The inception of Ministry of Crab was attributed to an episode of Dharshan Munidasa’s former TV show “Culinary Journeys”, which featured the Sri Lankan Crab! This was filmed in Singapore; the country that made the Sri Lankan Crab famous as it was here that these crabs had become a brand. It was during the course of this shoot that the initial idea of creating a crab restaurant was born.
When brainstorming names for the crab restaurant he wanted to create, which was to be a culinary homecoming for Sri Lanka’s Lagoon Crabs, Dharshan felt that for the Sri Lankan Crab to have a home in its country of origin it needed a powerful, institution-like name; and so the title, “Ministry of Crab” was established.
The next step was to find a location fit to house the restaurant and the search began for a “Ministerial” space. It was serendipity that the historic Dutch Hospital building became available as a result of a new refurbishment project of colonial buildings by the Urban Development Authority as part of the post-war development.
Foodies through and through Mahela Jayawardena and Kumar Sangakkara were close friends with Dharshan, so when he put forth the idea for a restaurant dedicated to seafood, they stepped in to partner with him, giving flight to their own gastronomic ideals. Their dedication towards bringing the restaurant to life by using it as a platform to pay homage to local produce earned all of them the monikers “Ministers of Crab”.
Everything came together in December 2011 as Ministry of Crab opened its doors for the first time!
In 2018 Ministry of set its sights on the International market and since then has opened branches in Shanghai, Manila, Mumbai, Maldives and now, Bangkok!
– Mahela Jayawardene, Kumar Sangakkara & Dharshan Munidasa