Since closing down Sage Restaurant at Mohamed Sultan Road, Chef Jusman So has moved to Dava Restaurant in the beautiful Ayana Resort in Bali. I have been a big fan of Chef Jusman since his days at Sage, so I made a point to visit Dava when I was staying in Jimbaran.
It was only when we were there for dinner then we found out that Chef Jusman So has recently stepped down from his position at Dava to oversee the development of the F&B establishments at the neighbouring new Hotel Rinba, which is Ayana’s sister property.
However, that did not stop us from enjoying ourselves. Right now you can still sample Chef Jusman So’s degustation menu (4-course for Rp 490,000/S$63, 6-course for Rp 620,000/S$80) as the resort has yet to appoint a new executive chef for Dava restaurant.
Opened by Chef Will Meyrick — who is also behind the famous Sarong Restaurant at Petitenget — MAMA San is an uber-trendy restaurant which serves Asian-inspired dishes. It is one of the most hyped about restaurants in Bali, and rightfully so.
Generally, most people are not receptive to the idea of spending so much on “fine dining” for Asian cuisine, yet at MAMA San, you do not feel that you are overpaying for street food as Meryick has managed to come up with a concept which provides the complete dining experience. It reinterprets and serves polished and modern Asian street food in an upmarket environment. Not an easy feat, that is for sure.
One of the best meals that I had in Bali during my recent trip was at Merah Putih, a classy restaurant that serves traditional Indonesian cuisine for the purists, and at the same time, dedicating another column in the menu to providing options for Indonesian food with a modern interpretation.
Indonesian cuisine is a communal affair, and this is reflected in Merah Putih’s offerings of dishes in small and large plates. The dining concept is actually inspired by the local nasi padang, where you have an array of dishes to choose form – hence the small plates to share. The owner told us that he created the restaurant because whenever someone asked him where they could go for Indonesian food in a nice setting, he did not have an answer as there was not many options. So he created the answer by conceptualising and building Merah Putih where you can enjoy the classic dishes and also discover something new.