A Modern Classic

PASSION heads to Kunyit Restaurant at The Anvaya Beach Resort to taste its Balinese classic signature dishes. 

I can’t think of a better place to dine, relax, and people watching in Tuban than the elegantly furnished Kunyit Restaurant. Elevated from the street, the Balinese and Indonesian restaurant provides a nice al fresco experience despite being in the heart of the hustle and bustle of Kuta. The Bali Aga inspired contemporary decor is a delight to the eyes, while the seating arrangements provide enough intimate space for romantic or group dinner.

As I arrive for lunch during the sweltering afternoon, a waitress in white kebaya attire welcomes me and gives me a seat in the coolest corner inside. A cold towel later, I am ready to order and satisfy my curiosity about the signature dish that Kunyit Restaurant is famous for: Megibung. True to the Balinese style of dining, Megibung shows the importance of togetherness in Balinese way of life. Traditionally, this dining occasion brings people to sit together and share the food from one piece of large banana leaf or a plate. It is believed that Megibung tradition originated from Karangasem, where one of its kings asked his troops to eat and share the food in celebration after winning the war. 

“Megibung brings people closer together and break down social barriers. You start and end the feast at the same time, as well as sharing everything,” explains Ketut Suwantra, the Chef de Cuisine of Kunyit Restaurant. Before starting the meal, I am asked to place my hand on a bowl. Then, a waitress pours water from a terracotta kettle onto my hands. The hand washing ritual is a pleasant beginning for a gourmet feast which is served on top of wooden dulang, a mounted platter on a pedestal.

The dulang is heaped with a tantalizing assortment of meats, satays, and vegetables with accompanying white and red rice, crackers and spicy sambals. Eagerly, I stand up from my chair and marvel at the orchestra of Balinese delicacies that must have taken hours to prepare. Giddily taking a little bit of everything and pile it up on my plate. I begin the feast with a bite of the sate lilit, a minced chicken satay and the other fish, beef, and chicken satay bathed in rich peanut sauce. Adding few spoonfuls of organic red Balinese rice with sambal goreng, I mix them all together with ayam betutu and a savoury skewered shrimp marinated in spices. The grilled fish with raw shallot sambal is my favourite, especially when eaten with a spoonful of heart-warming komoh or fish broth. The Tenganan Megibung is a delicious way to get acquainted with the flavourful Balinese cuisine. 

A special mention needs to be made for the bebek goreng kunyit, a signature crispy fried duck of the restaurant. “We process the meat three times. After blanching, we boil it with basa genep for one and a half hours, coat the duck with flour and spices, and then deep-fry it,” explains the chef who determines to continuously looking and experiment with new Indonesian recipes. I end the meal with a warm bowl of perfectly cooked bubur injin, black glutinous rice porridge that tasted just like how my mother cooks it. That’s what I enjoy the most at Kunyit Restaurant, a combination of opulent and modern space with a deep respect of Indonesian heritage.

Jalan Kartika Plaza, Tuban
P : +62 361 759991