Take a leaf from the ad­dress books of Aus­tralia’s best-con­nected Bali in­sid­ers to dis­cover the lat­est and great­est.

Gourmet Traveller (Australia) - - News - GOURMET TRAV­ELLER

Ge­orge Gor­row, co-owner of Canggu ho­tel The Slow, first vis­ited Bali on a surf trip with his fa­ther when he was 14. “I re­mem­ber walk­ing down the long­est, steep­est paths to get to three or four tiny warungs in Uluwatu,” he re­calls. “Now, you have su­per­clubs like Om­nia there.”

Janet DeNeefe, restau­rant owner and founder of the Ubud Writ­ers & Read­ers Fes­ti­val, moved to Bali 30 years ago. “Bali is more ex­cit­ing now than ever be­fore,” she says. “Whether it’s with a beach-side cocktail, a moun­tain-climb­ing ad­ven­ture or a more spir­i­tual ex­pe­ri­ence, you can re­tox or detox in your own sweet time.” As the is­land’s ho­tels, eater­ies and day clubs pre­pare for high sea­son, these lo­cals and lovers share their lat­est and great­est Ba­li­nese mo­ments.


“We have so much history in Bali. We fell in love here, got en­gaged here and then mar­ried here, too. It’s so nice to now have a busi­ness here and be part of the change hap­pen­ing on the is­land. The new Black Cat Speak

Easy, owned by pho­tog­ra­pher Crille Rask, is the per­fect syn­op­sis of how Bali is pro­gress­ing: in­ti­mate, well­con­sid­ered spa­ces that would seem at home in any of the world’s big­gest cities, but still with an un­de­fin­able is­land un­der­tone. It’s hid­den be­hind a mini-mart on the short cut be­tween Ber­awa and Canggu. Hid­den Beach

Bar, on the other hand, is where we go to tap into the old Bali we first fell in love with. It’s just a sim­ple beach shack with­out too much of a crowd, a place to sip co­conuts with lime and ice-cold beer.

“Our early morn­ings are usu­ally spent at Quince.

The fam­ily be­hind it have an im­pec­ca­ble eye for de­tail – their ad­join­ing home­wares shop is beau­ti­ful – and you can see that wis­dom in the kitchen, too. Plus, the cof­fee is smooth as vel­vet.

“A live DJ, kind staff and the lime and co­conut body scrub put Spring a step ahead of other Canggu day spas. And for shop­ping, Potato Head’s bou­tique shop at ho­tel Kata­mama, Canaan, is great for jew­ellery and pre­cious home­wares from nearby is­lands. We picked up an old ikat there, a tra­di­tional wo­ven tex­tile from Sumba. The gen­uine ones are re­ally rare so we trea­sure it im­mensely.” The Gor­rows own The Slow, a ho­tel, restau­rant and gallery in Canggu; thes­

Black Cat Speak Easy, Next door to Pretty Poi­son, Jalan Subak Canggu, Canggu, Kuta Utara; Hid­den Beach Bar,

Take the lit­tle dirt track op­po­site One Eyed Jack, Jalan Pan­tai Ber­awa C89; Quince, Jalan Raya Pan­tai Ber­awa 51, Ber­awa, Canggu; Spring, Jalan Raya Batu Bo­long 83c, Canggu, Kuta Utara, Bad­ing;; Canaan,

Kata­mama, Jalan Petitenget 51b, Seminyak; canaan­


Ubud Writ­ers & Read­ers Fes­ti­val

“I’m al­ways blown away by the fact that I live in a place where ar­ti­sanal crafts are alive and kick­ing; a place where you can or­der a bolt of hand-wo­ven fab­ric or live in a cot­tage with hand-carved doors and de­signer-style lights that are made to or­der up the road. “I was lucky enough to host a pop-up din­ner at

Gaya Ce­ramic last year, a supremely el­e­gant store that show­cases the cre­ative ge­nius of the Ital­ian own­ers, Mar­cello Mas­soni and Michela Fop­pi­ani. Their ceram­ics are of the high­est qual­ity while also be­ing sur­pris­ingly af­ford­able, and you’d be truly hard-pressed to find work as ex­cit­ing and beau­ti­ful as theirs.

