The owners of Ury Restaurant, known for serving Kerala-style dishes in Newcastle’s Quayside, have now opened the Street Food Sri Lanka café, specialising in authentic Sri Lankan cuisine, Chronicle Live has reported.

The owner of Ury, Dushantha Alawattegama, has been preparing for the launch since 2022.

The café, located at Alley 1 inside Newcastle’s Grainger Market, aims to embody “dinithi” – a concept of good food and fortune, and serves curries and seafood enriched with vegetables and exotic fruits.

Dushantha embarked on a career change when he moved from a banking job in Sri Lanka to the UK in 2003.

His entrepreneurial journey led to the establishment of Ury on Queen Street, which gained recognition as the first restaurant in Newcastle to offer a unique blend of Sri Lankan, Indian and Oriental cuisines.

The new street food café is staffed by a team of Sri Lankan chefs who aim to bring the authentic flavours of their homeland to the UK.

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Get Into Newcastle quoted Dush: “There’s an established exciting food community in the market; it has great footfall; there are lots of traders spanning generations and the exciting plans for the future look great too.”

“Sri Lankan food is not as popular in the northeast as other cuisines and it’s rare to find Sri Lankan food in restaurants. For a lot of our customers, it’s usually their first time trying these kinds of flavours and we usually receive an extremely good response, which is always pleasing and exciting.

He continued saying: “I have always had a passion for seeing people enjoying my food – I think it stems from Sri Lanka’s warm and humble approach to food. For anyone visiting us for the first time, I recommend trying the Kingfish Curry – it’s a traditional seafood dish with a tomato and coconut milk base, a hint of chilli and chunks of freshly caught fish.

“Sri Lanka is a small island in the Indian Ocean and for hundreds of years, we’ve relied on the availability of seafood. Various types of fish will be offered on the Street Food Sri Lanka menu to reflect our fishing heritage and the important role it plays in feeding our communities.”