In Indonesia, a warung (or ‘waroeng‘) is a small street-side stall or hole-in-the-wall shop that sells food (and occasionally, daily necessities). Think of it as the neighbourhood cafe where you can eat cheap local food and catch up on the latest gossip with your neighbours.

When AB and I visited Bali for the first time last year, we stayed in Ubud for five days. During this period, we ate at warungs most of the time.

Aside from booking our guesthouse accommodation, we had not planned or researched much else ahead of time. Some of the places we ate at were found online while in a cafe with free wi-fi, others were recommended by people we met in Bali.

Here are our favourite warungs:

MADE BECIK WAROENG

Where: 6 Jalan Tirta Tawar Br Kutuh Kaja, Ubud-Gianyar. Made’s road-side restaurant looks out to paddy fields and is less than 10 minutes by car from Ubud centre and not far from the Ubud Botanical Gardens.

Made Becik Waroeng @ 6 Jl Tirta Tawar Br Kutuh Kaja, Ubud-Gianyar01k64

We ate: Excellent Indonesian food with a contemporary touch. The grilled dishes – especially the ribs – are a must-try.

Made Becik Waroeng @ 6 Jl Tirta Tawar Br Kutuh Kaja, Ubud-Gianyar07 - iga babi bakar (pork ribs), satek64

Good to know: We walked some 4km from our guesthouse in central Ubud to Made Becik Waroeng. For the most part, we were on a dimly-lit road which had several dogs (at least 20 in total!) that would suddenly emerge from the shadows and bark at us. As we passed each and every one of them, they would growl and I could feel their eyes follow us.

It was quite a nerve-wrecking pre-dinner experience. I was afraid that one will go nuts, bite me in the a** and give me rabies! We called for a taxi to bring us back after dinner 😉

Made Becik Waroeng @ 6 Jl Tirta Tawar Br Kutuh Kaja, Ubud-Gianyar03k64

WARUNG SAYA

Where: Jalan Sugriwa, near Jalan Raya Ubud
Open 1100-0000
+62-857-9259-1969

We ate: Hearty Indonesian ayam kecap chicken in soya bean sauce and Indian-style badal jaam eggplant with tomato and yogurt

Good to know: Serves only dinner. Reservations strongly recommended as this is a a tiny restaurant (seats around 6 people). Small and excellent menu that changes every other day and offers Indonesian, Thai and Indian dishes. It’s a one-man show – Amier cooks everything on order, which means that the food is freshly prepared and you should be prepared to wait a while for your food (around 30-40 minutes). It will be worth it!

Warung Saya @ 8 Jln Gautama01k64

WARUNG RAI PASTI

Where: There’s no address. If you’re walking from Ubud centre, keep left on Monkey Forest Road, it’s very near “Three Monkeys” café. Keep a lookout for it as it has a narrow frontage.

We ate: Tempeh goreng, nasi campur and babi guling (suckling pig) were excellent. The latter comes direct from Rai Pasti’s sister, Ibu Oka – which is famous for its babi guling. Be sure to go early and you can enjoy some delicious suckling pig without having to wait in line.

Warung Rai Pasti @ Monkey Forest Rd03 - babi gulingk64

Good to know: Good place to go to for Balinese classics at an affordable price. Try to get a place at the back of the restaurant, looking out to the paddy fields.

Warung Rai Pasti @ Monkey Forest Rd01 - Nasi Campurk64

DAYU’S WARUNG

Where: 28X Jalan Sugriwa

We ate: Tasty organic food served with brown rice. The spices of the nasi campur special with Balinese ayam betutu (chicken steamed in coconut) were well-balanced.

Dayu's Warung @ 28X Jl Sugriwa01 - nasi campur special (Be'tutu chickern beruk - steam in coconut)k64

The next, and final, recommendation is not a warung. But as this will probably be my only food-related post from this Bali trip, I’m including a coffee shop that is just a few doors from our guest house:

SENIMAN COFFEE STUDIO

Where: Jalan Sriwedari, Ubud

Seniman Coffee Studio @ Jln Sriwedari02k64

We drank: Excellent coffee served with water in a recycled glass (bottle) and a tasty kueh kueh. You just need to figure your way through the complicated flow chart-style menu (which can be mind-boggling for those who have not had their caffeine fix)!

Seniman Coffee Studio @ Jln Sriwedari01k64

Good to know: Seniman roasts the coffee beans on its premises (across the street from the cafe). You can buy their roasted coffee beans and grounds.

Seniman Coffee Studio @ Jln Sriwedari04-5k64

This is one trendy joint – I love their modified rocking chairs made using plastic kopi-tiam chairs! Can someone make me one?

Seniman Coffee Studio @ Jln Sriwedari03k64

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11 replies on “Where to eat in Bali: Warungs + a coffee shop

  1. You should tell AB that if you get bitten it is like snake venom and he has to act accordingly. Or you could do what I did and have a course of anti-rabies jabs. I think I had 3. There is no vaccine, as I understand it, but the jabs give you a lot more time to get to a hospital. I have had them when going to remote places like PNG. The village dogs in HK can be pretty scary and there are plenty of feral dogs here too, some friendly, some not. I confess I have never been to Bali – I always feel it must be too touristy but maybe one day.

    1. I’m not sure if I know what one is supposed to do when one gets bitten by a snake. The film/TV industry tells me you should try to curb the blood from flowing further and suck out the venom?! It’s funny that I never went to Bali all the time when I was living in Singapore but only when I moved to Europe. I wasn’t interested in visiting Bali as I thought it is very touristy (it is) and I’m not a beach-body. What I didn’t realise was how unique and fascinating the Balinese culture is. We were also lucky that our visit happened to coincide with the Galungan festival and the royal cremation of the late wife of the palace heir of Ubud (http://bit.ly/1qA96xK)!

      1. I think sucking out the venom is recommended but I’m not sure about rabies 😱. The best Indonesian blogger I found was Lottie Nevin. She and Pete had a place in Bali and thoroughly debunked my impressions. It’s still not really on my bucket list though. Lisbon next.

        1. Her blog is great fun to read. I’ve not been to Lisbon though we drove past it en-route from Porto to the mountains and the Algarve region in the south. It was a fun trip – all we did was buy a pair of return tickets (Paris-Porto) and a Lonely Planet Portugal guidebook. We pieced together the trip as we drove across the country, in between eating lots of salty bacalhau and (me) getting carsick from the winding mountain roads.

  2. Hole-in-the-wall and simple mom and pop food establishments serve some of the best food I’ve ever eaten.

    1. Casual eateries serving good and cheap food is something I miss about living in Singapore. That is not to say that there’s nothing similar in Brussels but there are few of these and most of them are either serving sandwiches/salads or traditional Belgian (which can be heavy).

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