At the recently concluded Asia’s 50 Best Restaurants Award for 2019, only one restaurant from Bali, Indonesia was included in this prestigious list landing at 42nd spot. By default, it also emerged as Indonesia’s Best Restaurant being the lone entry from this country. I was very fortunate to have the time to travel to Bali over the Holy Week and to get a table reservation at Locavore (which should not be mistaken with our local restaurant of the same name).
With local Chef Ray Adriansyah leading the progressive dishes, Locavore is all about using local ingredients complemented with modern European cooking techniques. Guests can choose from the two tasting menus: Signature Locavore or Vegetarian. For each type, there is also a choice between six or nine courses with a drink pairing option, which I find unique. Unlike the usual wine pairing, they offer masterfully crafted cocktails instead.
As with any fine dining setup, the meals start with Amuse Bouche or appetizers. I was in awe of the amount of food they serve and how unique the presentations are. We hadn’t started our 9-course menu yet, but we already had a total of 9 small dishes to fill our tummies.
Ranging from edible flowers to local leaves, the way they prepare their food is ingenious.
Now presenting the 9 Course Menu we ordered. From the very catchy names to the unimaginable complex ingredients they incorporate, I decided to focus on the detailed description of each dish to highlight how inventive they are. Reasonably priced at Rp.1195 (around Php4,500), I only have high praises for everything I got to eat that night.
Surf And (Tropical) Turf
Pan-fried scallop, smoked mussel vinaigrette, scallop chip, green caviar, young coconut, rambutan, kaffir lime oil.
Eat Your Heart Out 2.0
Beef heart pastrami, mulberry coffee vinaigrette, pickled mulberries, trijata capers, red amaranth leaves, beef garum powder.
Almost raw lobster, coconut pickled heart of palm, aromatic oils, shallot lemongrass sambal, warm lobster gel, siracha chili powder.
Into The Sawah (aka everything that lives, grows, and swims in and around the Ubud rice fields)
Heritage galuh rice porridge, 64 degrees duck egg yolk, snails, frog leg abon, fern tips, wild flowers.
This is arguably the iconic dish of the restaurant and has always been a constant in their ever-changing menu.
Black is the New Orange
Carrot slow roasted in smoked beef fat, kecap glaze, carrot reduction, spiced carrot puree, smoked lacto-fermented carrot powder.
Grilled octopus, kluwak mole, belimbing wuluh, chives, coconut curry, timun tikus, lime picked spring onions.
The Things You Can Do With Rice…
Ikaw air tawar, koji rice crust, ginger torch brem sauce, tape pickled fruits, puffed rice sambal.
Coconut sorbet, coconut biscuit, young coconut candy, frozen coconut milk, pandan coconut yoghurt, coconut milk wafer.
Blood berry tart, cocoa oil crust, egg white coconut creme, blood berry syrup, coconut blood berry sorbet.
Our gastronomic experience did not stop with the last course. They served two additional small desserts and we had complimentary Petit Fours. Literally meaning “small oven” in French, these are bite-sized confectioneries given after a meal. What I wasn’t prepared for was how it was presented to us. The quantity was huge for two people, and they were placed in a Sungka board.
Each of these is truly delectable.
Another check off of my bucket list! This is one of the few instances I felt that every peso I paid was worth it. By dining at this restaurant, the goal was not just to have a great filling meal. Rather, it was to fully immerse myself into Indonesian culture through the local ingredients used in each course. Indeed, I felt transported to different places at once with every bite.
What a gastronomical journey it was!
Jl. Dewisita No.10, Banjar Padang, Tegal, Kabupaten Gianyar, Bali 80571, Indonesia