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iXiGOers Dec 09 2012

Which are the popular eating joints for authentic Bali cuisine?

Vineet Sharma DEC 10 2012
0 people found this answer useful Useful ?Yes

In Bali you have to be a little more conscious traveller. There is a good possibility you may just come back and get to know that the wonderful, delicious food you had at those trendy beachside restaurants wasn’t really Balinese cuisine but Indonesian and Asian at large.

The food of Bali is something you are unlikely to get at a hotel restaurant or one of those upscale ones. The cuisine here was defined by the climate, terrain and by their austere way of life. To sample traditional Bali cuisine your best bet would be to go knocking on a local’s door or if you can wheedle an invite nothing like it. But hold on, before you go scaring locals with your strangled use of their phrases, asking for food, there is another option of Warung’s or roadside cafes, that serve up some of the best local food on the island. Even locals prefer heading here for their daily meals and you can join them.

Given how Warungs are slowly creeping into popular tourist consciousness, many restaurants too have come with warung style ambience and offerings or many warungs have transformed into more swankier outfits. Some of the popular ones to get your fill of Balinese cuisine are:

  • Warung Bambu

Bamboo walls, beams set alight with cheerful, charming paintings and restaurant staff, set off the ideal ambience for the delicious, earthy meal that is to make your way. Warung Bambu boasts of being the best this side of North Bali and one of the best places in Bali to sample Balinese cuisine, with some incredible pickings from Indonesian cuisine. Visit on Wednesday or Sunday nights and you can tuck into tasty dishes to the accompaniment of dance performances.

Want to carry back with you some truly unforgettable food memories? Enrol into their cooking class where you can try your hand at cooking Balinese cuisine. You will need to book a day in advance and it will cost you about Rp 3,00,000.

A meal for two would cost about Rp 1,80,000 to 2,50,000.

Address: Warung Bambu

Puri Bagus Pemaron





Telephone: +62-362-27080

Official website: www. http://warung-bambu.mahanara.com

  • Murni’s Warung

Run by Bali’s most successful entrepreneur, whose growth and rise from humble beginnings parallels the tourism wave that swept Bali’s way and hasn’t ebbed ever since, Ni Wayan Murni, Murni’s Warung is an institution in itself. Murni’s Warung started out as a simple bamboo and grass structure and was the first real restaurant of Bali in 1974. The quaint, beautiful and upscale structure you see now has evolved much from its humble origins. Based out right where it started from in 1974, the kitchen still uses mortar and pestle to prepare ingredients, with yogurt and black rice pudding being homemade. The restaurant is generally filled with returning foreign visitors, some coming back for the past 37 years, every time they make their way to Bali.

The fare you have here is authentic Balinese cuisine with a sprinkling of some very odd western dishes. The western dishes are actually recipe contributions made by early patrons and are named after them. Try and secure a place at the 4th level of the restaurant. From here you can see the Tjampuhan River flowing by sedately, a perfect backdrop to the truly Balinese experience you will have here.

A meal for two would cost about Rp 22,000 to 40,000. The cost would be higher for duck, Rp 77,000 and seafood, Rp 43,000 to 72,000.

Address: Murni’s Warung

Raya Campuhan





Telephone: +62-361-975233

  • Warung Lada

Traditional warung menu with a cosy, intimate ambience, at Warung Lada you can choose your rice accompaniments in the traditional warung way. Nasi campur, Nasi goreng, tempeh, mie goreng are some of the dishes you can choose from. In addition to the more typical Balinese fare, the menu is also filled with Indonesian dishes. Have a bowlful of soto ayam, an Indonesian soup made of boiled chicken and vegetables that is oddly satisfying, followed with chomping your way through sate (satay), made of chicken/fish/goat, threaded on bamboo sticks and then grilled over coconut husk.

A meal for two would cost Rp 50,000 to 60,000.

Address: Warung Lada

Raya Hanoman





Telephone: +62-361-972822

  • Warung Bonita

Open air dining, amidst frangipani trees, set in a charming, serene garden, Warung Bonita provides some of the best sampling of Balinese as well as Indonesian cuisine, with the pleasant surprise of Australian steak dinner and Tasmanian Salmon thrown in as well. They also have a range of pastas to choose from. Their Indonesian lunch buffet is a classic. Wash down the delicious food with cocktails and wine or their lazumba coffee. To make the setting even more perfect and romantic, every Friday there is a live Balinese musical or dance performance.

The restaurant is a favorite with expats especially and you will find it mostly packed. It will be a good idea to make a reservation before you come here.

A meal for two would cost about Rp 1,50,000 to 2,50,000.

Address: Warung Bonita

Petitenget 2000X






Telephone: + 62-361-4731918

Official website: www.bonitabali.com

  • Warung Sulawesi

A tiny little place with more humble furnishings, Warung Sulawesi is actually known for its Indonesian cuisine offerings. Here you will not find Balinese dishes true to their original flavor, but rather go here for a blend of Balinese dishes with the piquant offerings of Indonesian flavours.  Go for Nasi goreng, Nasi campur, satay and mie goreng and you couldn’t go wrong. You will find the prices here fairly reasonable and moderate.

A meal for two would cost about Rp 24,000 to Rp 50,000.

Address: Warung Sulawesi






Telephone: +62-361-7463052

Though you will get your fill of Balinese cuisine at the restaurants listed above, your food experience of Bali is incomplete if you don’t have a meal at the real warungs, with their thatched roof and bamboo walled cottages that has nothing to do with setting an ambience and everything to do with lack of funds. This is where the locals frequent and the perfect place to rub elbows and engage with them.

The warungs may seem unhygienic and just the places you were warned against eating in. But keep in mind that warungs are the daily eating spot of locals and meant for them rather than tourists and the locals are unlikely to frequent a place with possibilities of causing food poisoning. That being said do expect some stomach upset since in any case the food is new and exotic and takes getting used to. In fact consult the hotel concierge for local warungs to go to or spot the one filled with tourists and locals alike and make a beeline for that one.

Then there are the Kaki Lima, three wheeled food carts pushed around by locals, mostly boys, selling Balinese snacks. Here you might want to maintain some refrain and sample food only from those that are popular with locals.

Pull up a worn wooden stool to a group table, pick your food from the buffet and sink your teeth into simple yet delectable Balinese cuisine-your food memories will fog everything else out and ensure that food tops your ‘things I love about Bali’ list.

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