Nestled in the tropical Balinese forest, Ubud is a must-see little gem. It’s a town rich in history and tradition, permeated by a timeless and ancient spirituality, enriched by the colors, sounds and scents of common daily life. Ubud has also become a buzzing culinary center, with some top restaurants.
Named the best restaurant in Indonesia in 2017 and 49th best restaurant in Asia, Locavore is not simply a dining venue: it’s an unforgettable culinary adventure. Chefs Ray and Eelke will guide you through delicate and unique dishes, prepared with locally sourced seasonal ingredients. They have two menus – Locavore and Herbivore, for vegetarians – where every dish is paired with an original cocktail. Make sure to book way in advance, and enjoy the exquisite food journey.
Another gem from the Locavore team, Nusantara opened its doors in Ubud in 2017. Since then, it’s been bringing joy to tables and happiness to diners. The Balinese chef Putu has created a menu that celebrates the variety of the Indonesian cuisine, through authentic flavors, locally sourced ingredients and traditional recipes. The ambiance is casual and fosters the culture of “sharing” dishes.
Can you imagine sipping on some delicious homemade sangria on a wooden terrace, overlooking the lush Balinese jungle? That’s The Sayan House in a nutshell. A dreamy restaurant and bar proposing unique Japanese-Latin fusion dishes, accompanied by a breathtaking view on the Ayung river gorge. Pro-tip: going at sunset (around 5 and 6 pm), tops up your drinks with golden light and a dreamy ambiance.
An absolute gem of a place located in Sayan, northwest Ubud. Their mission is to offer “food that loves you back.” Well, they do: everything they prepare is 100% plant-based and locally sourced from their permaculture garden. Also, they have a yoga studio named the Moksa Dojo, meaning ’place of enlightenment’, surrounded by lush tropical nature. What could be better than a yoga class followed by a mouthwatering vegan/veggie meal?
At Hujan Locale, chef Will Meyrick enchants his guests with an elegant fine dining experience intertwined with local tastes and cuisine. There’s also a dedicated cocktail bar area, with super comfy armchairs overlooking the buzzing little street. Here, the talented bartenders create unique mixes of happiness, like the Bali-famous and delicious Coconut Mojito.
For the meat and steak lovers, this is a must-go when in Ubud. Located in the town center, hidden off a turn of Pengosekan Road, Batubara looks and feels like the busy kitchen of an Argentinian family. Pablo, the owner, will welcome and guide you through the best choices of dishes, steaks and wines. What a journey.
Opened by the same owners of The Elephant in April 2018, Dumbo is all about wood-fired Italian food, 100% vegetarian. But there’s more. They have a coffee lab and an amazing cocktail bar. From breakfast to dinner, through cheeky aperitivos (Italian style happy hours) you can taste the freshness of the products, sourced by their permaculture garden and grown in compost-enriched and spring-fed soils in north-central Bali. Also, 1% of all profits are donated to orangutan conservation in Indonesia. Food for good at its best. Do try their fried zucchini flowers.
Restaurant, Hotel Restaurant, Italian, French, $$$
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For those with a craving for classic Italian and French cuisine, Kubu is the spot to be. Located on the edge of the Ayung River, in the Ritz Carlton resort, diners are welcomed to a fairytale-like restaurant, where the tables are placed in wooden cocoon and nests, which look like they are floating on the sacred river below. The ambiance is very romantic and the degustation menu exquisite.
Guided by its motto “powered by plants – made for people,” Zest Ubud is doing a great job fostering that vital connection between humans and nature. Their location is breathtaking, overlooking the majestic trees of the Campuhan Hill. Their menu is fantastic, offering non-conventional dish names with an explosion of taste. A perfect place to hang out from breakfast to dinner.
With low yellow lighting and comfy seats, Sage is perfect for both a sit-down meal and a quick bite. Their chai coconut latte and vegan banana bread are perfect companions, while their burgers and burritos are known to move diners to tears of joy. The ambiance is cozy and the staff are super attentive. Ideal for a big group dinner, as they have a large central table.