Galle Road, Colombo 3.
You don't want to be seen here before 2am – it's a faux pas.
Despite its froo froo sounding name, Hotel de Pilawoos is neither a hotel nor French, and generally unappealing to the sober mind and the hygiene-conscious. But after a late night out at Tramps nightclub, with Rum and Cokes having clouded their judgment, this 24-hour roadside joint - possibly the only eating spot in Colombo where the high-rollers dine with the blue-collared - becomes the most popular place among
Kottu rotti – a dish made from a thick Sri Lankan pancake known as godhamba rotti – is a house specialty. And there are variations to choose from, including chicken, mutton, and vegetable with the spice level notched up or down to your desire. With the addition of onions and several local Sri Lankan spices (and most recently an option to add cheese), the ingredients are chopped up with two wide metal blades, one held in each hand, while cooking on a hot metal surface.
The Cheese Rotti is another must-try, consisting of chicken and a load of red onions, smothered in a spicy sauce, rolled up inside a godhamba rotti layered with cheese. You might want to order more than one roll though, especially if your friend plans on having a bite of yours.
The waiters are exceptionally friendly and efficient. But don't ask too much of the decor. With pale blue walls and neon lighting, you really only go there for the food.
PS. You might also want to have some Pepto-Bismol ready for the next day.