What we had
‘Come to the little flower shop, and ask for Fern!’ That’s the slogan of this newly opened, fancy little restaurant, tucked away in a corner down Sir Mohammad Macan Makar Mawatha.
At the entrance all you can see is a ‘flower shop’ and once you enter through the door you are led to a flight of stairs. As we made our way upstairs, we were quite bewildered by the décor of old portraits, elegant candlesticks, newspaper designs and large mirrors together with dim lighting.
One of the few speakeasy bars in Sri Lanka, the concept behind it is to recreate the period of prohibition which took place in the US in the 1920’s. The place has a vintage feel and offers up some unique décor, which would make you want to walk around and explore the place before you sit down to dine. Even the washrooms were quite fancy! Kudos to creativity indeed!
They offer a variety of spirits and cocktails, so we decided to give their ‘signature cocktails’ a try!
Mr. Miyagi – LKR 1500
This was a blend of botanical gin, tonic, fresh lime and yuzu (Japanese mandarin purée), which brings out a tangy taste. It was super refreshing and could be recommended as a good starting cocktail.
Where’s Wally Bastian – LKR 1500
One of their specialties, served in a glass that looked like a light bulb. This constituted of a mix of Ceylon arrack, king coconut water, lime, bitters (the zest), and sugarcane. If you are into stronger cocktails, this would be perfect. For me, however, the taste of arrack was a bit too much.
Since they opened quite recently, they don’t have a large variety of dishes, but they do offer up some interesting dishes which we couldn’t wait to try.
Serai chicken wings – LKR 750
Although the portion was smaller than expected, the wings were delicious. They were tossed with a lemongrass and palm sugar infused sauce and thus were quite sweet and not at all spicy. The meat was tender, and succulent, and the sauce gave it a great flavor.
Miso glazed salmon – LKR 2,200
A class dish! To begin with, it was plated beautifully and was very appealing to the eye. The large fillet of salmon was placed on a bed of garlic green beans and baked pumpkin with a glazing of coconut foam. The fish was baked to perfection and the coconut foam provided a unique, delicious taste along with the veggies. Incredibly amazing!
Caramelized mango with candied bacon and lemon curd – LKR 650
Definitely a unique dish! I personally have never thought of combining mango with bacon before, but it tasted nothing short of great. The candied bacon was crispy and sweet along with the rich sweetness of the mango. The lemon curd gave a hint of sourness, which provided a distinctive taste.
Ask for Fern is a pretty laid-back place with a touch of history, to enjoy drinks with family or friends, and have a good dinner. If you are looking for new restaurants around Colombo which are somewhat out of the ordinary, this is a must-visit!
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