Gourmet Bali – Barbacoa


By Louise Newsham

There really is nothing quite like a traditional barbecue. When else do friends gather around a smoking flame, cooking juicy cuts of  meat and seafood over a smouldering, charcoal fire? Knives and forks are traded in for sticky fingers, and charred, smokedfinishes are encouraged not shunned. Although Australia may be the most famous nation for sticking another shrimp on the barbie, it is in  South America where this casual feasting tradition has been truly honed. And that’s where Barbacoa comes in. Barbacoa is Bali’s fiery new restaurant that recently popped up in the potpourri of restaurants along Petitenget. As its name suggests (it means “barbecue” in Spanish) Barbacoa is dedicated to wood fires, charcoal grills and loads of smoke. It brings together the sights, smells and flavours of rural Latin America, then serves it all up in a huge rustic-chic warehouse, retrofitted in a style that Melbourne’s trendiest hipsters would be proud of. The 120-seat restaurant has all the elements you expect from a grill, like a giant open fire crisping the skin of a whole pig (head and all), to decorative cow skins framing the red brick walls and wrought iron accents. But
ladies, don’t be put off by this rugged, masculine description, because actually, there is a very chic feel to Barbacoa too. Think vintage leather banquettes, colourful Mediterranean-style floor tiles and flickering candles made from cute, recycled jars. It is urban, it is stylish and we are totally hooked.

Barbacoa – Best Dessert

They may be renowned for their smoky barbecue, but Barbacoa proves they can do the sweet stu!too. Inspired by the traditional Argentinean recipe, Barbacoa’s flan is baked for three whole hours at a low temperature, making it especially creamy and super rich. It is a little bit like a crème caramel, but instead of milk and cream, Barbacoa uses condensed cream and evaporated milk, making it even thicker and smoother. It cuts like butter but still manages to hold its form, then in the mouth, it feels like a creamy,
sweet cloud. On top of the flan base, a wonderful caramel cuts through the richness of each bite. It comes glazed with white wine and vanilla, transforming the typical flan flavour to something even more luxurious and totally moreish.

Barbacoa – Best Cocktails

Barbacoa may be known for its very Latin American cuisine, but Bali’s coolest barbecue restaurant is also one
of the hippest cocktail digs in town, and their Frozen Margarita is like no other we’ve tried before. Forget all of your preconceptions about a frozen margie, like the pre-made, giant jugs of slush, because at Barbacoa, they make theirs fresh with $rm, frozen lime juice, a drizzle of sweet Agave syrup, a dash of triple sec and of course, a generous helping of tequila. It has just the right amount of citrus,just the right kick of alcohol and it’s made extra !u”y with a whip of egg whites that let the gooey Agave seep into every sip. #ereis one more secret ingredient involved, but the recipe is strictly held under lock and key, so you’ll just have to try it yourself to see if you can work out what it is.


Just weeks after it opened in November of last year, Barbacoa with its striking glass
front and timbered décor was already the muy caliente new place to go, buzzing with diners.
Fast forward to now and Barbacoa is not only still buzzing (the restaurant fl oor fills up fast for
dinner) but it has firmly cemented itself amongst Greater Seminyak’s “Bermuda Triangle” of world-class
restaurants. Amongst its eclectic crowd of diners, choosing to eat here are an impressive clan of
off-duty chefs (based here and abroad) and discerning hospitality heavyweights.
This is no mean feat but not surprising, given that its Executive Chef and main creative force is
an ex-chef from London’s highly acclaimed Michelin-starred Nobu
Restaurant. Australian Adam Dundas-Taylor is part of a growing wave of chefs with heavyweight credentials hitting these shores.
The culinary concept at Barbacoa is rare for Bali – authentic Latin
American dishes originating from Spain, Argentina, Peru and Mexico, respectfully modernized and tweaked for western palettes,
created with distinctive cooking techniques and infused with subtle twists.
“Barbacoa” translates as “barbecue,” which is key here. As if to underline the point, at the main
entrance next to the open kitchen are sizzling open-style grills and ovens, unashamedly visible. This includes a horizontal grilling contraption that resembles a Spanish inquisition torture instrument (with a pig carcass strung-up…vegetarians look away now) – an Argentinean Asado, for traditional grilled meat dishes.

Jalan Petitenget No. 14, Kerobokan
(0361) 739-253

Top 3 New Restaurants in Bali

It’s a true honor that Shareen Wong of The Singapore Weekender, pointed Barbacoa out as one of the Top 3 New Restaurants in Bali. The articles is also available at the website of The Weekender. Below you can find the actual article, plus a snapshot of the printed version:

Top 3 New Restaurants in Bali

You May Have Been To Kudeta In Bali Or Had Seafood On The Beach In Jimbaran. Time For New Discoveries! Bali Is One Of Asia’s Top Dining Destinations
By Shareen Wong
Chic accommodation, stylish boutiques and a never-ending array of affordable new restaurants. For a ‘travel-holic’ foodie like me, it’s paradise.

On my recent trip to Bali, I was determined to eat only at new establishments, which was really tough as I have many old favourites. I’m glad I did, because many more fabulous eateries have popped up and here’s my pick for the Top 3.