“And then there’s the food. Ibu Susu Bar &

Kitchen is a re­fresh­ing ad­di­tion to Ubud’s food scene. I go for the beef rendang and stay for the ta­marind black cod. There’s also an in­ter­est­ing list of fizzies cour­tesy of Ba­li­nese owner Ke­tut Apri­nawan, a cocktail-maker ex­traor­di­naire who honed his skills in Mel­bourne.

“When my skin looks a lit­tle worse for tropical wear, I go straight to Asian Prophecy. Af­ter an hour, your skin is left pos­i­tively sparkling. I of­ten run to Tand­jung

Sari to chill and recharge, too. It’s been around since Mick Jag­ger was a mere lad but it’s still in daz­zling con­di­tion and over­flows with Old World charm.” DeNeefe is the founder and di­rec­tor of the Ubud Writ­ers & Read­ers Fes­ti­val (staged this year on 24-28 Oc­to­ber) and the Ubud Food Fes­ti­val. She also owns Casa Luna restau­rant and cook­ing school and In­dus in Ubud; ubud­writ­ers­fes­ti­

Gaya Ce­ramic, Jalan Raya Sayan, Ubud; gay­ac­e­ramic. com; Ibu Susu Bar & Kitchen, Jalan Mon­key For­est Ubud, Gian­yar;; Asian Prophecy, Jalan Raya Pen­gosekan, Mas, Ubud, Kabu­paten Gian­yar; asian­; Tand­jung Sari, Jalan Danau Tam­blin­gan 41, Sa­nur, Den­pasar; tand­jungsar­i­ho­

AN­THONY MCINERHENE­Y Deus Ex Machina In­done­sia

“When I moved to Bali with my fam­ily 12 years ago, Seminyak was the place to be; now the cen­tre of all that’s hip and hap­pen­ing has moved north along the coast to Canggu. Where will it be in five years? No one knows. Bali is chang­ing at a rate of knots.

“The Lawn is one of the smaller day clubs around. As the name sug­gests, it’s cen­tred on a big chunk of grass (al­though they re­cently re­placed it with ar­ti­fi­cial turf be­cause it was be­ing trod­den to death) and dot­ted with Ba­li­nese um­brel­las, un­der which they’ve scat­tered small ta­bles and ot­tomans. A pool takes up most of the beach frontage. It’s great for an arvo-un­wind beer or glass of wine; they have a full cocktail list, but a cleans­ing ale is some­times just what one needs.

“In quiet Umalas you’ll find the sweet lit­tle French bistro, O LaLa Bistron­omy, which opened late last year. It’s funny how we seek out pock­ets of Western cul­ture in Bali, and I use any friend who comes to visit as an ex­cuse to eat here. The chef, Fabrice Capron, serves fan­tas­tic com­fort food. Think duck à l’orange, lamb con­fit and, my favourite, par­men­tier de boeuf Bour­guignon. Then there’s 40 Thieves, a real ➤

“Where will Bali be in five years? No one knows. It’s chang­ing at a rate of knots.” An­thony McInerhene­y

cocktail bar. Hip-hop mu­sic plays to a mix of lo­cals, ex­pats and ad­ven­tur­ers in the know, and be­hind the bar it’s the crème de la crème of mixol­ogy.

“In the land of black-sand beaches, an un­crowded white-sand beach with snorkellin­g, warungs sell­ing the fresh­est seafood, cold drinks and as­sorted bric-a-brac pro­vides wel­come respite. And that’s Vir­gin Beach (its lo­cal name is Pan­tai Bias Pu­tih). It’s a cou­ple of hours’ drive from Canggu, so make it a week­end jaunt.

