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Asia Bali Food From Travels Indonesia Seminyak


Oh this place is nice. Suddenly very aware that I look like a beach bum backpacker; with my Bali shorts tasselled with pompoms and my hair chlorined, unbrushed and pulled back into a low ponytail. Seminyak’s Petitenget has an air of France on a summer’s day about it, with comfortable wicker chairs, big glass doors, huge mirrors and a bar lined with Veuve. All this in dovetail grey and with a beautifully patterned tiled floor. Within minutes I was already trying to work out when I could fit in visiting Petitenget again, and that’s just based on the bruschetta and chicken club baguette with bacon and avocado I’ve seen being passed to the table of young hipster Australians across the way from me.

A few days of partying in the beach clubs of Seminyak and you start to crave some goodness, which Petitenget can certainly help with. The restaurant has an organic farm nearby from which 80% of the produce used in the kitchen is farmed. The focus is on sustainable methods and the quality of the fresh, local ingredients used are evident in the dishes served.  I ordered the pineapple, green apple and ginger juice (30,000 IDR)- which is deliciously refreshing – along with the pearl barley salad with marinated feta, chickpeas, tomatoes, roast pumpkin, green beans, chilli roasted cashews and a blossom honey vinaigrette (70,000 IDR). The salad was large and filling, beautifully presented and with a good kick of spice to it. I did expect and wished for more feta than was presented dolloped on top, and although the rest of the salad was delicious,  I missed that extra saltiness coming through. That said, it was certainly  one of the better salads I’ve eaten in all my months in Bali. Dessert was a dark chocolate, espresso and salted caramel tart (65,0000 IDR) topped with glossy pecans and served with a raspberry sorbet that cut through the rich and dense tart well.

The menu here is big, with a wide range of salads – choose from yellow fin tuna, Vietnamese duck, poached chicken, goats cheese, barbecued tiger prawns; risottos and pasta with wagyu meatballs; along with other mains such as fresh snapper, steak and a chicken and seafood laksa. Prices range from 80,000 – 110,000 IDR and whilst a treat if you’re backpacking through Bali, is a steal if you’re on holiday – especially for food of this quality.

Breakfast is just as good if not better than lunch when I return, though I am notoriously biased towards a decent brunch. Smoked salmon, asparagus and scrambled eggs fill a buttery croissant (67,000 IDR) and serve as the perfect filling breakfast to tide me over until I reach next destination hours later. The coffee is strong and the bite sized sample of granola with fruit and yoghurt assures me their healthier offering is strong.

There are a lot of people who seem to know each other here, and you can swiftly tell this is a favourite of Seminyak’s large expat community. An excellent option for breakfast, lunch or dinner and just a stone’s throw from some of the area’s best shopping. The perfect pit stop.

Jl. Petitenget Raya No. 40X, Seminyak, Badung, Bali 80361, Indonesia
+62 361 4733054

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Asia Bali Food From Travels Indonesia Seminyak

Lilin at Potato Head Beach Club

Bali has a few famous places readily recognised as ‘institutions’ and Potato Head Beach Club is one of them. Set back from the sands of Seminyak, overlooking the ocean and a prime spot from which to view the sunset, Potato Head comprises three beautifully designed restaurants surrounding an impressive infinity pool with swim up bar.

The choice of restaurants at Potato Head range from the chandelier decked out Tapping Shoes with French cuisine, the international Potato Head Bistro where I’m told there’s a particularly good smoked salmon and cream cheese bagel on the menu, and Lilin, the Asian arm of the beach club. Tables are long and communal, the restaurant covered but without walls, allowing patrons to enjoy an al fresco experience – which in Bali could just as easily be dining in the middle of a tropical rain storm as the baking sun.

At lunch Lilin is focused on sharing plates with classic Asian flavours and plenty of spice. We each chose two sharing dishes plus the chilli crab with steamed buns and were left impressed by all that we sampled, although not for the faint hearted if you’re someone who doesn’t really enjoy their food spicy. The food was bold and rich in flavour, particular favourites included spicy shredded chicken with fresh kafir lime leaves and baby aubergine with shallots and chilli. However the real star of the show was the chilli crab with steamed buns, which was a relative bargain for the equivalent of around £15.

Undoubtedly one of my favourite parts of dining at Lilin  is their sangria menu, which uses inventive and locally sourced ingredients. There are six different concoctions, from Lemongrass and Mango Sangria made with white wine and amaretto, to the ‘Zen’ – blush rose with melon liqueur and pomegranate. We sampled two or three and all were just as more-ish as they sounded on the menu, whilst the Prohibition Iced Tea my friend had was novel in its presentation in a teapot with dry ice and suitably potent for a drink reminiscent of the 1920s, complete with vodka injected oranges.

