Lunch @ Kotuwa | Sri Lankan restaurant in Little India

March 31, 2022 in Sri Lankan by thywhaleliciousfay

Although I wasn’t impressed with my meal at Cloudstreet, I was still very much interested by what Sri Lanka-born and Australia-trained Rishi Naleendra is bringing to the food scene. Kotuwa, 1 of the 4 restaurants under his belt, is a casual Sri Lankan restaurant. Since I never had Sri Lankan cuisine before and was keen to know more about it, I felt it’s only appropriate to visit Kotuwa where food was presented in its most traditional manner.

Was glad my friends were open to trying a new cuisine. Reservation was made for a weekend lunch via their website.

And having no experience with Sri Lankan cuisine, we asked the staff to help us out with the food menu. And the meal already felt fun because the staff were really excited to make recommendation. We were starting on a high! I simply love it when staff are happy and passionate about what they are doing. The staff, who were also Sri Lankan, pondered hard before suggesting which dishes were best for us newcomers to try. I really appreciated the honesty in their recommendations. One of them said “You could easily get these 2 dishes outside. So I will recommend you to try this instead”.

And with that, my friends and I commenced our lunch with:-

1) Plain hopper, $5 (above, left)

2) Egg hopper, $7 (above, right)

3) Crab cutlet, $16 (above) – Sri Lankan style croquette, with spiced crab meat brandade.

4) Wambatu moju, $8 (above) – Sri Lankan spiced eggplant pickled in coconut vinegar.

5) Pol sambol, $8 (above) – Fresh shredded coconut with chili and lime.

6) Polos ambula, $18 (above) – Baby jackfruit cooked in coconut with toasted Sri Lankan spices.

7) Gova mallum, $14 (above) – Cabbage tempered with fresh coconut and turmeric.

8) Chicken kottu, $24 (above) – Chopped up rotti cooked with vegetables, eggs and gravy.

9) Chicken curry, $24 (above) – Chicken cooked in light coconut gravy.

10) Black pepper kithul pork, $26 (above) – Crispy pork belly with black pepper kithul caramel and guindilla pepper.

11) Watalappam tart, $16 (above) – Coconut custard with jaggery, pistachio, candied orange and spices.

12) Chocolate biscuit pudding, $16 (above) – Marie biscuits and Valrhona chocolate parfait.

Would I recommend Kotuwa? A definite yes. Am really glad my friends and I came as a group of 4 because it allowed us try many dishes from the menu. We would have loved to give the crab curry a try, which also came highly recommended by the staff, but we weren’t sure if we were keen on getting our hands dirty. Haha. But yes, my friends and I enjoyed every single dish. I came to learn Sri Lankan cuisine is all about the spices. So if one likes strongly flavoured food, Sri Lankan cuisine might just be up your alley!

Come with an open mind and ask the staff for recommendation if unsure. The only recommendation which we didn’t follow was ordering the hoppers instead of rice. Rice might be a better option to enjoy with the different dips. But we insisted on hopper because we haven’t had those before.

And somehow, I felt if I had visited Kotuwa first, I might have appreciated the dishes at Cloudstreet a bit better. Hmm…

2 Dickson Road, Wanderlust Hotel, Singapore
Website, 6970 7838
Overall: 8
Opening hours:-
Food/Beverage: 8
Sat – Sun : 11:00 – 15:00 (Lunch)
Ambience: 8
Wed – Sun : 18:00 – 22:00 (Dinner)
Value: 7
Service: 8
* Closed on Mon & Tues

Dinner @ Cloudstreet

February 10, 2022 in European, Sri Lankan by thywhaleliciousfay

When my non-foodie friend texted me in the midst of her meal that I have to check out Cloudstreet, I knew I had to. She even used caps for the words ‘have to’. Her exact words were “I’m at cloud street. omg u have to try it. Like HAVE TO.

That was December 2019. 1.5 years later… I finally got down to making the reservation, with the intent to celebrate a friend’s birthday.

However the fact that I think of myself as a foodie… I am embarrassed to say I haven’t tried all of Rishi Naleendra’s ventures yet. Cheek by Jowl? Yup. Cheek Bistro? Nope. Kotuwa? Nope. Fool (Kid you not, but it’s the name of a wine bar)? Nope. Cloudstreet. Errr… Nope. But I’ve already missed the boat for Cheek Bistro as it has since closed permanently.

Reservation was made for 7.30pm on a weekday evening. But even with 7.30pm, I made birthday girl wait due to meeting overrun. Oops. And it was only after I reached the restaurant that the staff led us from the waiting area to our designated table. I was bummed to realise we were not seated at the counter. When reservation was made, the reservation website did not mention there’ll be 2 types of seats. Else, I would have indicated our preference.

There’s no physical food menu. Only drinks menu. The food menu on Cloudstreet website is only a sample. Ie, indicative. After taking our drink orders, we commenced our dinner menu, $318 with:-

1) Dish #1 (above) – Grilled oyster, betel leaf, coconut and finger lime.

2) Dish #2 (above) – Fried quail egg and caviar.

3) Dish #3 (above) – Starting from the top, celeriac tartare (non-beef version for me) with tororo kombu, confit potato with smoked herring and egg yolk, dungeness crab with macadamia and chamomile jelly, and bergamot meringue with beetroot.

4) Dish #4 (above) – Grilled Jeju Island abalone with caviar. Not my first time watching staff pour warm consommé at the table, but it felt weird seeing the caviar slowly being submerged.


5) Dish #5 (above) – Sicilian red prawns in fermented tomato broth, and Spanish olive oil granita.

6) Dish #6 (above) – Pork jowl, river eel, pickled egg yolk and corn.

7) Dish #7 (above) – Sri Lankan curry of West Australian marron, millet, brown butter chutney, and coconut broth.


8) Dish #8 (above) – Sakura ebi, dhal and aioli.

9) Dish #9 (above) – Roasted monkfish, kerala style ishtu, bishop’s nose and smoked chicken fat.

10) Dish #10 (above) – Sri Lankan stout and liquorice bread.

11) Dish #11 (above) – Presa pork, garlic shoot terrine and kumquat.

I am one who likes to observe my surrounding, especially when at a restaurant. One can say I am very ‘kaypo’. Or in nicer words, I enjoy taking it all in. Haha. Worried that we were eating too slow since my girlfriend and I started our dinner later than most of the diners and we took longer to finish each course cause of our camera-eat-first habit (haha), I would consciously compare our speed against other tables’. I noticed we were on par with 2 groups. But imagine my surprise when I suddenly realised my girlfriend and I were the only ones left, halfway through our main dish. But mystery was solved when the staff told us to take our belongings and brought us to level 2 for our desserts.

12) Dish #12 (above) – Tasmanian honeycomb, starfruit, Ceylon silver needle and rosella.

13) Dish #13 (above) – Cheese platter.

14) Dish #14 (above) – Celtuce, yuzu, green chilli and yoghurt.

15) Dish #15 (above) – Fermented truffle, cascara, ragi and almond.

16) Dish #16 (above) – Petit fours. From top left in clockwise direction… Tamarind and pink peppercorn, vegemite on toast, koji and chestnut honey, blueberry and basil tart, coconut caramel, and palmyra and arrack pate de fruit.

17) Latte, $8 (above)

18) Birthday cake, Complimentary (above)

It was a very long meal. Arrived at 7.45pm, and only left Cloudstreet close to midnight. Intensively long! Haha. But my girlfriend and I had fun. Though I really should elaborate a little more on the ‘fun’ bit.

Food wise… Dishes which used familiar herbs and seasonings were good. While dishes prepared with less common and exotic seasonings were interesting. Not in a bad way. Just that it took us longer to (know how to) appreciate. But if this was a class for us to be exposed to and learn the less used (seasonings), it was a very expensive class. And the thing was… While food was good, it was not exceptional. The meal was missing that ‘wow’ factor. I was prepared to be swept off my feet especially given how highly raved Cloudstreet was, but I wasn’t.


Rather than the food, my girlfriend and I made our meal into an absolute fun time with our banter with the sommelier in addition to our own catch up. It was a meal with lots of laughter.

Though what really irked me was that there’s no information of their menu pricing. Not on their website, Instagram and reservation system. You know how some restaurants would mention the price when customers are making the reservation? My girlfriend and I literally jumped straight in(to the meal) since there was no physical menu too. Price was only known after the bill was presented. Ie, $318 per person (before GST and service charge).

Would I recommend Michelin-starred Cloudstreet? Well… Yes, but stick to lunch instead.

84 Amoy Street, Singapore
Website, 6513 7868
Overall: 7.5
Opening hours:-
Food/Beverage: 7
Fri – Sat : 12:00 – 13:30 (Lunch)
Ambience: 9
Tues – Sat : 18:00 – 21:00 (Dinner)
Value: 6
Service: 8
* Closed on Mon & Sun