Ten days into our latest Bali visit and we’re feeling a little crestfallen. The villas have been fantastic, the views beautiful, the culture abundant. But the food? Heavily seated on the disappointing side. As enormous fans of Asian cuisine, we’re crossing our fingers that we will find an Indonesian cuisine experience that lives up to the fantastic Balinese surroundings.
Thankfully, from the first bite at Kaum, we knew our foodie fortunes had changed for the better. Situated at Bali’s famous Potato Head Beach Club, Kaum’s upscale Indonesian is something you simply don’t want to miss. Kaum, meaning ‘clan’ in Indonesian, showcases ancient Indonesian ingredients and techniques, highlighting dishes from across the archipelago. And they do an excellent job of it.
The menu is refreshingly broad, and while it honors tradition it still feels deliciously modern. There are so many fantastic dishes that you might just need to visit twice to sate your appetite for this delectable Indonesian cuisine. Don’t miss the Babi Genyol, a Balinese fried braised pork cheek dish served with a spicy relish – it’s a rather fatty cut of pork, but packed with flavor. Their Nasi Goreng Babi is the best we tasted on the island, and the Ayam Berantakan, originating from Aceh, was also superb.
While wine options on the island are admittedly dire, Kaum has a rare local gem on its list that pairs spectacularly with its food – Bali’s own Isola rosé. Definitely a great match for the spicy cuisine (and a great value choice too). Kaum’s cocktail list is also truly fab and shouldn’t be missed – we loved the cocktails both upstairs in the dining room and downstairs at Potato Head.
We also tried a flame grilled chicken dish that’s yet to hit the menu – it definitely impressed with its fragrant marinade. Our dessert of Javanese Kolak Aneka Bija Salak (sweet potato, pumpkin and banana dumplings in a sweet coconut milk syrup) was surprisingly fantastic too – we’re not always in love with Asian desserts, but this was a winner.
If you want a true taste of Indonesia and the opportunity to try many regional dishes spanning the length an breadth of the Indonesian archipelago, you can’t miss Kaum during your Bali sojourn. Whether it’s a night out or the conclusion to a relaxing day at Potato Head Beach Club, we’re sure you’re going to love it.