“When I yearn for green­ery and misty moun­tain morn­ings, I head to D’Wan Tea Moun­tain Side, on Bali’s sec­ond-high­est moun­tain, Gu­nung Batukaru. It’s the per­fect base for trav­el­ling to wa­ter­falls and Hindu tem­ples, and the sun rises in the huge val­ley sur­rounded by moun­tains: Gu­nung Batukaru, Batur, Abang and, of course, Agung.” McInerhene­y is the spe­cial projects man­ager of mo­tor­bike, surf and skate spe­cial­ist Deus ex Machina, with three out­lets in Bali: The Warung of Sim­ple Plea­sures, The Tem­ple of En­thu­si­asm, and at Potato Head in Petitenget; deuscus­ The Lawn, Jalan Pura Dalem, Balu

Ba­long, Canggu; thelawn­;

O LaLa Bistron­omy, Jalan Bum­bak

An­yar Kelod gang Carik 1, Umalas 2, Ker­obokan, North Kuta, Badung; olal­a­; 40 Thieves, Jalan Petitenget 7, Badung; Vir­gin Beach, Look for the signs in the vil­lage of Bug­bug, five kilo­me­tres east of Can­di­dasa; D’Wan Tea

Moun­tain Side, Jatiluwih, Penebel, Ta­banan


“Bali is where it all be­gan for Worn, so it’s a very spe­cial place for us. And even though we don’t live there any­more, it still very much feels like home. Places like The Slow are in­spir­ing. It’s a ho­tel first and fore­most, but it has the best cof­fee in Bali and won­der­ful art, too. There’s a very Los An­ge­les vibe – think down­town meets mod­ern Malibu. The table­ware at the ho­tel’s restau­rant, de­signed by co-founder Cisco Gor­row, is un­der­stated yet ut­terly mod­ern, much like The Slow it­self.

“For a thrilling din­ing ex­pe­ri­ence, head to Me­jekawi at Ku De Ta. The chefs, Aus­tralians Ben­jamin Cross and Stephen Moore, do an in­cred­i­ble tast­ing menu. It feels re­ally spe­cial but not stuffy.

“One foot in­side Body­works and you’d be for­given for think­ing you’d been trans­ported to Morocco.

With burnt orange walls and ter­razzo baths, it’s a true oa­sis amid the at-times fran­tic en­ergy of Seminyak – it also of­fers the best mani-pedi on the is­land. As for shop­ping, Bi­asa is the epit­ome of is­land luxe. The hand-printed sarongs, lo­cally made resin jew­ellery and easy-to-wear pieces in the soft­est In­dian cot­ton are a lit­tle bit Bali, a lit­tle bit Ital­ian and ev­ery bit de­sir­able.” King and Barnes are co-founders of Worn, an Aus­tralian fur­ni­ture, fash­ion and home­wares la­bel; worn­

The Slow, Jalan Batu Bo­long 97, Canggu; thes­; Me­jekawi, Jalan Kayu Aya 9, Seminyak;; Body­works, Jalan Kayu Jati 2, Petitenget; body­works­; Bi­asa, Jalan Raya Seminyak 34, Den­pasar; bi­ JAMES BROWN Mash

“I’ve been go­ing to Bali since 2011. It some­times gets a bad rap be­cause of the rapid devel­op­ment, but the spirit re­mains. I love the peo­ple, and the place is equally spe­cial – I’m con­stantly re­minded of that, whether rid­ing a moto be­side a rice paddy in the rain, coming across a wave or hunt­ing for the best babi gul­ing.

“A lot of the time in Bali, I crave an air-con­di­tioned ice­box. That’s Da Maria for me, al­beit one with clam gnoc­chi and co­to­letta. My favourite dish is the ar­rosticini – the su­per salty skew­ers re­mind me of be­ing in the back­streets of an Ital­ian vil­lage with a bun­dle of them doused in le­mon and wrapped in news­pa­per. At

Clear Café, mean­while, it’s all about juices – this place has the best juices, elixirs and shakes on the planet. The Ca­jun fish sand­wich with pineap­ple is also a must.

“Trop­i­cola Beach Club, my lat­est pro­ject, is sched­uled to open this month on Batu Belig Beach. With­out spoil­ing the sur­prise, it’s as if this place ex­isted in an­other time and place: co­conut oil melt­ing in the sun, siz­zling shell­fish over wood­fire. Think Et­tore Sottsass meets Slim Aarons on a Bali beach.

“Deus Ex Machina were onto some­thing when they opened The Tem­ple of En­thu­si­asm. It gave the world’s

best shapers a place to stay and make a few very swish boards. These days they host ex­hi­bi­tions for lo­cals and rolling stones. There’s a skate ramp out the back, and Sunday nights are real fun for a feed and a boo­gie.

