Breakfast is all important fare if you’re Sri Lankan. We take our first meal of the day very seriously and if it isn’t fulfilling, the meals of the rest of the day are going to amount to nothing. In terms of the number of restaurants and cafes swarming the city, Colombo has plenty of options to offer but when it comes to a hearty morning meal that tastes as good as it looks and is priced just right, places are hard to find.
Rare at Residence may have reputation for fine-dining fare with equally fine prices, they’re very quickly becoming the rave for their newest breakfast menu. Keeping in mind the importance of quality over quantity and price, none of the listings are priced over Rs. 900 and include some breakfast choices you definitely won’t find elsewhere.
Creating the menu definitely took its course of time as the team behind the restaurant and management wanted to ensure they got each item of the menu just right. Whether it’s the eggs Benedict or the house-made granola, they’ve harnessed the dishes down to the tee with exceptional flavour, precise technique and great quality.
A morning cuppa joe is important and the menu consists of both hot and cold drinks such as lattes, cappuccinos, teas, smoothies and milkshakes. Their Baker’s Corner includes house-made baked goodies; croissants, muffins and doughnuts. To kick off the tasting experience, we placed an order of the hot latte with baileys and hot chocolate, and a plate of the muffins and croissants.
As someone who loves the typical chocolate muffin, I thought it was only fair that I’d try the pineapple and cinnamon one as well as the wild berries muffin. The fruitiness of the pineapple thankfully wasn’t too overpowering and it was well balanced with the touch of spice from the cinnamon in it. The wild berry muffin on the other hand was quite delicious, although I wouldn’t have minded more fruit chunks in it. The croissants blew my mind away. They were light and airy, crispy on the top and soft on the insides. Almonds croissants are a tough feat to get by; but the creamy compote that oozed out with each bite was truly a delight.
The main menu includes a bowl of porridge; a blend of oats, barley, almonds, organic quinoa, flax seeds, cashew, walnuts, cinnamon, served with honey and poached pear. If you happen to be a someone who is conscious about eating clean and healthy, this is certainly a good option. I’d also recommend the breakfast sundae that is made of house-made granola, mixed berries, honey, curd and mint. Every crunchy bite topped off with the curd and honey was quite expectedly delicious. I wasn’t too keen on the cinnamon and oatmeal pancakes because I happen to prefer plain ones with chocolate chips, but a bite of this certainly changed my mind. The pancakes has the right amount of fluff and flavour, and the topping which was a ‘pani’ apple compote really pulled it together; another great healthy breakfast option.
Any French toast fans out there? Rare’s version of this favourite includes cinnamon, passion fruit, caramelized banana, pure honey, ‘lovi’ and ‘pani’ apple compote; a burst of fruity goodness with each mouthful. There’s also the usual additions – a plate of seasonal fresh fruits, eggs any style you’d prefer from gruffly scrambled ones with topped off with feta and even a typical spicy omelette. Sausages, bacon, chicken, extra cheese and so on can be added upon request.
The rare version of an eggs Benedict was of an toasted English muffin, capers, pickled shallots, hollandaise sauce, to which you can add smoked salmon as well. Unlike most Sri Lankans, I do love my runny eggs and breaking into the meal was pure satisfaction. The hollandaise sauce was perfection. The Manner crab received a similar reaction, as it included poached eggs, avocado, tomatoes, micro greens, served on a sourdough toast. If you’d prefer something slightly different, try the crispy eggs which includes soft boiled eggs coated in local spices, asparagus cream, toasted English muffin. The asparagus sauce adds a unique touch of flavour to the entire dish. The bagel with bacon, scrambled eggs, micro greens, cream cheese, caramelized onions, and the cured wild salmon, avocado picked onions, dill, crème fresh, potatoes were two of my favourites as well; both dishes had a fresh flavourful bite.
If you’re someone who can’t seem to get away from the local palette of breakfast options, you won’t be disappointed; there’s kiribath and pol roti, with fish curry, chicken ambulthiyal, dhal, lunu miris, and assorted sambols.