A relaxed and casual atmosphere to enjoy authentic Japanese food.
Within the grand colonial ambience of the Dutch Hospital Precinct is an assemblage of different culinary identities. Ikoi Tei is the Japanese imprint on the complex. Push the glass doors, which are anonymous, like of any other restaurant clustered around the courtyard, and you enter an atmosphere characteristic of Nippon.
High on the walls are maps and prints of Nagasaki. From tall ceilings globular, dim yellow lights hang, each light-trapped in a black iron enclosure resembling an astrolabe, creating a smart, vintage elegance. There are plump cushions if you like to be snug, or you can sit with a view of the courtyard. Lounge music provides euphonious accompaniment.
The hallmark and motif of the restaurant are the stylised sea waves so dear to Japanese art. They are on the walls as well as on the menu. Perhaps they nurture an appetite because the cuisine of this country is tied up so closely with the sea: from weeds to a huge array of fish.
After a deep glass of pineapple juice and Madeira Red, a plate of prawn rolls materialised on our table. They had the elemental taste of Japan, with the rice, the seaweed, the prawns and the glittering orange roe. The Chicken Teriyaki itself had a deep marine flavour, a delicious salty sauce covering it. The Chicken Katsudon was crispy and savoury, with creamy eggs. They have a selection of unusual ice creams including the warm, delicious tempura ice cream.
The vast menu at Ikoi Tei means you need almost never repeat an experience. It is also a rare venue in Colombo where one can relish the flavours and theatrics of Teppanyaki.
Reservations are advised: (+94 11) 244 1275
|Venue name:||Ikoi Tei by WIP|
2 Dutch Hospital Shopping Precinct
|Opening hours:||Daily, 11am-3pm and 6pm-11pm|