Open Time : Mon-Sat noon-2.30pm, 5.30-10.30pm
Entry : free
Address : Hoppers Soho, Frith Street, London, UK
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Why to visit Hoppers
In London, there is nothing like Hoppers. Sure, good Sri Lankan food can be found in certain parts of the capital. However, very few restaurants are solely Sri Lankan (most are South Indian and certainly don't serve hoppers, the egg-topped pancakes after which this Soho restaurant is named); the few exceptions are adequate rather than exceptional. So it's even more impressive that Hoppers is ridiculously good. The small room, a sexy Soho take on all things Sri Lankan, is always full and buzzing, but the wait is well worth it. Hoppers will get your pulse – and your tastebuds – racing if small plates, full flavours, and unapologetic spicing are your thing.
Similarly, the menu modernises traditional Sri Lankan street food. Slender breaded and deep-fried mutton rolls were served with a ginger, garlic, and chilli "ketchup." A tiny dish of roast bone marrow with a fiery 'dry' sauce and buttery roti, as well as an unapologetically spiced guinea fowl curry, were both disturbingly delicious. The egg hopper had a soft-middled yolk at the bottom and crunchy batter on top: no small feat.
The bone marrow varuval (a sort of dry bone marrow curry for spreading on a buttery roti), plain hoppers, and any of the curries if ordered with an extra curry instead of several chutneys will be an unmistakable dish.
By Sparsh Kapoor
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