I have officially NEVER had Sri Lankan food, until last Tuesday. I loved it! It's unlike anything I've ever tasted. The flavours are so unique. It's often compared to South Indian food because they also uses a lot of coconut but it's way spicier! I've read that it's some of the spiciest cuisines in the world. Our server told us that their mild is a medium in Indian food. So we got everything mild except for the fish curry, which she made medium by default. And it was spicy enough for us. But I'm thinking to move up to "medium" level next time! She was amazing because she took care of us once she knew it was our first time there and eating Sri Lankan food. She gave us a nice sampling of great dishes to share.
We started with some great appetizers, these fried patties and fish balls. We did the whole meal vegetarian and fish because Ama doesn't eat meat and it was fantastic. We then had 3 vegetables with rice, fish curry, this insane Dahl dish which was lentils stewed in coconut milk. That was one of our favourites! The other huge hit was this dish called Kotthu Roti. It was kind of the pad thai of Sri Lankan food we were calling it. They say its a Sri Lankan road-side speciality prepared from doughy pancakes shredded and stir fried with vegetables, onions and egg. I could eat it every day! For dessert we had the fried bananas and ice cream it was delicious! It's byob so we grabbed this great spanish white wine next door at this cute wine shop next door. It went perfectly with the food.
The food and experience was great. The place is small and dark so you feel like you've stepped out of busy New York and into a calm and cozy place. It would be hard to go there with more than 4 people. I can't wait to go back or get take-away (no delivery) because it's right in my hood.
91 1st Avenue (btwn 5th + 6th St)
New York, NY