This place is so new, its website is still under construction but it is already getting rave reviews!

If you enjoy a spot of barbecue and love your meats, head to Barbacoa and try their suckling pig and slow-roasted pork.

The grill is a sight to behold and the place has a great vibe. Call ahead for reservations. It is only open for dinner.



Gelato Love by The Yak

At Barbacoa, we carefully selected our dessert menu and put a lot of love into the mixture of quality ingredients and preparations. The Yak did notice it, and wrote a snappy but very nice article about our ice cream! Go read it on The Yak website, or below:


While not the most obvious choice for an ice cream, take a step out of your comfort zone and head to Barbacoa to try something different. The ice cream sandwich here is a marvel of technique, and perfectly balanced flavours and textures. A smooth vanilla ice cream studded with home made honeycomb crunch, and piled between two whisper-thin sugary wafers is a treat to satisfy adults and children alike. Their latest blast of flavor however comes complete with a little chemistry and theatre in the mix. Flavoured creams blast-frozen with liquid nitrogen at the table, and then served up in home made waffle cones is bound to get the smart set chattering. Smoother than ice cream and in flavours that really have no limit. Expect the unexpected and if the rest of the menu is a guide, this will be fun and fabulous.

All Fired Up by The Yak

Wow, great article by The Yak Online! We feel very honored that Barbacoa is marked as ‘a keeper’. Read the full article that was written below. If you want to the full article on the website of The Yak, just click: The Yak

All fired up

Barbacoa brings the flavour of South America to Bali

I’M going to go out on a limb here and say that Barbacoa is a keeper.

The 120-seat South American fusion restaurant is new and fresh, the food is fine and the cocktail menu is enough to keep us hanging around, long after we have gleefully consumed their homemade honeycomb ice cream sandwiches.

Somehow the locally produced sustainable materials, including a huge area tiled in beautiful hand-made local tiles, has blended perfectly with a South American sensibility, complete with black wrought iron detailing, to create an atmosphere that sells us the best of both.

The location is pretty as well. Opposite Sardine, up the road from Metis on Jl Petitengett, Barbacoa enjoys a fabulous view over rice fields at the back where a wide terrace is the perfect spot to sample some of those high-end tequila type drinks before heading into dinner.

Without a doubt the highlight here is the wood-fire built beside the kitchen where a classic asado has been created. This involves a whole beast being splayed and cooked by indirect heat for hours and hours. Resulting in the main attraction on this menu, succulent roasted meat with a skin so crisp you can almost hear the crunch. It is a flavourful meat lover’s dream come true.

“Originally we set out to do an Argentinean concept restaurant but the availability of fresh, quality produce didn’t lend itself, so we branched out and decided to include a range of classic South American styles that kind of tango together,” says chef/partner and currently General Manager, Adam Dundas-Taylor.

Formerly at Jamie Oliver’s Restaurant 15, this guy has the creds. He also worked at Nobu in London, he’s worked for a few stars as well, including Elton John, Kate Moss, the Parker-Bowles family, and ended up heading up his own catering company based in Bondi Beach.

His approach to food is simple; it has to be fresh, simple and high quality. We get it. He also has a thing about cocktails and brings the expertise of his partners to call. Mixologist Kieron Prenter is the man behind the cocktail bar and clearly has a great love of top shelf tequila as there is a dedicated tequila terrace upstairs.

Margaritas head the list and starring on the menu is their signature chocolate margarita. The wine cellar is another highlight of Barbacoa and the list is growing. The other two partners are Consulting chef, Sean Prenter and fashionable guy about Bali, Peter Zuitton, who all bring something to the table that is fresh and full of personality.

Food though is what restaurants are about and this one has lots to say.

Despite being a meat-driven concept, there are some vegetable dishes on the menu that are full of flavor and worthy of a meal unto themselves. Portion sizes here are big and the prices are very reasonable with many dishes under the $10 mark and only two that come out over $20: the asado and the 250gram rib-eye steak. Both are big enough to share. The concept of this menu is a shared table experience so diners can order a sampling and pass them around.

Vegetable dishes include the unlikely charred baby carrots served with parsley, lemon and maple vinaigrette. This method is a classic apparently, frankly I had only ever seen a sad demonstration in my own kitchen, while this one is delicious. Fried cauliflower with cumin, chickpeas, pine nuts and raisins is vaguely Indian but we didn’t care and the green beans with anchovy butter, lemon and oregano is still haunting me.

Adam is a keen fan of anchovy (perhaps that Jamie Oliver influence?) and though I am not, I have to admit there’s nothing fishy about his dishes. He has some chocolate-anchovy truffles on the dessert menu as well, perhaps a few of those margaritas might lend me some Latino courage to try them.

Our feast centred around vegetables and the eight-hour lamb which well and truly lived up to the hype; juicy and falling apart with skin that was so good your skinniest friends would be hoovering it.

