To Form a Ministry
Mon, December 1st, 2014

The origins of the Ministry of Crab date back to the first season of Dharshan’s TV show “Culinary Journeys,” an episode focusing on Sri Lanka’s Lagoon Crab. Up until then, Nihonbashi had only been using export-quality crab for special events such as the Japanese New Year and New Year’s Eve, giving Dharshan the foundation to build up relationships with exporters.

The episode dedicated to Lagoon Crab was filmed not only in Sri Lanka but also in Singapore, which is the largest importer of our crabs, leading to a friend questioning Dharshan on why he didn’t open a crab restaurant in Colombo. From then on, the idea grew into a plan, and Kumar and Mahela, who were close friends, came on board. Next was the task of acquiring a location majestic enough to bear the name Ministry of Crab, which was finally found in the form of the iconic 400-year-old Dutch Hospital, which is not only one of the oldest buildings in Colombo Fort but also undoubtedly one of the most beautiful. The Ministry of Crab opened its doors in 2011 as a culinary home for Sri Lanka’s giant crustaceans (the largest served to date being 3.2 kg!). The Ministry of Crab is doing things differently and has more dishes than ever before. The garlic chili crab has a large following, with its olive oil dip in bread becoming an iconic thing to do at MOC. From our humble beginnings, the Ministry of Crab has become a restaurant that, while still humble in our food, is gaining popularity worldwide, and we are grateful to our guests for making us who we are.