Even if you don’t fancy dining at Potato Head and instead simply go for the pool and the cocktails, you must go. As is the case with any beach club worth its salt, the drinks menu is not only a work of art (literally, it’s hand illustrated) but each cocktail reads like miniature poem. You will unfailingly see the espresso martinis being passed out of the bars en masse, and with good reason too – these are among the best espresso martinis I’ve ever had – and I’ve had a fair amount. Ok, a lot. I’ve had a lot. What’s more, each is served with a homemade chocolate chip cookie.

Lounge beds by the pool are available, though you may need to go on a waiting list for the privilege. There is a minimum spend requirement, and though I cannot recall how much, it’s not too hefty, all things considered. This sort of place in Ibiza or Marbella would set you back a lot more.

There are a few nights in which Potato Head hosts DJs and from evening until the early hours a big party ensues, and on the flip side there are nights that are distinctly chilled in comparison, so time it right and do your research beforehand if one or the other is favourable. Either way, Potato Head remains a definitive must do in Bali.

Jl. Petitenget No.51B, Seminyak, Kuta, Kabupaten Badung, Bali 83061, Indonesia

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Asia Bali Food From Travels Indonesia Seminyak

The Fat Turtle

Red Velvet Pancakes? That’s a thing. That is A Thing at Seminyak’s The Fat Turtle cafe on Jalan Petitenget. Red Velvet Pancakes with cream cheese mousse, chocolate soil, honeycomb, ice cream…if you’re a fan of a sweet brunch, this is a dream. If Red Velvet doesn’t swing it for you in the sweet stakes, there’s banana bread French toast with caramelised banana, ginger walnut crumble and vanilla ice cream.

For the savoury among us, The Fat Turtle offers the usual suspects of eggs with bacon, omelettes and Eggs Benedict with a twist of pulled pork, pickled green chilli and lime hollandaise. On top of this all-day breakfast there are a few sandwiches and lunch mains to balance the menu, along with an array of healthy cold pressed juices, milkshakes, teas and coffee. There’s even a Brekky Pasta which sounds much like a Carbonara with a poached egg on top – a great choice if it’s more lunchtime than breakfast when you stumble into Fat Turtle to aid the hangover from a day at Potato Head.

My first visit calls for Kaffir Lime Leaf Sweet Corn Fritters with crispy bacon, tomato relish, poached eggs and avocado hollandaise because a) bacon and b) avocado. The eggs are perfect and the bacon crispy, just the way I like it, though I’d probably prefer smashed avocado with it rather than the hollandaise.  With that in mind, the smashed avocado on toast with poached egg ordered with bacon as an extra becomes order of the day some weeks later, and it’s kind of great. I wish it was twice as big, but that’s purely down to greed and not because I leave the café hungry. The juices are fresh and the coffee is strong, as is the wifi. The owner is friendly, recognising me on my later visit. A solid option for a quiet breakfast when in Seminyak.

Jalan Petitenget No. 886A, Seminyak, Kabupaten Badung, Bali, Indonesia
+62 813 3737 4766

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Asia Bali Food From Travels Indonesia Seminyak

Revolver Espresso

Revolver Espresso is well renowned as serving some of the best coffee in Bali, and as I sit on my little distressed table waiting for my long black, I see two separate expats roll up on their scooters and jump off for their regular orders in the space of four minutes. Luckily for me, ‘Baby Revs’, the postcard stamp sized little sibling of the bigger Revolver (just off of Seminyak’s Jalan Kaya Ayu at Gang 51), is a 2 minute walk away from my hostel on Jalan Petitegnet. Revolver is the sort of coffee shop that wouldn’t be amiss in East London or one of Melbourne’s laneways, and I reckon even the snobbiest of Melburnite coffee lovers would agree that the standard of joe is among the best.

Breakfast runs all day at Revolver, menu options named after different types of gun. I tried the simple Avocado on Toast (one of the only dishes not given a fancy name), which was delicious on excellent quality sourdough, though I probably could have had an extra slice. Next up was the Agent 99: goji berry bircher muesli with fresh fruit, which was delicious with grated apple and blueberries atop, reminding me that a healthier option doesn’t man sacrificing taste. On my next visit I struggle to choose from the lunch menu as everything sounds so appetizing, but I go for The Heri – chicken pesto with baby spinach on a toasted baguette – and I’m not disappointed, though more chicken would have been appreciated.

Coffee beans are roasted and blended in Bali and fruit and veg is organic wherever possible, such is the importance placed on putting goodness into your body on the Island of the Gods. The quality of food here is consistently high, I just want slightly bigger portions. That may well be my sheer greed, though. The original Revolver hosts a larger menu to befit its size, including more breakfast options such as pancake stacks as well as burgers and Mexican fare from 11am through until 5pm for lunch, as well as serving a range of juices that would be great to see in Baby Revs.

Next time you find yourself in Seminyak be sure to swing by Revolver for breakfast, lunch or even just a quick coffee with one of their cake slices or tarts. The larger outpost is ideally located in the middle of some of Seminyak’s best boutiques and serves as the perfect pit stop between all the shopping you’ll be enticed into doing.

‘Baby Revs’: Jalan Petitenget No.110, Kuta Utara, Bali 80361, Indonesia

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