Why is it that the booze shops have some of the most stylish shop interiors in Colombo? It’s one of those great mysteries. Alcohol is heavily taxed over here, so we advise you to make use of duty free shopping at airports when traveling in and out of the country. However, there are great places to buy decent wine and a good selection of spirits these days. Most supermarkets don’t have an alcohol section; a couple have a separate shop where you can buy alcohol and pay for it separately, e.g.Keells Super at Crescat Boulevard and Cargills Food City on Staple Street. You will also see the rather intimidating “wine store” on the side of the road. They may look grotty, but they are perfectly fine to queue up at to get your cans of Lion beer. On a side note, in recent years the gin and tonic available has massively improved with the importation of Fever-Tree and Bickfords tonic. As much as we want to support local Elephant House tonic, it does not cut the mustard for your perfect G&T, so when at a bar, ask for your preference and stock up in the supermarket. Keep in mind, you cannot purchase any alchol after 9pm in Sri Lanka from shops.
Some great wine and spirit shops are listed below: