Rs. 800). The rice was nicely tempered on a wok, with the addition of caramelised onions and curry leaves.
The colour of the gravy is enough testament to how rich this Red Fish Curry is. It was a treat to the taste buds, as much as it was for the eyes. Much like the mutton curry, this one also carried a good dose of spices a subtle tang, given by the Malabar tamarind. The fish was fresh, well-cooked, and absolutely delicious, all thanks to having absorbed the flavours of the gravy.
Cashew Nut Curry is a favourite of many, and this is one excellent version of that. So creamy, wonderfully milky, with a light tempered touch to it. Plus, there was plenty of cashew nuts for two.
This Caramel Pudding is a part of their lunch set menu. With a gorgeous brown hue, its caramel layer was on point, which gave just the right amount of sweetness to the milky base with every bite.
As for drinks, we got a Virgin Piña Colada (Rs. 550) and an Avocado Smoothie (Rs. 600). Both of them were done very well. The ensemble of coconut cream and pineapple was well balanced in the Piña Colada, while the Avocado Smoothie was packed with the promised fruit.
It's the same space as the Sushi Bar Samurai, so you can order some of your favourite Japanese dishes alongside the Sri Lankan treats. Air-conditioned and well maintained, it's quite spacious too, easily enough to accommodate around 50 customers at a time. Suits well for family-style dining.
It's one solid pick for Sri Lankan fare. They seem to do it with a lot of passion and care, while ensuring the authenticity of the flavours. Prices may seem a bit expensive at a glance, but in fact, they're on par with similar high-end Sri Lankan restaurants in the city. We recommend!
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