L’Assiette is French and offers ‘home-style’ cooking at its garden restaurant on Jln. Merthanadi, Kerobokan. Real French, no fusion just classic French! Lunch is lighter cuisine; Terrine de Campagne or Oeuf Cocotte aux Girolles, coddled egg with mushrooms, Dinner is more exotic; semi-cooked Duck Foie Gras [served cold] and a main of that all time favourite, Duck Confit. However it is one of their dessert dishes that reigns supreme, the very best ever Profiteroles [pictured], a good enough reason alone for a visit. Choux pastry so light it almost floats! IF your experience of this magic French creation is confined to commercial cake shop fare then forget and start again. These are sensational, try once and you will want to re-order every time.
Twist is not much more than a ‘hole in the wall’, so small it is easy to miss. It nestles in the corner of a busy little stretch of budget restaurants on Raya Pengosekan, Ubud [next door to the original location of Taco Casa, which will soon now return to those renovated premises]. One long communal table and a couple of smaller ones is all that there is, and they are almost always full, the ultimate sign of good reasonably priced food in this very competitive area. The menu is an International mix, maybe just all of the chef’s favourites? The Caramelized Pork is exceptional [a touch of Vietnam?], as are the curries which are Thai style. They even do Burgers and very good they are too. Cheesecakes are a daily special, many different creations.
Ryoshi is moving in Sanur. Still to be found on Jln Danau Tamblingan but a few kilometers further south, between Soul in a Bowl and Massimo. The new setting much more spacious than the original with a garden frontage for al fresco dining, inside in the air-con both intimate booths and normal tables, Ryoshi style. Now with 8 outlets overall this group assures that their fish is fresh daily and as a result consistently presents the very best sushi/sashimi in Bali [always prepared ‘a la minute’, as ordered] as well as a standard menu of all the normal Japanese dishes that you would expect to find.
Sukun is the restaurant at the Amnaya Resort just off Jln. Kartika Plaza, Tuban [Gang Puspa Ayu]. Indonesian is the main cuisine although being in a resort there is also a very International menu. Set in tropical gardens the setting was fittingly designed by the late Made Wijaya, who was once a young Australian tourist who made Bali his home and left many landscaping monuments, such as this, behind. It is a nice place to escape to in downtown Kuta/Tuban. Being a hotel the breakfast only goes to 11.00 a.m., something that I can never understand as many people, tourists and locals, often prefer a brunch to a full early morning breakfast [and those who cater well for that are often busy all day as a result]. The product is good enough for that to happen here. Eggs dishes are to the fore with an excellent Benedict leading the way. An unusual but interesting breakfast offering was to combine eggs with soft shell crab. Balinese and standard Indonesian dishes are what is presented and there is a Balinese Megibung that offers a wide range of carefully selected local tastes.
Shima, Bali’s only specialty Teppanyaki and Shabu-Shabu restaurant, Jln. Petitenget, has added another lunch menu update. They now also have a Tempura set menu of Cawan Mushi, Mixed Tempura, Onigiri Katsuo, Mango Tempura Ice Cream, Ocha. Also on offer are dishes of Ramen noodles. Both also feature on their a la carte menus.
Café Sardinia has long been one of the star performers at Beachwalk, now a 2nd Sardinia is about to open in the new Carrefour Trans Studio Mall on Iman Bonjol. Its simple Italian offerings have been a hit with the beach fraternity at Kuta and will also no doubt appeal to the urban cowboys who will frequent the mall.
Mimpi Manis, Jalan Tandakan, Sanur, is just in front of, and operated by the same owner/chef, as Kayu Manis. Not to be confused with the hotel of the same name, as there is no connection. Mimpi Manis has the same attention to detail in the kitchen as big brother but serving local cuisine instead of the international offerings that have long made Kayu Manis one of Sanur’s best restaurants. Another winner!
Ithaka began in Canggu [Jln. Pantai Batu Bolong] and then also opened in Ubud [Jln. Tirta Tawar]. They offer what is always popular, simple tasty food that is cheap! It was not the first, nor will it be the last, place opened by surfers who came to Bali, fell in love with the island and stayed. The all day breakfasts are very popular; Paninis [with bacon & eggs], Avocado Toast [oat toast, scrambled eggs, chia seeds], Honey Granola, Dragon Fruit Bowl, etc]. Many salads incl. Vegan and Quinoa. Tasty snacks; corn cakes, eggplant balls, and Spanish style tapas. Fancy a curry? Choose from Indonesian, Thai or Indian. Just a sandwich or burger, many to choose from. Great value!
Hamabe is the Japanese restaurant at the Westin resort. Their new robata grill showcases a traditional cooking method from the Sendai region in northern Japan. It originated from local fishermen gathering around a communal source of heat aboard their boats to cook food and stay warm while at sea. Set menus are also available for Sushi, Sashimi, Tempura, Tongkatsu, and general Seafood.
By Gerry Williams
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