The food was served soon after in one large round tray filled with the three dishes we ordered along with some pickled cucumbers and carrots, green beans with grated coconut, tiny rice cakes, peanut sauce,chili kecap manis (sweet soy sauce) and crispy garlic with chili. We were also served three types of rice - white (steamed), yellow (turmeric-flavoured) and red (like brown rice). The seafood satay was like a tiny kebab but instead of being smashed onto a metal skewer, the seafood is pressed around a stalk of lemongrass before grilling then served on top of a tiny hibachi-style grill filled with charcoal. It was infused with lemongrass and spices and was good although lukewarm even if it was on that mini-grill. The prawn curry was okay although it got spicier with every bite and the squid which was supposed to be lime,lemon and basil infused just tasted like the coconut curry sauce the prawns came in although flavoured with less chili and more lemon/lime. Was the food as good as we remembered? No. Perhaps the flush of new romance clouded our judgement then or maybe, over the years, Bumbu Bali just hasn't evolved with the times. It's a good place to take the first-time Bali visitor though to have a taste of traditional Balinese cuisine in a pleasant setting.
Eleven years, two children and seven countries later, we're back in Bali, this time for a new posting and a chance to experience island life. We'll probably go back to Bumbu Bali with the kids, to let them have a taste of the Balinese Rijstaffel and to tell them all about our special dinner many years ago, so they too can be part of the memory.
Jl. Pratama - Tanjung Benoa
PO Box 132 Nusa Dua 80363
Bali - Indonesia
Telephone: +62 361 774 502 or +62 361 772 299
Both are open daily from 11:00 a.m. to 11:00 p.m.
In Bumbu Bali 1, cultural performance every Wednesday and Friday at 8:00 p.m.