Wednesday, 1 February 2012

New Siam, Colombo Airport, Sri Lanka

Apparently explaining you're entering a country despite only transitting for a few hours between flights, to go and eat in the cheaper, more interesting restaurant in the arrivals part of the airport is not a good enough explanation for some passport officials. The fact that English wasn't the man's first language (though he was very good at it) didn't help. I'm pretty sure he had understood what  Ihad  said, then decided that it was too ridiculous to be right  leading him to conclude that he  must have made a mistake. After one or two more attempts I decided to just say I was going to walk to get some fresh air; that seemed to do the trick.

Thankfully all the effort was worth it. In the restaurant on the other side awaited a series of spicy curries tangy chutneys and way too many carbs consumed over two enormous and unnecessary portions. The whole lot came to about six pound each. A particular note was a good spicy chicken curry and a coconut flavoured dahl. Sadly they didn't have any egg hoppers something I'd like to my previous trip through Colombo. These are a kind of crispy savoury pancake with an egg cracked inside, the batter a slightly sharp flavour and they are really very delicious. Instead they offered stringhoppers and thinking maybe somewhat similar I ordered two. They are no similar at all. What stringhoppers actually consist of is hopper dough shredded and then boiled like noodles into a kind of bird-nest shape. The result is extremely stodgy and when you have already eaten three or four portions (albeit quite small) of different curries on top of an enormous mound of red rice they're pretty superfluous and actually not that pleasant.

Apart from that the meal was great and the service extremely friendly. I can't recommend crossing through passport control enough for this lovely restaurant, which though it looks like a fairly basic canteen is a cut above almost every other airport restaurant I've been in (there were some ribs in Texas once that still make me misty eyed). Admittedly that doesn't sound like a high praise so I'll just leave you with the message with any Siam is good and should eat there if you get a chance.

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