#BuroGetaway: Playful flavours aplenty at Sangsaka, Bali
One of the best things about travelling to a foreign land is of course, getting a taste of the local food. During our recent #BuroGetaway, the team made our way to Sangsaka, a restaurant set within the Seminyak-Kerobokan neighbourhood that serves up modern Indonesian dishes with a twist.
Located on a quiet lane along Jalan Pangkung Sari No.100, Sangsaka is a cosy little eatery and every bit Instagram-worthy but truth be told, you'll need a really good camera if you want to induce the holiday envy of friends back home. Lucky for us, we were armed with the latest Samsung Galaxy S8+, which was our saving grace in low light photography. Foodies will know how hard it is to get the perfect shot in this condition. But with a 12MP Dual Pixel sensor and the bright F1.7 lens, our photos came out crisp and vivid.
Sangsaka is headed by executive chef Kieran Morland, who also looks after Merah Putih—one of the top restaurants in Bali. For Sangsaka, he has developed a simple menu that changes weekly based on the produce and ingredients available in the market. As such, the dishes are a delight to the tastebuds and a showcase of his culinary excellence. You get to choose from the 'Small Plates' selections as appetisers and 'Large Plates' for your mains. While for those who would like to be surprised, the 'Tasting Menu' option with nine dishes over five courses would be the way to go.
We worked up quite an appetite screening through the menu for what was on offer that night at the casual dining spot. Local items sounded familiar yet foreign in taste. The menu had been made memorable with a highlight of local ingredient used in each dish. Among the eight of us, it was easy to pick out a varied selection of Small and Large Plates to try.
For starters, we partook in a platter of amuse-bouche that included beef rendang croquet, eggplant balado on squid ink crackers and sambal tuna on cucumber. Needless to say, our tastebuds were intrigued and it was an enticing prelude of what's to come. We were then taken on a culinary journey with the Small Plates that fused unassuming ingredients such as such as baby corn, coconut and kemangi or lemon basil with sumptuous produce such as yellow fin tuna, yabbies and pork belly among others.
The 'Tongkol' is a dish that features yellow fin tuna with green papaya, herbs and calamansi. It's akin to a refreshing salad with a zesty flavour. The 'Kembang Kol' has an interesting texture with roasted cauliflower, shallots, tempe, coconut and leek. While the 'Mie Udang' is a modern take of the classic Indonesian mee goreng with homemade noodles tossed in prawn sambal. Not forgetting, the 'Buntut' (not what you think!) presents tender pieces of oxtail rendang in full bodied taste.
The mains in the Large Plates were also deftly executed to infuse flavours that are delicious to the eyes, nose and tongue combined. Sangsaka's unique dishes are all prepared using woods and charcoal to bring out that distinct flavour of Indonesian cuisine.
We thoroughly enjoyed sinking our teeth into the 'Bebek Medan' and 'Pipi Sapi Rujak'. The former is lacquered duck breast cooked with star anise and red cabbage, while the latter is tender beef cheek glazed in Javanese sauce on a bed of nasi jagung. Another stellar dish is the 'Celeng Guling', which is suckling pig cooked with a spice paste, pumpkin puree and lentils. The 'Udang Kipas' had Sumatran slipper lobster that was fresh and juicy, served with long beans, cassava and smoked potatoes.
To cap off our Indonesian dinner, desserts were a medley of sweet and tangy palate cleansers. A firm favourite is the Timorese honey cream with mango and mangosteen ice that had a refreshing bite with every spoonful. We heaved a sigh of contentment ending the evening on such wonderful notes. We left Sangsaka that night with our tummy full and spirits soaring high.
Sangsaka is located at Jalan Pangkung Sari No.100, Kerobokan, Bali. It is open from Mondays–Sundays, 6pm–12am. For more information, visit sangsakabali.com
All images were taken using the Samsung Galaxy S8+.