There are many restaurants in Bali that overlook beaches and the ocean. Some offer fine dining, some are meant for the trendy in-crowd where quality is not the highest priority, some are very basic. One fact however seem to run true wherever; you usually have to pay for the view, and sometimes at a price that is way over the top.
Not so at The Boardwalk, the beachfront restaurant at the Bali Garden Hotel. What once used to be a sole pizza oven under the tree with a few tables and chairs scattered around is now a spacious restaurant, some tables under cover on the open terrace, others under the shade trees, all with views of the beach, and ocean beyond. It is stylish yet relaxed and casual. Access is via The Bali Garden Hotel [secure parking at front] or from the beachfront walkway.
No, it is not fine dining! Boardwalk just offers a basic hearty cuisine perfect for the guests who frequent the hotel and this general area. Entrees and snacks are at or under Rp.70,000, many of which are priced at almost half of that. Mains, bar four dishes, are all under Rp.120,000. No wonder the hotel guests rarely leave to explore elsewhere.
Due to the relaxed nature of the site a prolonged stay, snacking and sipping, is not unusual. Vegetable Curry Samosas [stuffed with potato, green peas and carrot] are in fact crisp deep-fried rice paper triangles, served in a pastry cup topped with a dollop of mango & apple chutney. Spring Rolls can be either Vegetarian [carrot, bean sprouts, cabbage and rice noodles] or Duck. Both of which are served with that Thai sweet chilli sauce so prefect for all deep fried pastries.
There are many other all-day snacks including a tasty Avocado and Tiger Prawn Tails, tossed in a cognac scented cocktail sauce! The usual selection of Sandwiches is available; on bread, foccacia or baguette include a very Aussie Steak Sandwich served in whole grain bread with herb mayonnaise. The Triple Decker is layered with ham, grilled chicken, avocado, lettuce, cheddar cheese and pickled beetroot. Plus Burgers, chicken or beef [the special burger is the Jack Daniels with a sprinkle of that famous spirit in the sauce] .
Pizzas are a big part of Boardwalk’s standard fare, and they are wood-fired and of the thin crisp variety that most people prefer. Whilst the basic Italian Margherita and Capriciosa are available it is the new creations that are the most popular. All time Australian favourite, The Hawaiian, is with the usual ham and pineapple ingredients. The Carne consists of prime minced beef combined with salami. tomato, mushroom, onion and oregano.
The selection of Pasta dishes include Spaghetti, Penne, Fettuccine or Fusilli [gluten free] and can be had many different ways [carbonara, bolognaise or with seafood] as well as Gnocchi baked in the oven with tomato and mozzarella. Soups can be a Chinese style Chicken & Wontons with ginger and oyster mushrooms, old favourites are the Tomato or Chicken & Corn and there is that hot and sour Thai TomYum Goong, seemingly a dish that has been adopted by so many Bali restaurants.
An interesting salad is the Boardwalk Special, iceberg lettuce, alfalfa sprouts, smoked ham, cheddar cheese, boiled egg, whole nuts, crisp bacon tossed in a raspberry vinaigrette. There is also a very healthy Roasted Pumpkin Salad refreshingly different with grapes, onion, goat cheese, orange, roasted almonds and honey.
Seafood at budget prices, now that is rare for Bali! More so when served in a beachfront location such as The Boardwalk. An excellent simple Fish & Chips [nicely beer-battered snapper, with hand-cut chips], a range of local fish or a large Seafood Platter of tiger prawns, mussels, tuna, calamari and snapper.
There are the few mandatory Indonesian offerings. Ayam Asam Manis is chicken, wok fried, with capsicum, onion, pineapple and a sweet and sour sauce . Opor Ayam is one of Indonesia’s great dishes, chicken in a coconut curry. Crisp Duck is first steamed then deep fried. Many vegetarian offerings; Sweet & Sour Tofu, Chickpea and Lentil Bake and Tortillas with red bean, potato, sweet corn, soft onion and coriander in a spiced tomato sauce.
The mains are all quite amazing, not just for their price but for their surprising quality. It makes you wonder about some of the prices charged elsewhere. Baked Lamb Shank [pictured] is in a red wine sauce, roasted onions and honey, carrots on the side. Beef Pot Pie is very English [via Australia], minced Aussie beef on a base of mashed potato served in a ceramic bowl topped with pastry, baked in the oven, served with a pea mash, all hearty fodder! The Chicken Parmigiana is thick slabs of crumbed breast topped with a tomato salsa and melted cheese, tender, tasty and very filling.
Australian Rib-Eye Steaks are with black pepper or mushrooms and the Pork Chops are with garlic, onion and mushrooms, and both are prepared in their special Lava Grill whilst the Baby Back Ribs are in a tangy BBQ sauce.
Desserts offer something for everybody. For ‘chocaholics’, there is either a Fallen Angel or the Chocolate Cake. Sorbets have the extreme tastes of mango, lime and others. Just for the homesick Aussie, a Pavlova [although some say that it originated in New Zealand?]. The Strudel is with pineapple, all of which are suited to being consumed under the trees at beachside….on the boardwalk!
Enjoying a long, late lunch at the Boardwalk makes you feel as if you are on holidays even if you are not!
Restaurant : Boardwalk.
Address : Bali Garden Hotel Jl. Dewi Sartika [ex Jl. Kartika Plaza] Tuban / South Kuta
Telephone : 752.725.
Open : 9.00 a.m. to 11.00 p.m., daily.
Non-Smoking Area : Yes.
Parking : Secure, in hotel grounds.
Price : Rp. 350,000 for two [+ drinks]
Credit Cards : All major cards.
Food : International.
Wine : Small list.
Service : Casual, friendly.
Atmosphere : Salt in the air!
Overall : Great value for a beachfront restaurant.
Copyright © 2018 Gerry Williams
Reviews that appear in Bali Advertiser are based on actual visits to the establishments listed, without the knowledge of the restaurants, and are not paid for by the individual restaurants.
Opinions expressed here are those of Gerry Williams and not necessarily those of Bali Advertiser. Gerry Williams attempts to write from a ‘typical’ diner’s perspective and, whilst quality of food is the most important criteria overall, value for money is the real measuring stick.