Colombo Kitchen is an independently owned restaurant that opened in December 2019. It is in the main street of Worcester Park, a suburb of Sutton, which is technically within Greater London. It lies ten miles south west of Charing Cross, and was the home of writer H.G. Wells. Nearby New Malden is noted for its Korean restaurants, but here you can find Sri Lankan food in the form of Colombo Kitchen.
The place is brightly lit, with a display counter in the dining room where hoppers (bowl-shaped pancakes made from fermented rice flour and coconut milk) are prepared to order. The menu offered a range of Sri Lankan dishes on an a la carte basis. Sri Lankan cuisine draws on influences from nearby southern India as well as its colonial past (it was at times occupied by the Portuguese, Dutch and British) and its other Asian neighbours. There were a few token wines on offer, but I stuck to Lion beer from Sri Lanka. Popadoms were thin and crisp fried, though a touch greasy. Deep fried breadcrumbed prawns were pleasant, offered with a sweet chilli sauce (11/20). Fish patties had quite good pastry and were nicely spiced, coming with a tomato chutney that was useful as on its own the patties would have been a little dry (12/20).
The best dish of the evening was kingfish curry, made with coconut milk and spices. The fish was cooked nicely and the sauce was lovely, with an interesting blend of well-balanced spices (14/20). I also liked a yellow lentil and coconut curry, where the lentils avoiding the sogginess than can often happen with dhal (13/20). Devilled potatoes were lightly spiced and retained their texture quite well (12/20) while coconut rotis were pleasant though a little heavy in texture (11/20). The only poor dish was a fried pork one, where the pork was rather stringy and had somewhat dried out, but the waitress was nice about this and removed the dish from the bill without me asking when she noticed I wasn’t eating it after the first mouthful. A hopper pancake came with some condiments and was very good, freshly made and having nice texture (13/20).
Service was a bit stretched on this busy Saturday night, and it wasn’t always easy to catch the eye of waiting staff. However, everyone was friendly and once the service really got going the food turned up at a reasonable pace. The bill came to £44 per head with beer, cocktails and plenty of food. Overall I enjoyed Colombo Kitchen, and would return regularly if it was a bit nearer where I lived.