Bali Eats

Biku is quite unique. Many major hotels offer High Teas but I know of no other stand alone restaurant that features them as BIKU does. It made this place an overnight standout and on almost everyone’s must-visit list. They don‘t just do a High Tea but a variety of them [Traditional English, Asian, Kid’s]. Not long after I first experienced a High Tea at Biku I happened to be in Singapore for a few days so thought I would compare it with what was then considered to be the ultimate in High Teas, at the famous Raffles. What a disappointment that was. First queuing for ages just to pay and take part, then forced to select items from a buffet that had been prepared in the kitchens many hours before, some sandwich fingers [very sparingly filled] already drying out, others soggy from excessive refrigeration, plus a few dry pastries, then trying to find a spare chair at the mini tables ignoring the debris from previous diners that had yet to be cleared away. All in all it was a disgusting and pathetic value-for–money experience, and as compared to the elegant, fun, homely atmosphere at Biku, on Jln. Petitenget, there was only one winner, but then Bali had achieved a level of dining excellence and variety envied by the whole world prior to this sad pandemic. Biku not only does High Teas, they also offer interesting breakfasts, lunches and all day snacks that include the ever-popular old fashioned cup cakes and that Aussie standard The Pavlova [pictured]. The tea menu itself reads like a classic wine list. It is an experience not to be missed.

Ryoshi is known to all in Bali, their Seminyak location has been one of those long-lived institutions of high quality cheap dining for many years. Branches in Tuban, Sanur and Ubud do the same. Many places in Bali sell sushi and sashimi but no one even comes close to serving the thousands of individual portions that Ryoshi, do every day. To my mind one of the secrets of raw fish products must be freshness, that is where Ryoshi must have it over the rest. My favourite serve of sushi is their Pisang selection, 12 individual pieces for a total of $7, a fraction of what the cost would be back home in Australia….and fresh! Very popular also are their Maki Rolls, the Rainbow Maki is studded with a variety of seafood and cucumber, wrapped in seaweed and sushi rice. Their menu is very comprehensive but my latest discovery [even though the Japanese have been eating it for 1500 years] is Konnyaku Pirikira, the amazing Konnyaku is only eaten in Japan and is a jelly-like substance made from a potato which is, strangely, only native to Indonesia, and an extract from eggshells. This results is a substance that is low in calories, very rich in minerals and ‘through the roof’ in dietary fibre. As it is sautéed in chilli it also has a bit of fire that stays on your lips for some time after.

Beach Garden is an organic kitchen found on Jln.Pantai Batu Bolong, Canggu. It is open for dine-in, takeaway or home delivery. Breakfasts include all the usual egg combos plus gluten free pancakes [with assorted tropical fruits] and a Roasted Vegetables Omelette. The Superfood Bowl consists of fruits plus coconut chia pudding, goji berries, cahews, cacao nibs, mint leaves and honey. Healthy lunch starters can be Falafel Sliders or a Raw Pad Thai. Pasta can be a Linguine with lentil bolognaise, or a Mushroom Risotto. For mains there are Jackfruit Curry [Indian style], Ahi Tuna Poke Bowl or Grilled Butterfish. Finish with a Vegan Carrot Cake or a Raw Banoffee Pie.

Aperitif still leads the way with its home delivery of fine dining options every weekend. On offer this week are mains of Salad Nicoise, Chicken Basquaise, Moroccan Lamb Shank and Beef Bourguignon. All mains come with a starter and one dessert. You can also order a slice of their special Pate to enjoy with your wine.

Boy N Cow, Jln Raya Kerobokan has now re-opened for in-house dining and you can also still purchase their dry-aged meats, with home delievery from their Meat Shop. All the meat is dry-aged for at least 28 days. This includes grain-fed Black Angus [strip loin, rib-eye, porterhouse and even Tomahawk steaks of 1,000gm], Wagyu [Australian strip loin]. Also available are 150gm hamburger patties. The re-opening is with strict social distancing and accordingly dining is in three distinct sittings; from 5.00 – 6.30, 6.30 – 8.00 and then 8.00 till close. However pre bookings are essential so that the social distancing can be enforced.

La Familia is Spanish on Jln. Dhyana Pura, Semiinyak. Home delivery is available via Gojek’s Go Food. The favourite dishes include Albondigas [meat balls], Galician Style Octopus [sprinkled with paprika, sea salt and parsley], or Octopus grilled with potato parmentier, Spanish versions of the Greek Moussaka, Chicken or Prawn Croquettes, and the potato filled Spanish Omelette. Sundays only you can pre-order one of their Seafood Paellas.

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