Chilling out at Bistro 82 – take a gander and come hang out
By Dimithri Wijesinghe
Photos Eshan Dasanayaka
Ever wonder who snatched up the prime real estate spot in Bambalapitiya where Wedding Dreams used to be? The place is newly occupied by “Bistro 82”, an upscale looking café that opened in late October 2019.
At first sight, Bistro 82 looks a little intimidating, considering its fine-dining feel and setup and optimal location in the heart of Colombo. However, the place is actually super cosy and pretty idyllic to spend your off hours just relaxing.
We spoke to owner Naomi Bandara, who shared that their main purpose was to instil that laid-back coffee shop vibe, which is why they have all the necessary amenities for anyone looking to either kill time or just hang out – an army of assorted games (Hora Deal, UNO, chess, Monopoly, and many, many more), electrical outlets galore to charge your laptops and mobile devices, and cables for the absentminded who suddenly realise their phone is about to die and have to race against time to charge it.
The free Wi-Fi is a definite plus, and of course the fantastic menu.
The menu at Bistro 82 is with a purpose but also very varied, as they offer full-on meals for a nice lunch or dinner, but also have items like chocolate-covered pretzels and almonds which you can snack on while playing a game with your friends.
The place is best known for their all-day breakfast, offering up waffles, granola bowls, French toast, specialty omelettes, full Canadian breakfast, and other add-ons throughout the day.
We had the opportunity to try out some of their fantastic breakfast options; their sausage and cheese omelette option was particularly filling and is a great option to have if you’re looking for a heavy meal but don’t want to go for the more standard burger or pasta.
The beverages are another aspect to note at Bistro 82; they bring down unique coffee from Canada, which is what they brew at the café. In addition to hot coffee drinks, they also serve cold frappes, ice blends, and among other flavours, a delicious chocolate affogato with chocolate sprinkles that is to die for!
As for tea, they serve exclusively low country tea, from TeaTalk – single estate pure Ceylon tea for those with stronger tea palates.
Bistro 82 also has a range of gourmet sandwiches and they offer customisation according to your preferences as all food items at the café are made in house.
While the place offers everything and anything you can think of with regards to savouries, they really shine when it comes to their dessert options. Bistro 82 gets truly innovative with their desserts as they offer an array of interesting dishes like caramel apple cheesecake, which is something we personally have not had before in Colombo. Their cheesecakes are quite perfect actually and they have a really fun cheese cake dessert cup to go – it’s unlike anything we’ve ever had before.
Bistro 82 is quite versatile in what they offer; with the advantage of an in-house kitchen they are able to prepare food without any preservatives and customise it as they wish and so they are also offering a special party menu for those who either wish to book the location for private events, corporate events, or even cater for corporate meetings and get-togethers. For such events, the place will arrange delivery. However, if you wish to get something delivered for you, look for Bistro 82 on PickMe Foods.
Bistro 82 really caught our interest due to their interesting layout which feels almost like your BFF’s house with nice cushions – it is homey but also quite fancy, and of course their laid-back attitude about customers hanging out at their establishment is a plus. Bistro 82 is definitely a place to check out, and since the location is pretty perfectly located on Bauddhaloka Mawatha, you can’t miss it.