What we had
A treasure of a rooftop restaurant
Zylan is a beautiful boutique hotel down Rosmead Place that apparently started out in 2011. This stunning luxury villa has actually been out of everyone’s radars (and it shouldn’t be!). The building structure and its interior is art in itself. The common spaces and the restaurant on the second floor is furnished with attention to detail, and it really is a hidden gem of a place (plus, it’s BYOB).
Not to confuse you, but Zylan’s restaurant is actually called Zen. We did go that night with the idea of doing a review of ‘Zen’, but we then realised that we were provided with two menus; Zylan and Zen. Zylan was a multi-cuisine menu whereas Zen was authentically Japanese. We wanted to review both menus for you, and this part 1 of a 2 series review of the place.
Mint and Pineapple Frappe – LKR 400
The Mint and Pineapple Frappe is a concoction of pineapple juice, lime juice and mint. Although it sounded refreshing, it didn’t really live up to its expectations. The drink was slightly more sour than expected.
Pink Virgin Mojito – LKR 400
We really enjoyed the Pink Virgin Mojito. This was a mix of watermelon juice, king coconut and mint. The watermelon was thick and the king coconut and mint gave it a tropical punch.
Vegetable Spring Rolls – LKR 450
We were served 4 Vegetable Spring Rolls fried till golden brown. The rolls were crunchy and were packed with thinly sliced carrots, cabbage and more.
Buffalo Wings – LKR 450
Are Buffalo Wings supposed to be really really cold? Cause these ones were. The buffalo sauce wasn’t a perfect match but it was spicy and flavorful. However the wings were very cold and almost like it was just taken out of a fridge.
Hot Butter Cuttlefish – LKR 650
As a HBC enthusiast, I’ve been on the lookout for Hot Butter Cuttlefish at almost every restaurant I go to. If I see it on the menu, I will definitely try it out. The HBC here was actually pretty good. As should great HBC be, it was crunchy on the outside and the outer layer packed itself enough spice. For LKR 650, the quantity wasn’t questionable either. Didn’t match up to the god of HBC that Barracudda serves, but it was close.
Chicken Sweet Corn Soup – LKR 450
What I am also, is a Chicken and Sweet Corn Soup enthusiast.The bowl of soup was enough for one and fairly meagre in size as opposed to the soup served at Tsing Tao – which I will hold as the benchmark of all Chicken and Sweet Corn Soups. The soup was loaded with veggies and spring onions and was fairly limited on the egg drops and the chicken. It wasn’t a very thick soup but the excess of other ingredients in it as opposed to chicken or egg, or corn for that matter, gave it a rank down.
Pesto Chicken – LKR 950
The Pesto Chicken was detailed to be a “Succulent grilled marinated chicken topped with fresh pesto and served with mashed potato and mixed salad”.Straight up, the Pesto Chicken dish was a 1/5. Here’s every element broken down; the chicken itself was dry. It was so dry that two bites into the chicken, we were disgusted by it and we had to ask the waiters to take the dish away. The pesto sauce over the chicken was neither aesthetically not gastronomically pleasing. The mashed potato scoop (that almost looked like a scoop of vanilla ice cream) was not the right texture. The mash was not creamy, at all. The mixed salad wasn’t fresh either. The leaves weren’t crunchy and it had no dressing.
Lamb Chops – LKR 1650
We had a better experience with the Lamb Chops than we did with the Pesto Chicken. The grilled lamb chops were served with fat, severely over fried potato wedges and mustard jus. The meat was tender and the flavours of rosemary and other herbs had infused well. A downfall was the sauce served on the side with both the Pesto Chicken and the Lamb Chops. In a couple of minutes, the topmost layer of the sauce hardened and the consistency turned grainy.
Chicken Fried Rice – LKR 550
What we learned out of this whole adventure was to stick to the Chinese Menu at Zylan. They don’t do the whole Multi-Cuisine thing too well. The fried rice was pretty good. For LKR 550, it’s safe to say that it’s plenty for 2. Since Sri Lankan-Chinese fried rice is now a thing, this one was some kind of fusion dish too.
Kung Pao Chicken – LKR 750
The Kung Pao Chicken was greeted with high hopes….. that let us down. The chicken was very succulent and the boneless meat meant that it was easier to consume it. What let us down was the overpowering quantity and taste of the sauce. It almost felt like they wrapped the diced chicken in tomato ketchup.
Stir-fried Vegetables in Oyster Sauce – LKR 450
This is one dish I will most definitely go back for. A-plenty of stir fried veggies were tossed in a thick oyster sauce. It was your average Sri-Lankan-Chop-Suey, but better!
One thing we have to note is their terrible service. We’d give it a -1/5 if we could. We had arrived at Zylan just after the rain that night had seized. Since we requested to be seated outside, we expected them to clean the tables up a little bit and lay the cushions on the chairs to accommodate us. But no, we had to call them out again and request they do this for us. Complaint #2 was also their inefficiency in terms of responding the requests. From the time it took for our dishes to come, to the time taken to bring my sister a glass of warm water, to how they struggled to lay the plates and cutlery on our table, it really seemed like the staff lacked experience – which is a bummer.
Have you tried the rooftop restaurant at Zylan yet? Let us know what you think of it in the comments below! Is there anything we’ve missed?
Tip: Just stick to the Chinese Menu.