Roosterfish Beach Club – part of the fun of a trip to Renaissance Resort in Uluwatu – joins the fray on south Bali’s beautiful Bukit peninsular. Ondy Sweeting explores.
As part of the opulent Renaissance Bali Uluwatu Resort & Spa – and a mere 10 minutes away by the hotel’s shuttle – beach club Roosterfish doesn’t miss a beat when it comes to delivering breezy dishes, snacks and icy drinks.
The menu is not enormous but fun and well matched to the location with plenty of fresh seafood, wood-fired pizza, juicy burgers, interesting salads plus a smattering of Balinese favourites.
Much more than beers come in a bucket at Roosterfish including fresh king prawns, spiced chicken and onion wings and three variation of chips: sea salt, cheese and chilli.
Seated in this big open-air wooden joglo watching locals go fishing in their timber outrigger boats may trigger travelling foodies to want to explore the flavours of Balinese cuisine. They are well catered for with the classic roast piggy dish babi guling with all the trappings prepared daily as well as ayam pelalah – chilli and lime shredded chicken. The Roosterfish platter is also a great starting point to taste local food, with half a chicken spiced in the local betutu that uses tamarind, turmeric, ginger, galangal and candlenut, alongside a banana leaf baked baby snapper.
Diners can also go Indonesian-light and hit the beef rendang grilled sandwich with tomato and onion served on sourdough for a unique cultural fusion.
The crafted salads are crisp and fresh and include a Balinese lawar variety of local long green beans chopped with bean sprouts, shallots, chili and lime. The roasted pumpkin salad comes dressed with marinated feta cheese, spicy rocket with crushed cashew nuts and drizzled with balsamic vinegar.
The beach club’s 10-inch pizza selection avoids the banal by offering a unique pizza of chilli crab with coriander and mint topping; spiced lamb with onion, feta and mint cucumber yoghurt or the more traditional Italian meatball with parmesan, blistered tomatoes and fresh oregano. The charcuterie board, packed with Parma ham, duck rillette, salami, cornichons, pickled onion, mustard and grilled bread, is a classic.
Ceviche fiends have a choice of yellow fin tuna or red snapper, which is line -caught and whipped up with avocado, coriander, tomato, chilli and balanced with fresh citrus juice.
The five desserts deliver a lush caramelized banana split and rich chocolate mousse but the most impressive number is the Roosterfish take on the Indonesia treat called es campur – shaved ice.
This Asian delicacy includes lots of shaved ice topped with syrup such a vanilla sauce, coco pandan and sweetened Carnation condensed milk. Then throw in strawberries, grass jelly, cassava, sago pearls or jackfruit.
The club serves up tasty chilled cocktails, American sized signature drinks, ice filled buckets of cold beers and a range of freshly pressed fruit and veggie juices. The wine list has Moet Chandon brut by the bottle and a tight but pleasing selection of reds from Australia, France, California plus a German Riesling.
In fact, the liquid delights list is long and features multiple types of caffeine packed quaffers from cold brew Bootstrap coffee to an espresso martini. There are iced teas, ciders, bubble tea for the kids, local beer plus Indonesia’s Stark craft beer and a full bar of spirits that registers 10 types of vodka and six different tequila from the standard Jose Cuervo Gold to the fabulous Patron Silver.
Unusually, the bar is stocked with Campari, Pimms, Ricard, Sambuca and Pernod, which will keep our European friends happy. The upshot is that the cocktails are impressive with a broad range from the classic Cosmo and Planters Punch through to some cool inventions like the Roosterfish Bowl that has light and dark rum, fresh pineapple juice, orange juice, grenadine, lime and curaçao and is meant to share.
Expect to be constantly distracted by the point blank ocean views from this perfectly placed but barely there building. Roosterfish is a few metres from the golden sands of Pandawa Beach – which has enormous statues of Balinese Hindu deities recessed into caves cut in to the cliff face at ground level. This bizarre outburst of creativity is so spectacular that it makes a trip to Roosterfish a must.
For those motivated to burn off some of that energy, Roosterfish has plenty to keep people buzzing with a big pool full of huge bean bags, a swim-up bar, sunbeds, a sandy beach volleyball court near the restaurant and a grassy lawn flanked by those ubiquitous Balinese pavilions called bales. Take a walk down the beach – or have a body surf on the gentle waves, which up until recently has been among Bali’s best kept secrets and a go-to place for the owners and vacationers staying in the millionaire row villas at the top of the hill.
Or, for those who are looking for a more private experience, Roosterfish can also host gatherings, private parties and weddings. Enjoy!
Have you check out the new restaurant Aperitif Yet? It’s at The Viceroy Ubud. Watch the interview with Chef Nic!