Ministry of Crab opens its first overseas outpost in Shanghai

Continuing its culinary journey of showcasing the legendary Sri Lankan crab, Asia’s 50 Best Restaurant – Ministry of Crab opened its first overseas outpost in Shanghai, China earlier this week.

Taking on the task of promoting Sri Lanka’s finest produce and best in gastronomy, Mahela Jayawardene, Kumar Sangakkara and Chef Dharshan Munidasa opened doors of Ministry of Crab, Shanghai at the iconic Barbarossa Restaurant in People’s park by hosting a media luncheon and grand opening event.

Addressing the media, Co-Owner of Ministry of Crab, Mahela Jayawardene said, “We are very excited to be here in Shanghai for the opening of the first international Ministry of Crab and we are very happy to be working with the Barbarossa Group who shares our passion and dedication”.

The Shanghai based Barbarossa Group, whose philosophy is to create a distinction in the gastronomic landscape of China by bringing in new and exciting brands in to develop the F&B business in the country have proved to be likeminded partners for Ministry of Crab, due to the owners’ keen attention to detail and drive to ensure a special experience for all their customers across their portfolio of nine restaurants.

On being the envoys of Ministry of Crab, Co-owner of Barbarossa Group, Michelle Sit said,“We are very proud to be the first to open Ministry of Crab outside of Sri Lanka. Given that the Chinese people greatly enjoy eating seafood, Shanghai is the perfect international city to begin the journey of Ministry of Crab”.

Finding a location fitting the uniqueness of Ministry of Crab was a challenge; leading to the partners finding the perfect space to recreate its dining experience on the ground floor of the Barbarossa Restaurant & Lounge at the People’s Park in the heart of the city. Established in 2005, Barbarossa Restaurant & Lounge is a three floored Moroccan-style building with unique interiors, built across a large pond.

Sharing a few thoughts on Ministry of Crab, Shanghai opening, Co-owner Chef Dharshan Munidasa said, “China has been a location we have always considered,given that so many Chinese guests frequent Ministry of Crab in Colombo. We are delighted to plate up our magnificent crustaceans in the People’s Republic of China. There won’t be much difference in the dishes between Colombo and Shanghai, but we have added one new dish made with local spices, a Sichuan Pepper Corn Crab.”

Attending the grand opening of Ministry of Crab, Shanghai was the Sri Lanka Consul General in Shanghai Lakshitha Rathnayake along with many other distinguished invitees. The guests were able to get a glimpse of the Ministry of Crab dining experience and taste some of the signature dishes starring the magnificent Sri Lankan Crab.

“It’s been an amazing journey for us, as three friends who wanted to start something new and exciting in Sri Lanka and now here we are seven years later in Shanghai,” said Co-Owner Kumar Sangakkara, speaking at the grand opening. “We have a very simple philosophy at the Ministry of Crab – less is more! Everything that we do here is very simple and uncomplicated. We only serve you the best ingredients backed by a lot of heart and passion. We have built a beautiful partnership here with the Barbarossa group and we hope that it is one that continues for years to come.”


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