The Physical Possibility Of Death In Mind Of Colpetty Chickens.
Kollupitiya (or Colpetty) market is an awesome and sometimes absurd place. You’ve got dead and temporarily live animals on the ground floor, along with vegetables. You’ve got fish and oysters and happy, comatose cats (not for eating) on the second floor. Then you’ve got imports on the third, ranging from the supermarkety Brana’s and Beema’s to actually imported Chinese and Japanese people selling nations wares. If you ever need four litres of soy sauce, for example.
We (me and Savan, gets old, I know) had to buy a friend a durian as a gift. So we went to the Kollupitiya market. Savan’s written up a geotagged place listing for the market already. That tells you the basics what may be more interesting is the 25 Minutes In Kollupitiya Market article, also available in Sinhala (thanks Ajith).
The modernist Beema’s
I recommend checking those out for a general idea, but these are my impressions. Colpetty Market (I still call it that) is pretty great. I used to just go to get the mango pickle from Brana’s upstairs, but there’s more. I like the upstairs cause you can get imported goods which are generally hard to find. Doritos, decent mayonnaise, tampons. Brana’s used to be just a hot place but they’re getting more supermarkety all the time. There’s a newer place Beema’s next door which actually looks better. I heard that Brana’s used to sell quality booze under the table but I never checked.
There are also Japanese and Chinese stores which used to have the bomb noodles, not that cheap Maggi or other thing. These are noodles with three styles of seasoning, fold-up fork and a formidable bowl included. Plus instructions all in Chinese, but you can figure it out. But let’s go downstairs.
Oysters and cats. Cats not for sale.
The market is frequented by Chinese people in general, and they bargain like it’s their j.o.b. So you get bargains. Some specialities to check are the oysters on the second floor, and if you ask they have novel stuff in the icebox. Roe for example. Not super interested. This floor is notable because there are fat cats sleeping like I have never seen any animal sleep. They are so satisfied. They don’t give a… fish. You can also get oysters for mad cheap, like Rs. 400 for kilos of the stuff. Get them to shuck them tho. We spent a fair amount of time opening them with wrench (not productive) and butter knife (moreso) to get an unfair amount of meat.
On the second floor they also have a Catholic butcher. This is notable because they butcher pork, something our mostly Muslim butchers won’t do. So you can get mad cheap lingus and pork chops and whatever you want. The local lingus is notable cause it has a nice fatty piece inside, but it’s also insanely salty, so better curried. We threw the lingus and oysters in one pot (with beer) and ate with roast paan. Sounds odd, but worked out well.
The veg floor panorama
And then on the ground floor there’s vegetables. We bought a durian and bounced.