Want a quick escape from the concrete jungle that we live in? Here’s one place that I’m very proud to introduce you to, where you can truly be transported to the island of Bali and let your hair down. Nestled at the NUS Law Campus at Bukit Timah is Blue Bali, where the front of the house is a charming colonial house dating back to 1935. Through these doors, you’ll be given access to one of the most exclusive and unique Bali-themed courtyard gardens. While Blue Bali has shifted to its current location 4 years ago, the restaurant has been around for almost a decade. Definitely a hidden gem for wonderful Indonesian food and to just kick back and relax.
Surrounded by lush greeneries, I was pleasantly surprised at the authentic set-up of traditional Javanese daybeds – how can this be in Singapore? Even the staff were dressed in traditional costumes!
According to the kind owner of Blue Bali, all the decor and furniture were brought in from Bali itself to recreate the Balinese culture. Impressive was an understatement until you see the garden in person.
Blue Bali Green Oasis Mocktail ($10) – If there is one green juice I could drink every day, it would be this! Minty, sweet and icy, this must be the best slushie I’ve had in the longest time. It’s one of those drinks which makes you raise your eyebrows in amusement at the unexpected deliciousness of a seemingly plain drink. A truckload of this please!
Some prawn crackers to start off the Balinese night! The chilli sauce on the side made the crackers extra special. Extremely fragrant with a nice kick of heat, you can be expected to request for extra servings of this sauce to go with the rest of the food.
Avocado Prawns ($18) – While this may not be a traditional Indonesian starter, it definitely helps to start off the meal with something fresh and earthy before the explosion of flavours and spices to come!
Gado Gado [Indonesian Vegetable Salad with Tofu & Peanut Sauce] ($13) – The gado gado comes in popiah rolls – a sophisticated fashion of having this traditional Indonesian dish I must say. What made this a winner was the extremely tasty peanut sauce. The intense aroma of peanut was outstanding for me, and even my mum who has a discerning taste for Indo food. The crunchiness of the fibres complemented the peanut sauce superbly.
Spicy Chicken and Pomelo Salad ($16) – This salad mirrors that of Thai cuisine, but with a twist. Instead of sour flavours, you could taste more peanut sauce within. Lots of shredded chicken with pomelo – great salad to refresh the palates.
Indonesian Rijsttafel Platter [Chicken Sambal, Sate Lilit, Fish Pepes, Lawar Kacang, Perkedel, Chicken Curry, Beef Rendang, Chicken Sate, Nasi Kuning] ($80 for 3 person) – Now, here comes the stars of the show! Over here at Blue Bali, they serve huge plates of food, communal style. For people like me who absolutely loves variety, this is the place to be. There are 2 platters in all that we tasted and first up is the poultry and meat platter. If you ask me, this could even be shared amongst a party of 4, which breaks down to just $20 per pax for a hearty meal! What a deal! Every single element on this plate was delicious – no kid. I especially love the chicken satays and the minced chicken on lemongrass sticks. Grilled to perfection, they release a smoky fragrance that is
Every single element on this plate was delicious – no kid. I especially love the chicken satays and the minced chicken on lemongrass sticks. Grilled to perfection, they release a smoky fragrance that is signature of a good grill. The chicken curry was another winner for me. I don’t usually prefer curry, but this Indonesian curry was a game-changer. The coconut curry aroma was distinct amidst the spices and went down well with the rice. Another special mention goes to the fish cake grilled within the banana leaves. The fish cake was similar to otah, but as it was shaped like a dumpling, the satisfaction of having the chunks of fish meat was simply happiness.
Bali Jimbaran BBQ Seafood Platter [Grilled Snapper, Succulent Sambal Cumi, Fresh Grilled Mussels, Sambal King Prawn, Bali Rice & Garden Salad] ($90) – Seafood lovers, look out! From a whole fish, to prawns and squid, it’s as good as seafood can get. More importantly, the seafood was fresh and the various sambal concoctions made this platter a show-stopper. It is pretty amazing how each seafood can have its own flavours – they certainly do not taste like they came out from the same pot! These 2 platters are crowd-pleasers for sure as it suits every taste and preference. Take a little break from the food with the crackers and soon, you’ll be raring to go again. 🙂
Blue Bali Dessert Platters ($28):
Lemongrass Pannacotta & Mixed Fruit Compote – A good pannacotta must be wobbly, creamy and beancurd-like. This achieved the 3 criteria and it was surprisingly light.
Pandan Cream Brulee with Mixed Berries Sticky Rice, Mango & Coconut Ice Cream – The pandan flavour was a fantastic twist to the usual brulee. Loved the coconut ice cream as well!
Deep fried Banana Spring Roll & Vanilla Ice Cream – This was my favourite of the dessert platter. The banana within the crispy spring roll skin was mushy and gooey, and that melted chocolate was a surprise find. It’s hard to stop at just one.
Blue Bali Brewhaus Beers $22.50/Jug (Bali Hour)
What makes Blue Bali even more special than it already is, is that they brew their own beers in the house! It’s very rare to find establishments who would put in the amount of effort and details like they would at Blue Bali. The dedication the owner has to his restaurant and the very same commitment to his customers really amazed me. I had the Pink Mamba, which is an exhilarating wheat beer infused with red dragon fruit. It certainly tasted different from the mass-market beers in bottles, as it was very smooth, without much bubbles and foam. Definitely worth a try here!
A short tour to Blue Bali’s very own beer brewery!
Blue Bali is no doubt a gem in Singapore. There’s something magical about this place, that makes me very fond of. If you’re ready to have a great time and make merry with your friends, Blue Bali will be your next destination.
One D Cluny Road
(behind NUS Bukit Timah Campus, opposite Law Faculty Eu Tong Sen Building)
Tel: 6733 0185