Sarah Douglas flames on with foods that are all fired up.
The modern dining space that is Mason has earned its place on the Batu Bolong strip for bucking the trend. It’s neither vegan, nor vegetarian, and there’s no sign of a smoothie bowl, although there are some nice options for the meat free diners. Slow cooked lamb shoulder, beautifully pink aged duck breast and pork belly are stars on this menu and go perfectly with not so traditional sides. The wood-fired grill adds flavour to some of the best menu items, from perfectly grilled prawns, to one of my favourites, the char-grilled chicken served simply with a side of fresh lemon, aioli and jus. The wood-fired grill is both barbecue and oven and is used throughout the menu, pimping up dishes like the wood-fired carrots that shine with personality accompanied by yoghurt and dukkah and the house-made ricotta and spinach tart, prepared in a cast iron pan atop the flames. Integrated into the garden terrace at the back, the flavour literally floats on the breeze as barramundi fillets sizzle, beef short ribs cook long and slow and a 5+ wagyu ribeye does a quick trot on the flame to arrive perfectly charred and medium rare.
Tel. +62 857 9250 5028 www.masonbali.com Yak Map P.1
The Meat Emporium
Meat lovers will rejoice that finally we have a proper butcher shop, tucked away in the leafy streets of Jl Bumbak in Umalas. Those who have lugged their packages of sausages and legs of lamb through customs will share the relief in knowing that an Australian has opened the doors to a meat emporium that brings us all the cuts we love. From lamb chops to home-made sausages, smoked ham on the bone, dry-aged T-bones steaks and air-dried beef pastrami, the meat counter is full of quality meats at surprisingly good prices. The Australian tradition of barbecuing your own meat, a pub favourite, has also found a home at The Meat Emporium. A barbecue is fired up all day so that punters can make their purchase at the counter and enjoy it at the surrounding tables, built under a shaded canopy. Salads and baked potatoes are on the menu along with soft drinks and cold beer. You can even bring your own bottle of wine and make a night of it. While Europeans may find this practice a little weird, for Aussies, Kiwis and Brits, it’s all too familiar. Eat in or take away, the meat is all flown in from Australia and the neighbourhood butcher, Bruce, is on hand to make recommendations on the best ways to cook up your meat feast.
Tel. +62 361 9347956 www.themeatemporium.store Yak Map Q.1
Cooking over fire is nothing new to the Indonesians and Nusantara puts their wood-fired grill front and centre to dramatic effect. A project created by the team from Locavore, Nusantara puts authentic Indonesian dishes on the table at the fiery restaurant. It’s the grill that catches your eye the moment you arrive. The flames leap as whole fish, pork, chicken and even local goat, are spiced up with local flavours before being grilled to add some earthy and familiar flavours to the menu. A great selection of Indonesian classics, all with Locavore’s stylish signature, sambals and sides, make this an event for lovers of Indonesian food and a culinary journey of discovery for those who are yet to be initiated. As Locavore does, everything is sourced locally, the meat is prepared by their own butcher shop, sustainable seafood is delivered daily and vegetable dishes are organic and exciting. Chef Putu, one of the original Locavore cooks, heads up a multicultural team of Indonesian chefs who bring their own regional specialties to Ubud diners.
Tel. +62 361 972973 www.locavore.co.id/nusantara
Pig Satay Under The tree
Swear to God, that is the translation. Satay Babi Bawah Pohon began life as a satay stall under a tree in Legian. The grill grew longer and longer until someone decided to put up a tarpaulin and call it a restaurant. As far as pork satay goes (and that is pretty much what they sell, not much else), this is as authentic as it gets, and locals will point you in this direction if you look ready to go street-side. Aside from being delicious, this is as much a cultural experience as anything. The satay comes and goes so quickly that it’s as fresh as a warung gets. Seeing the perfectly sized satay sticks lined up in a row, licked by the flames, seasoned and spiced to the last bite, is enough to make you forget the plastic covered tales, the pedestrian wooden chairs and the lack of air conditioning. Nestled away off Jalan Dewi Sri, follow your nose, and the crowds, to find this tucked-away slice of local life.
Hog Wild by Chef Bruno
If you’ve ever taken the drive up Jl Batubelig (and probably got stuck in a traffic jam) then you’ve definitely had a taste of what Hog Wild offers, as the smell of ribs cooking on the open grill is as distinctive to this area as the twists and turns in the road. Hog Wild was fashioned on Ubud’s famous Naughty Nuri’s before branching off into their own territory. Chef Bruno honed his skills in America (although he is a Frenchman) and there is a taste of the USA in these ribs, along with the unmistakable in-your-face Asian spice. It’s a glorious combination. Naturally you don’t have to order the ribs, but you’re mad not to, they are every bit as good as they smell. The smoke coming off this grill and floating across the street has been known to turn diners into, well, pigs! They do a smashing porn corn as a side ( that will surely spice up your dinner) along with rice or jacket potatoes. There is a full menu of appetizers, mains and desserts as well and don’t miss their shaking cocktails, they are memorable.
Tel. +62 361 8476722 www.hogwildwithchefbruno.com Yak Map M.3
On a moonlit night with the waves washing the shore, the bamboo pavilion on Karma Beach hosts a Saturday night beach barbecue that marries the freshest seafood with local flavours to create an atmospheric feast. Sitting around the open fire is extra special in this amazing location and chef Joseph Astonishek gathers a world of inspiration to Karma’s Saturday night barbecue dinners. This is a chef who brings innovation to every aspect of this delicious dining experience. He claims to be a bit of a closet engineer, so the self-designed barbecue is complete with pulleys to find just the right heat depending on what’s cooking. Expect a Jimbaran-style array of fresh seafood, from local prawns to slipper lobsters, from mahi mahi to gindara. Dessert gets the treatment as well, with strings of pineapples dancing over the flames ready to be transformed into happy and delicious endings. Pull up a bean bag, take your place around the fire and settle into a dinner soundtrack. On a beautiful evening, there are few things better.
Tel. +62 361 8482202 www.karmabeach.com Yak Map D.16