The Steuart by Citrus

The Steuart by Citrus Claimed

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Steuart & Co

Nestled on the ground floor of the building that once housed Sri Lanka’s oldest mercantile establishment, & Co Pub and Kitchen is Citrus Leisure’s answer to the perfect watering hole for Corporate Colombo. An authentic Scottish themed pub (the only thing missing being the servers in kilts!), & Co provides a unique dining experience. The ambiance is a mixture of old colonial grandeur and cool urban which makes it the perfect place to relax and unwind.


Before we get in to the food and drinks one of the best parts of our experience was “Lal” and “Sameera”, our two wonderful servers who made it a point to look after a noisy table of 12 with ease, dealing with every whim and fancy from hot, cold and lukewarm water to being indecisive about the amount of carbs in each dish.


& Co serves both alcoholic and non-alcoholic beverages by either the glass or bottle on the former. The fine wines and cocktails list is extensive and we were lucky to be there at happy hour, which is actually two hours since it happens between 5:30pm – 7:30pm. The & Co twist on the classic mojito which includes mango and passion was by far the most popular. For the teetotalers try the “Woo Woo” which is a sweet concoction of king coconut water, strawberry puree and sugar syrup. If there is anyone in your bunch that is not too sure which end of the stick they are on, give them a cider.


While sipping on your favourite drink, there’s nothing quite like a fiery “bite” on the side. & Co’s options include the traditional cheese toast with lots of green and red chilli, and BBQ chicken wings that are served with a hot sauce made to a very secret recipe.


Being a pub, the mains menu is all about comfort food and comes packed with lots and lots of carbs so expect nothing less than burgers, hotdogs, pasta and even our very own rice & curry. Of the various dishes we ordered the Bangers & Mash is a hefty portion of potato but not enough meat. The onion gravy helps to cut out the overpowering taste of fresh meat so unless you have a good drink to wash it down this meal maybe a little difficult to digest.


As its name suggests the “Dirty Loaded Burger” comes loaded with a beef patty, lettuce, tomatoes, caramelized onions, egg, cheese and bacon. It is all about presentation with this dish that comes served on a wooden board with a side serving of fat chips in a bucket. Good ol’ Fish N’ Chips is also served similarly and we love the fact that the portions are generous and not all petite restaurant-ish where you get two-mouthfuls and you’re done.


One of the most talked about dishes here is the ribs and in true Scottish style, the meat falls off the bone and is best eaten with bare hands. We also ordered what the menu claims to be the British national dish a.k.a Chicken Korma and Basmati Rice, but were not too impressed. Paying tribute to the Dutch who ruled Ceylon before the Brits took over the authentic lamprais served up also does not disappoint. If you are a true Sri Lankan who loves your rice & curry then ask for the “pork” version which in short is simple, spicy and delicious.


If this humongous meal does leave any room for dessert then & Co patrons are spoilt for choice. We picked the Baked Alaska, Hot Fudge Brownie, Apple-Pie with Ice-Cream, and Sticky Toffee Pudding with Ice-Cream. Let’s be extremely honest about dessert and put it down to one-word… Yummy!


Being that we had a birthday girl amongst us, the staff was also extremely accommodative with a surprise cake and candles. They joined in the revelry and just made the celebrations so much more memorable. Considering that most establishments lack in this area of hospitality, & Co certainly have done something right with the training given to their staff. Or maybe it is just genuine hospitality that comes straight from the heart.


Parking is a bit of an issue considering that the hotel itself is on the far end of the Dutch Hospital precinct, but we did notice that most patrons walked. We were also told that a majority of the regulars are those from the corporates within WTC and the vicinity who want to spend a relaxing evening after a hard day’s work, so for them it’s just a matter of crossing the road.


Everything about & Co is relaxing, from the lighting to the cosy chairs and the chilled drinks to the hot food. They should maybe consider having a band or an acoustic singer perform instead of the music blaring out of the sound system. All in all though this is one of those places where any type of groups of friends or colleagues could gather for a good evening.


So here’s our rating…


Location         ****   (In the heart of the city but limited parking!)

Ambiance       ****   (Total Scottish Pub thing going!)

Service           ***** (Exceptional service!)

Food               ****   (Superb pub food!)

Overall                       **** ¼


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