minYak chats with I Nyoman Wiratma, Executive Chef at Swept Away, The Samaya Ubud’s stunning riverside eatery.
So Nyoman, where are you from in Bali?
I am from Badung, Bali.
Childhood kitchen memories?
I used to follow my mother around when she was in the kitchen. I was fascinated by the mix of Balinese spices used to make the delicious meals and I have been interested in cooking ever since. I still love to help her cook for the family, and I’m still learning from her.
Who was the most influential person in your career?
That would be my beloved mother.
Who is your favourite chef in Bali? And globally?
Difficult to say but I would have to choose. Chef Otto King
How long have you been with The Samaya brand?
Which Samaya resort do you prefer and why?
The Samaya Ubud, because I love nature and it feels cooler than at the beach. It hot enough already in the kitchen!
What makes Swept Away so unique?
The deck at Swept Away is a stone’s throw from the river. It is an ideal setting to lets you slow down, relax and unwind. Our comfortable “lounge” furniture, combined with the cooling breeze from the river creates an ambiance perfect for a glass of bubbles, a cocktail or two, or an ice cold beer. For lunch we make the menu relaxed, light and healthy, a mixture of salads, sandwiches and local fare. In the evenings the menu is modern eclectic, with an adventurous flare. The atmosphere stays tranquil and relaxed but the setting changes in to an enchanting and romantic playground.
What is your favourite cooking ingredient?
Balinese mixed spices – all local ingredients please!
Favourite Balinese dish?
Grilled Chicken with sambal matah.
If you could cook for anyone famous who would you like to cook for?
Give us an idea of the menu?
It’s Asian combined with a Western menu.
Lastly, what is your favourite brand of knives?