Memos from Asia

Best Restaurants in Bali, Indonesia

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Indian, Australian, Mexican, Mediterranean, Japanese, and Indonesian. You might think we are taking you on a gastronomic world tour, but in reality, these are just some of the most popular cuisines you will find at restaurants in Bali.

Indonesia’s most famous holiday destination, the island of Bali, is a multi-cultural hotspot that offers visitors a chance to immerse themselves in distinct experiences that range from the traditional to the fashionable. This diversity in the local attitude is most visible when you eat at the best restaurants in Bali. While exploring the island’s culinary scene, you’ll find both flavorful concoctions made using local ingredients and gourmet international classics prepared by some of the best chefs in the world.

Bo$$Man

Bo$$Man is arguably the best place to bite into gourmet burgers in Bali. Having a somewhat rap meets gangster theme, millennials are likely to find its white-tiled minimalistic interiors with a lit-up ceiling quite Instagrammable. Very much like the space it occupies, the menu at Bo$$Man is also limited, resulting in tried and tested flavors that work splendidly.

Further adding intensity to the burgers are the 18-hour slow-cooked pork and “60-day dry-aged chuck steaks shaped in-house.” First-time visitors should try The Sinatra burger with buttermilk fried chicken, caramelized pineapple, and bacon. On your next visit, though, try the Chook Knight, a burger with fried chicken and refreshing Asian slaw.

Address: Jalan Kayu Cendana No. 8B, Seminyak, Bali

Bali Asli

If there is one restaurant in Bali worth taking a trip to, it’s Bali Asli. Located in Gelumpang Village, a two-hour north-easterly drive from Kuta or Denpasar, Bali Asli champions traditional Balinese cooking in a picturesque setting. Surrounded by paddy fields, with a view of Mount Agung, it simply doesn’t get any more rustic than this.

The food is no different, cooked using locally grown or sourced ingredients in mud stoves or over a wood fire. The menu here varies based on the season and what’s fresh. It is thus best to go with the chef’s three or five-course tasting menu when you visit. Chef Penny also regularly hosts cooking classes that can make your day trip all the more worth its while.

Address: Jl. Gelumpang, Kabupaten Karangasem, Bali

Warung Babi Guling Pak Malen

An essential trademark of foodie destinations across the world is the presence of iconic eateries. There are innumerable excellent restaurants in Bali, but only a few have managed to achieve the legendary status of Warung Babi Guling Pak Malen. A no-fuss setup that is pretty much a shed with no décor, the restaurant still manages to pull in the crowds daily.

On its menu is one item only, the babu guling or the roasted suckling pig. Succulent parts of the pig are served along with a robust broth and rice. Typically, zesty and fiery, you can always ask them for the non-spicy version wherein they bring the chili on the side. Most importantly, you get to enjoy a deliciously filling meal for under $5, but remember, they only accept cash.

Address: Jl. Sunset Road, no. 5 Depan Kuta Point, Seminyak, Bali

Bikini Restaurant

Chic, sophisticated, hipster, and pleasantly moody, Bikini is a fine dining restaurant in Bali that fuses traditional Balinese ethos with a contemporary format in a magnificent manner. Serving food made using responsibly sourced ingredients and aiming for a zero-waste policy, the plates coming out of the kitchen are miniature works of art meant to be savored amongst friends.

The chef’s menu with paired cocktails at Bikini is one of the best culinary experiences you’ll have in Bali. If you would much prefer the a la carte menu, try the smoked duck breast, king oyster and shitake mushrooms, or the wagyu rib eye. Bikini’s menu also has a vegan section that includes truffled cauliflower, chargrilled corn with hand-pressed coconut milk, and a potto “risotto.”

Address: Jl. Kayu Cendana no. 7, Seminyak, Bali

Chandi

Chandi is another one of Bali’s culinary gems and has been a favorite among returning tourists for a while now. The restaurant primarily serves Pan-Asian cuisine in a beautifully decorated space where you can sit and watch your meal getting ready in an open kitchen. The service here is at par with any Michelin starred restaurant, and their extensive menu aims to please gourmands with different tastes.

The must-haves at Chandi are the crispy pork belly, nasi goreng, dimsums, and the chicken hot stone sate plates. However, carnivores need to order Chandi’s bebek betutu, a traditional dish consisting of duck marinated in a mixture of spices and then roasted to perfection.

Address: Jl. Kayu Aya No.72, Kec. Kuta Utara, Seminyak, Bali

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