Friday, June 25, 2010

Coco Veranda Coffee House Colombo - Restaurant in Colombo Sri Lanka

You Should Coco

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Paying more than LKR 200 for coffee at a coffee shop seems insane to me. For a few (hundred) rupees more, you can drink a beer on the Galle Face terrace. Given this choice, I’d always go for the more drunken option.

So, when Coco Verandah opened up on Ward Place about half a km from Odel, I thought it just another addition to the multitude of coffee shops with vaguely interesting names, lookalike ambience and average food.

We were passing by on a weekday, though, and we were hungry. Hungry enough that we couldn’t last all the way to Odel. So we dropped in and, avoiding the coffee, ordered the burgers and a sandwich instead.

Both were really good. The burger was just right – only the bacon was missing – and the chicken sandwich – teriyaki, I think – was really the first proper teriyaki chicken sandwich we’ve had here.

Service was a little confused – the cheese I asked and paid for on my burger was forgotten – but apologetic and friendly when the omission was pointed out. The design is slightly confused and cluttered as if they began with a coffee shop and ended up with a restaurant.

But the chairs are leather bound and cool to sit on in the evening. And, given that our meal cost under LKR 400 per item, it was easy to overlook any minor shortcomings.

Coffee shop food is usually bland, unexciting drivel. It’s as if the owners of Barista, Coffee Bean and the rest of the watering holes for Colombo socialites all got into a meeting and said “How can we get rid of everything that’s interesting about food, make it blander, smother it in mayo and sell it at exhorbitant prices?”

Thankfully, Coco Veranda seems to have avoided this. If you must have coffee in the land of tea, Coco Verandah’s a good place for that, too. But, whatever happens, try the burger. You’ll have to listen to Hi magazine style discussions of people’s weekend shopping in Singapore and what Kolu thought of the dress she was wearing at this exclusive function that only a few people were invited to, darling and see air kisses being exchanged. But it’ll be worth it.

Restaurant Name: Coco Verandah
Address: 32 Ward Pl (somewhere between Kynsey Rd and Lipton Circus... :)

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  1. try their butter cake - divine. Its a proper lemon bundt cake, but the staff hadn't ever heard the word 'bundt' by the looks of it, cos they offered me a strange look and a polite "you mean the butter cake ma'am?"

  2. Thank you so much much for your feed back. We are so glad that you love our burgers and sandwiches. Do apologies about the cheese!!!

    In regards to the coffee, we get the finest Filicori coffee from Italy. Do come and try it one day.

    Pls do tell us how to improve and serve you better.

    Can we share ur comments on coco facebook??
    Thank u once again.



  3. Coco-You're more than welcome to share this on FB.
    Anon-And I will try the dessert next time...

  4. ooh, i love this place. it's become a weekly lunch joint for us now. the death by chocolate cake is fab, as is their caramel frappe. you'd think that 400 bucks is a bit much for a drink, but the size of the drink makes up for it.

    and the service! we've always got good, friendly service here. the staff are friendly and none of their suggestions for food have so far gone wrong. (yes, i'm a bit of a coco verandah groupie =)

  5. I work nearby and have been there a few times with the office crowd, but our experience has not been the best. While we love the coffee (overpriced though it may be) and Death by Chocolate, the eclairs on two occasions were dry and disappointing. Since then we only have coffee. However it looks like you have a loyal following, so good luck!

  6. A loyal follow of all Barista's and the unpretentious Coffee Bean outlet at Pellawatte, I have been very disappointed wit Coco Veranda (though on my first visit, the death by chocolate was deadly delicious, and I thought then, this will make this place rock).

    The dry food, snobbish service, and exorbitant prices are the ideal mixture for disaster. Though CV is just a stone throw away from my office, I prefer making the extra miles to the welcoming arms of a Barista or Coffee Bean.

    Coco needs to get many variables right before it can hold a candle to the service quality, food and coffee of other "watering holes".

    Ditto on the choice of getting drunk over a CV coffee. Possibly, a drunken experience of CV may turn out to be brilliant (just a thought)

  7. MM, what did you expect to find on Ward Place? This whole area is one of pretense over substance. Even the people who live here are among the most irrelevant and superficial in the city. Stick to "tying one on" at your local gin-mill and you'll be a far happier person.

  8. The salads are great - plan on having one today as well. With coffee, and a healthy smoked salmon salad your bill works out to about 700-800 Rupes which is at the higher end of moderate but its a comfortable, relaxing ambience that adds to the tab as well. Like all things service related in this country there needs to be more attentive and engaging staff though.

  9. I was once here, and didn't like their hospitality. I was asked to move from table to table saying it was reserved. anyway there were no reservation board placed on the table.

  10. Finally it's great to see Coco Veranda become Vegan friendly!

    The Soy caramel latte which I had both yesterday and day before are the best I've had in Colombo!

    Also the Chef was kind enough to customize the veg spaghetti dish and make it vegan friendly by taking out the cheese and butter. Even though the staff found my requirement amusing it tasted great! Hats off to the staff for improvising to provide customer satisfaction!

    Do hope you will add more vegan treats in future. Possibly a carrot and orange cake without the dairy which is one of the best vegan treats out there!

    Keep it up Coco!

    Danuke Kuruppu

  11. Dear Coco Veranda Owners,

    My self and my wife went to your outlet at Crescat on the 14th Monday to have a coffee and something to eat we ordered 2 moca lates and 1 slice of cheese cake and 1 slice of orio cake.The cheese cake which i consumed was spoiled and the orio cake was tasting of soap i told the server at the counter to have a taste as well and he also agreed that it tasted like soap!! I have since gotten very ill with a stomach virus out of food poisoning at your store and only today after medication recovered.It is appalling to know that a reputed place such as yours should server untested and unhealthy deserts to customers!!, my wife thank god did not get infected as she did not eat the spoiled food that day!! this type of food should not be served to anyone what if kids on that day have had this food they would have been hospitalized. this is very very bad indeed!!!.So from that day forthwith i will never recommend your store at any location to anyone. THIS IS VERY BAD !!!!! PEOPLE BE WANED DO NOT GO TO COCO VERANDA AS YOU MIGHT SUFFER THAT SAME FATE AS I HAVE!!!

    A Very Dissatisfied costumer!!!!

  12. I haven't had an experience with food gone off like the unfortunate customer above me, but your service definitely leaves a lot to be desired. My husband and I frequent the Ward Place outlet at least 3 times a week- sometimes more- because I work in the vicinity. We even study there. And yet we weren't even told about the loyalty card- after 3 YEARS of being a regular customer.
    We found out about the card from a friend- who was equally shocked that we weren't informed about the loyalty card. I subsequently filled in an application- to which I never got a reply- and when I inquired about it, the nice people behind the counter pulled out a box of applications. Mine wasn't in the box.
    Needless to say I haven't stepped foot in CV again. I'd much rather my time and money at Baristas/Cioconat/Cup Cafe- Far less pretentious but far warmer and more welcoming.
    A very very dissatisfied customer.