Bali Foodserye | Local-approved Warung Bu Umi

Wednesday, February 21, 2018

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It was late evening when we arrived in Bali, and I wanted so much to have Babi Guling for dinner. Unfortunately, all the places that serve it were already close, so we asked our hostel receptionist for a recommendation.

He pointed us to Warung Bu Umi. "Very delicious and very cheap," he said, holding three fingers up, with his thumb and index forming a circle to emphasize his statement.

Hey, like what any reasonable traveler would say: go where the locals eat.

Umi's is located just a ten-minute walk from Bedplus Hostel Seminyak where we stayed. You can find it on Google Maps and get walking directions. It's very easy to find.

At first glance, the place reminds me of a typical Filipino carinderia: kinda dingy, but still homey. It being roadside meant ubiquitous engine-revving.
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On one corner, there was a sink for washing hands. There's a small toilet on the other. A tarpaulin filled with scribbles of love for Bali and surprisingly wise notions hung on a wall. The kitchen was open, and the sound and scent of things cooking blanketed the air.
warung umi bali interior

wise grafittis

We made ourselves comfortable on plastic chairs, and immediately a woman approached us and handed us laminated menus. The place specialized in Javanese and Sumatran cuisine, the menu said. I was genuinely excited.
warung bu umi javanese sumatran

Our first meal in Bali comprised of ayam goreng – fried chicken (20,000 IDR, about Php77), and bebek goreng – fried duck (25,000 IDR, about Php96). Both were served with rice, cabbage, cucumber, string beans, spinach, and tempe.
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It was a simple meal. Nothing fancy. But we were satisfied. Umi's did not scrimp on the serving, and both chicken and duck were flavorful.

The next day, after going on a temple run across Bali, and failing again to get some Babi Guling, we ended up here. And we absolutely did not regret it.

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For our second time, we switched things up a bit and got Mie Goreng Aceh – fried noodles with beef (20,000 IDR, about Php77), and Nasi Goreng Aceh Sapi – fried rice with beef, so, basically tapsi (25,000 IDR, about Php96). We also ordered a chocolate frappe (12,000 IDR; about Php46).
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warung bu umi bali menu

The dishes were delicious. They tasted exactly like how I imagined Balinese food would taste like. Soulful and hearty. I guess most tourists agree as Westerners can often be seen hanging out in the place. Locals, too, of course – even late at night.

The frappe was a little diluted, tasted similar to Milo, but everything else made me forgave Umi for it.

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Umi's felt like your favorite aunt's kitchen. The dishes taste authentic. Foreign but homely. The owner is also very hands-on. The lady who hands us menus and totals our bill, I realized only on our second time, was, in fact, Umi herself.

What's more is that it's open until 3AM so you know where you're heading when you get the late-night Balinese craving.

Not only is the food very delicious and very cheap, Warung Bu Umi exudes warmth and humor. I could see myself hanging out here everytime I'm in Bali. I'm honestly counting it as one of our great finds.

Warung Bu Umi
Jl. Dewi Sri No.11, Legian, Kuta, Kabupaten Badung, Bali
Open daily from 9AM to 3AM
+62 878 6284 3000

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