Sarah Douglas skips church to sample the best Sunday roasts on the island. Hallelujah.
The Fire Station, Sanur
So often Sanur gets a short stick when it comes to food but in fact there are some damn good restaurants and cafes on the quiet side. The Fire Station is probably the most popular and reservations are often required despite the fairly impressive size of the two-storey venue. Owned by an Englishman and run by a highly efficient Dutch manager, The Fire Station breaks the sleepy Sanur mold every day. The Sunday roast is perfectly executed and a great way to break into the scene in Sanur – yes, there is one, albeit somewhat suburban. Meet the locals, settle into a lovely pork roast with crackling or an imported striploin of beef with specials on wine each week and sparkling service. When the pub came to Sanur they called it The Fire Station and it is a hot pick for the Sunday session.
Tel: 0361285675 www.tfsbali.com
The Plumbers Arms, Kerobokan
The first pub off the rank to serve up a home-style roast dinner, The Plumbers Arms continues to be the drop-in centre for those who yearn for Sunday sessions at the local. Brought to you by the team from the Echo Beach House and Scallywags, The Plumbers Arms’ roasts come piled high with freshly roasted joints of beef, lamb, turkey or pork, depending on what’s looking good at the market. With the full trimmings, including two crispy Yorkshire puds to dip into the rich gravy, a full smorgasboard of traditional veggies including roasted pumpkin, potatoes, cauliflower cheese and greens. At under Rp100,000, it is one of the best deals in town. The perfect antidote to Saturday night, a friendly meeting place for friends and families, The Plumbers Arms prides itself on cold beer, a healthy wine list and – get this – a recently introduced low carb menu. Roast minus the stodge for weight watchers.
Tel: 0851 0044 9132 www.theplumbersarms.com
Grain Espresso, Seminyak
Grain takes a more Australian approach with its specialty roast, a roast lamb dinner like Mum used to make. Complete with mint sauce, gravy, a warm, crusty roll to wipe the plate clean and a bundle of sparkling, fresh veg. The popular coffee shop in the middle of Seminyak’s main street has won fans for its artisan coffee and all day breakfast, but there’s more to this café’s menu. Putting the lamb roast on Sunday’s menu pulls in a whole new load of locals and tourists who need a little comfort, a reminder of home on a Sunday evening. The Aussies do it a little differently than the poms but its no less delicious. A Gold Coast boy in the kitchen ensures that this one is the bonza, beauty special it needs to be. With coffee and some great dessert options to follow, you won’t leave hungry.
Tel: 0361 730529 www.grainespresso.com Yak Map. V.13
The Orchard, Nakula
Picking up the English pub theme in Seminyak, The Orchard is located in a back street off Jl. Nakula, but that hasn’t stopped a growing number of local expats from finding a home away from home here. English-run, a proper English dude is cooking the Sunday roast out back and it has all the home-made markers we yearn for. Brilliant Yorkshire puds as big as your fist crown the roasts of the day and a traditional assortment of sides includes the green veg your Mum made you eat, but in full glory and perfectly done (not the mushy grey stuff some of us were forced to eat!). The atmosphere is lively, the beer is cold and the live music turns this little pub into a full-on party venue.
Tel: 0361 3003502 www.facebook.com/TheOrchardBali Yak Map. Y.13
This sparkling venue beside a stunning jewellery shop has done the roast so successfully they have had to add Wednesday to the menu. Lit with chandeliers and festooned with jewel-like décor, Jemme takes it a step up with a beautifully presented roast that ticks the boxes and is often full, so make a booking to avoid missing out. Served on a wooden board, the roasts include chicken, beef, lamb and even a nut roast for the vegetarians. Everything is served separately to great effect, and diners relish the experience of creating their own plates. It remains the island’s most popular roast, despite some heavy competition. It’s really quite refined for comfort food and it makes no apologies for this. It tastes like Mama’s and it looks like royalty.
Tel: 03614732392 www.jemmebali.com Yak Map. R.3
This one, I have to say, is the Rolls Royce of the roast dinner picks. Luna 2 is one of the funky new players in town, festooned in retro ‘60’s style, the tiny diner is overseen by English Chef Errol, who makes the rounds regularly and is quick to tell you which roast is his pick for the week. At Rp295,000 for two courses (pudding is not to be missed here), it is also the most expensive but hardly going to break the bank. Former Gordon Ramsay chef, Errol does this favoured meal justice and it is served much as your favourite cook would do it at home but with the flair of a proper chef. The meat is perfectly cooked, we moaned over the crispy-skinned pork belly and the slow roasted shoulder of lamb. The sides are customized for each meat and it’s about as close to perfect as you will find. This is one that needs to go on the bucket list. Wines by the glass are also a great addition and the brunch-style cocktails are a treat.
Tel: 0361 730402 www.luna2.com Yak Map. O.10