30 September 2009

Sigiri

SRI LANKA

Sigiri has been around for a few years, but I hope I can be forgiven for never trying it. The Sri Lankan restaurants on Staten Island (especially the amazing New Asha) have always left the ones in the East Village or "Curry Hill" sub par. And Sigiri is right next door on 1st Avenue to the red pepper Christmas light capital of the world, not exactly a location that instills confidence.

But this is definitely Manhattan's finest, serving quality food in a comfortable setting. The quality of food is very high, with a nod also given to presentation. The ceilings and light fixtures are decorated with rice scoops and give the place a hip reference to the countryside while fitting right into the modern styles of the neighborhood.


A good test of any Sri Lankan is their dahl vade ($4.25, above), a standard snack that here was excellently crunchy and spiced. These lentil cakes make great appetizers or snacks to take with you on a busy day. We also ordered the vegetable spring rolls ($5.50, below) which satisfied more through the spice and crispiness of the wrapper than the contents.


For an entree, we shared the string hopper kotthu ($11.50, below) which according to the menu is normally eaten on the street. That's where all the best food is anyways. The dish is pasta chunks stir-fried with vegetables and an egg, served with a side of red curry sauce to liven it up if desired.

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