What we had
A cleverly curated menu of Lankan cocktails
Isso has introduced a brand-new, bar space on the top floor of their property! While they have an excellent selection of booze, whether you are after champagne or arrack, we were excited to try the signature cocktails on the menu! And so, we ordered one of each.
(It was Wednesday. We needed a pick-me-up to pull us out of the midweek slump.)
They are all priced at LKR. 990, however, you can upgrade certain cocktails from VAT9 arrack to the more high-end Ceylon arrack which brings it up to LKR. 1,490.
This one has a nice mixing ratio of alcohol and juice. Citrus fans gather round! While the whole cocktail revolves around a citrus theme, the top notes of coconut and gin hit you upon first sip. Combined with vanilla and lime juice, this cocktail is not your ordinary mouthful of orange flavour with alcohol.
This one is one of the sweeter concoctions on the menu. While you are left with a pleasant aftertaste of arrack, this one isn’t anything exceptional, with a milder citrus taste than Hiriketiya. I did like the fact that my tongue was coated in bee’s honey after each sip.
Ambarella achcharu in a mouthwatering cocktail! This was garnished with an avocado that makes for the perfect snack that enhanced the flavour too. Yala is extremely sour and is best drunk in sips because of its strong flavour. Coupled with the sharp kick of salt and pepper around the rim, this one will knock you off your feet!
While it is similar to Kollupitiya, this one has stronger citrus notes and is garnished with salt and pepper around the rim. The flavours elevate each other perfectly. A round of these would make for the perfect Instagram picture on a girl’s night out!
I watched the bartender prepare this one and was slightly startled when an egg white went into my glass. I don’t know about anyone else, but I like my food cooked and preferably not in my drink. While this is not for every palette, its mild flavour doesn’t make a huge first impression, but you are left with an interesting bitter aftertaste. The egg white is whisked rapidly to form a layer of foam on top, which makes for an interesting feel while drinking. Served with a stylish, single, square chunk of ice, better make sure to drink this one fast!
Everybody’s favourite! Best suited for someone who favours sour flavours, the punchy taste of this cocktail will have you craving more! Passion fruit puree thickens the drink which makes for an excellent consistency. The basil leaves infuse the drink with an earthy flavour that becomes more evident with each sip.
This one didn’t impress me. Although a strong citrus theme runs through Shrimp Daddy’s signature cocktail range, this drink just blends in too much with the others. It could probably use more of a twist to make its flavour more interesting.
Transport to a tropical island! All that was missing was sun, sand and the ocean, so I don’t know why this wasn’t named after a seaside city. The pineapple flavour, pleasantly tangy, is complemented by the semi-sweet taste of coconut. Apart from the fruity flavour, the rough taste of arrack provides the perfect contrast, making this a truly outstanding cocktail.
Drastically different from the bright, colourful interior of the bottom floor, Shrimp Daddy’s favours a more loung-y feel with dim lighting and a beautiful granite bar. The seating arrangements add a minimalist touch to the space. They also have a pleasant outdoor area that is nicely lit, perfect for a couple out on a date. It’s early days for them still, and we cannot wait to see how they will evolve!
Tip – Try the Yala – you won’t be disappointed!