My final eating place just before we headed off to the airport was Warung Sulawesi. This was another Balinese dining place found through Hendra’s resourcefulness. Hidden behind other restaurants on the main road, one cannot really tell that an eatery resides behind the walls. But through keen tongues and by word of mouth, this café is no newcomer. On a closer study, it seems like Westerners residing permanently in Bali love this place. I can see why. With plants everywhere and a retro fit to the place, it looked simple yet substantial. The food etiquette here is simple. Stroll along the bain-marie, pick the things you want and by the end of it, you receive a tag with the price on it. Should you need more, rock up the counter and just add on before grabbing another price tag.
Grilled chicken, soy bean curd and a fried chicken
It was the final meal of the trip and no one was holding back. I for starters picked 5 dishes at a cost of $R32,000. All of which reminded me of classic Indonesian favorites from Perth, just that they were prepared one notch higher in their home ground. The Ayam Panggang or grilled chicken was full of flavor from the marinade and spices. More importantly, it was tender unlike its deep fried counter part that came rock hard with a whiff of turmeric. The Tofu Kecap Manis was another stunning dish which almost everyone had. Full of rich flavor from the deep caramelization of the sauce giving it it a sticky-sweet consistency that was extremely addictive. Simple but yummy.I also ordered a vegetable stir fry and the Telur Belado. Telur Belado is an Indonesian egg dish that is pretty much hard-boiled that is deep fried and tossed in a sweet chili sauce. At first I was shocked when I bit into something extremely spicy and started to blame the egg. But it was not long before I realized that it was my cabbage stir-fry with what I initially thought was chopped up beans and spring onions but were actually green chilies. Almost died there!
The concept of Nasi Campur is very much like the Chinese’s Economy Mixed Rice. There is something for everyone. Regardless of whether you are a vegetarian, or a bodybuilder trying to bulk up, the Nasi Campur is simply fantastic. On my plate today there was literally every single flavor except bitterness. It was sweet, sour and salty with a good hint of chili. Together, they are form amazing alchemy. Mixed all together, just a few or simply enjoy each by themself. Whatever you chose, it was ensured satisfaction. So in the end, what really mattered was the Warung’s ability to deliver delicious dishes for selection. At Warung Sulawesi, that was exactly what they did and the Nasi Campur selection was every bit flavorful. Was this a posh, squeaky clean place that will fit into everyone’s good book? I doubt so! Despite its lush garden, the random mix and match furniture was old and the whole place was rather run down. But in the eating world of Bali, it was clear that if you are not fine dining, you will be in Warungs like this. For me, a curious eater, I could not bother much and found it to be rather substantial as mentioned earlier.