The owners of Hopper Kadé did the Sydney market circuit (Orange Grove, Moore Park and Kings Cross) for two years before opening this permanent space in early 2018.
Hoppers are Sri Lanka’s bowl-shaped answer to pancakes. Mainly eaten at breakfast, the crisp dish is made from a batter of fermented rice flour and coconut milk and eaten with fillings such as curried meats and fish; spicy coconut sambals; and a fried egg. And Darlinghurst’s Hopper Kadé is all about them.
The dishes here take Western ingredients and combine them with Sri Lankan flavours. The Lankan-spiced pulled pork and 12-hour slow-cooked beef brisket are decadent and flavourful. There’s also an excellent fish special, made from whatever firm-fleshed white fish is tastiest at the markets. It’s served in a yellow curry with a spicy chilli paste and a stack of pickled cabbage, which is the perfect palate cleanser for the spicy fish.
There are also share plates, such as the crisp chicken served with a sweet and sour date and tamarind sauce. For now Hopper Kadé is BYO, but there are plenty of drinks on the menu, such as the mango lassi. Made with thickened yogurt, mango pulp, mango essence and a secret blend of spices, it’s thick, refreshing and a good foil for the spicy food.