“There are 17,508 is­lands in the In­done­sian ar­chi­pel­ago and Bali is just one of them, so you don’t need to throw the stone far to reach an un­de­vel­oped nir­vana. Bali Div­ing can take you div­ing with manta rays on Nusa Penida. I’ve been three times and seen lots of big and friendly rays ev­ery time. It’s epic. If you aren’t into div­ing, drive around Bali. It only takes eight hours and it’s breath­tak­ing.” Brown is a co-di­rec­tor of Mash, an Ade­laide-based de­sign stu­dio, known for its in­te­rior de­sign of Ade­laide restau­rant Africola and Mo­tel Mex­i­cola in Seminyak. Its lat­est pro­ject, Trop­i­cola Beach Club, opens soon; mashde­ Da Maria Bali, Jalan Petitenget 170, Den­pasar; damari­a­; Clear Café, Jalan Hanoman 8, Ubud, Kabu­paten Gian­yar; clearcafeb­; Trop­i­cola Beach

Club, Batu Belig Beach; trop­i­; The Tem­ple of

En­thu­si­asm, Jalan Batu Me­jan 8, Canggu; deuscus­toms. com; Bali Div­ing, Jalan By Pass Ngu­rah Rai, 46e Blan­jong, Sa­nur; ba­lidiv­


R e s t a u r a t e u r, D a M a r i a B a l i

“I’ve been go­ing to Bali for more than 25 years, but it changes so rapidly. I’m sure if I went next week there’d be 200 new restau­rants. Farine Sour­dough Bak­ery is a re­lax­ing start to the day. I hon­estly think they’re show­ing not only Bali but also the world how to bake bread. Farine’s chef, Steven Skelly, is the ex­ec­u­tive chef at Da Maria. He’s a leg­end at pass­ing on knowl­edge to the ever-grow­ing Ba­li­nese hos­pi­tal­ity com­mu­nity.

“We pro­duced our fash­ion la­bel, Ten Pieces, in Bali for quite some time be­cause of the amaz­ing street cul­ture. That laid-back surf, punk and rock ’n’ roll scene pro­vides so much in­spi­ra­tion and is re­ally blos­som­ing. Re­cently we made a pair of slides with a com­pany called

In­dosole, which makes shoes lo­cally out of re­cy­cled tyres. I’m re­ally in­trigued by Bali’s ur­ban­i­sa­tion. It’s pretty raw, but I love be­ing able to par­tic­i­pate in its growth.

“For quiet time, I like The Oberoi. The drinks might not be the new­est or hottest in town, but the old-school hos­pi­tal­ity is sec­ond to none. All those beau­ti­ful old waiters have been work­ing there for about 40 years.

“Bella Row­ell was my gen­eral man­ager when we opened Da Maria; she’s an in­dus­try veteran and has now opened Fish­bone Lo­cal. A lot of menus over­work things, but not this one. A piece of sus­tain­able fish on the grill with noth­ing but a salad and a slice of le­mon – that’s what I want to eat in the heat. And, as a bonus, they’re the only ones in Bali to stock our Goldy Gin.” Terzini is the restau­ra­teur be­hind Ice­bergs Din­ing Room & Bar, The Dol­phin Ho­tel, Da Orazio and Bondi Beach Pub­lic Bar in Syd­ney. His Bali restau­rant, Da Maria Bali, opened in 2016; damari­a­ Farine Sour­dough Bak­ery, Jalan Raya Pan­tai Ber­awa

23, Tibube­neng, Kabu­paten Badung; farine-sour­dough-bak­ery. busi­; In­dosole, in­; The Oberoi, Seminyak Beach, Jalan Kayu Aya, Den­pasar; oberoi­ho­; Fish­bone

Lo­cal, 117x Batu Bo­long, Canggu; fish­bone­lo­ ● G O U R M E T T R AV E L L E R

Clock­wise:The Lawn; Gaya Ce­ramic; Spring; Ibu Susu Bar & Kitchen.

Clock­wise from top left: Quince; Me­jekawi; 40 Thieves; The Slow own­ers Cisco and Ge­orge Gor­row; Farine Sour­dough Bak­ery; gnoc­chi, with clams, fer­mented chilli and pars­ley at Da Maria.

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