The signature dish is the suckling pig cooked in the pit which was not on the menu the night we ate at Barbacoa but I will be going back for that. Beside this we were convinced to try another of their signature dishes, charcoal octopus with chorizo and crispy polenta. The dish features big knobs of fresh octopus, charred and then bathing in all those salty juices, I would never have ordered it but I’m glad it arrived.

Despite the fact that they gave us half portions, we were already sporting bellies that a Columbian drug lord would be proud of, and then came dessert. It isn’t often that you find a restaurant that does everything well and I will single this out as a fabulous ending. A three-hour pudding turned out to be a rich, smooth baked custard bathed in caramel, while the ice cream sandwich that my guest ordered was perfection without the stick. Two thin wafers surrounded a rich creamy ice cream studded with homemade honeycomb. We’re still talking about it.

Barbacoa is the source of the word barbecue and there’s a whole lot of fire happening here, hot food and cool interiors; a beautiful breezy terrace, the tequila terrace upstairs and a large air-conditioned dining room with a central bar, open kitchen, lots of worn leather banquettes and a whole heap of style.

We came, we ate everything, we drank in style and we left happy.

HelloBali Magazine about Barbacoa

The well-known magazine HelloBali, wrote a very interesting article about Barbacoa on their website. According to them, Barbacoa ‘has all the right vibes’ – now, those are some nice words! Go read the full article below, or on their website, along with some nice pictures to see: HelloBali


If you’re a regular Petitenget prowler, you won’t have overlooked this restaurant, which goes by the name of Barbacoa. Sure, we’ve heard of many rustic restaurants in Bali these last two years. But this one is in a league of its own. Unlike the usual feminine chic-rustic designs I’ve come across, Barbacoa has a more robust vibe to it with the significant use of elements like wood, red bricks, cow skin hanging on the wall, and an outstanding open-fire grill. And then there are the darling points, like the Mediterranean patterned tiles, the Acapulco chairs, and the priceless backyard rice field.

Heavily inspired by food from South American countries like Argentina, Peru and Mexico, all the recipes here are built from scratch. The food menu is only a page long, but each of the dishes packs a refreshing punch. The best way to enjoy Barbacoa’s finest is to order as many dishes as you can and share them with friends. Go back-to-back snapper with a fresh take on a Mexican favourite – battered snapper taco with mango (Rp.75,000), and Peruvian style snapper ceviche with kicking bites of orange chilli, black pepper, red onion pickle, and of course coriander (Rp.95,000). The charcoal octopus with crispy polenta and chorizo (Rp.95,000) and Spanish potatoes with garlic aioli (Rp.60,000) are sublimely rich in flavour. If like me you can’t pass a grill without having your carnivore instincts roused, don’t miss the Asado – that’s barbeque – of the day, with the option of either Australian lamb or pork (Rp.190,000). I tried the lamb, and it was simple yet gloriously buttery in taste. Sweeten the experience with the rice pudding (Rp.50,000), adorned with dates and almonds, and vanilla bean and white wine sauce.

Barbacoa takes pride in its tequila selections – from Jose Cuervo to Patron. But if you’re more into wine or rum (they have Ron Zacapa here), or cocktails, they still cater to your needs. Try the jalapeno margarita (Rp.95,000) to jumpstart the night.

in a nutshell
With its high ceilings, spacious interior, and its gleaming bar, Barbacoa feels grand and classy. Yet it doesn’t have that hoity-toity feel that we all like to avoid. Romance it up on the leather couch seating, have a boys (or girls) night out at the bar, kick back and relax over snacks on the patio, or up the intimacy a notch with a fruit shisha in the lounge and bar upstairs. This place just has all the right vibes. Ask chef Adam if he can make you some ice cream with the liquid nitrogen thingamajig. Pure magic.


‘Must Do’ by Little Miss Bali

Little Miss Bali loves to share her love for Bali. And so she did share her love for Barbacoa too! Find her article right below, or on her personal blog: Little Miss Bali


And so Barbacoa is exactly why so many people have come to LOVE Bali, although evolving from their nostalgic younger days ( which you can still find around Sanur and Legian). Bali can be a total gastronomic adventure, catering to even the fussiest of foodies. Don’t get me wrong I love the street food, however occasionally its really nice to step it up and see how the other half live at a fraction of the price you would spend in Australia ( and other countries for that matter). Barbacoa opened a couple of months back and is proving itself to being an awesome place for great food, ambient atmosphere and sensational drinks. The babi guling is extremely popular and the squid is amazing, I have added it to the ‘Fine Dining’ section of my App, only as its a little fancier than other options ( you should wear a shirt and some shoes) and up there in price for Bali, however still totally reasonable. Definitely put on your must do list.

Honeycombers: Hot New Tables

Honeycombers Bali is quite enthousiastic about the opening of Barbacoa Bali! Read their kind words below, or in the ‘Hot New Tables’ article on their website: Honeycombers Bali


Calling all carnivores! Barbacoa opened with a cracking – or should that be crackling – launch last month and has been steadily pumping out some of the most delicious, mouthwatering cuisine since. It’s Latin American, with a twist,  so if you’re craving wood fire and charcoal cooked meat: a suckling pig or a good Aussie lamb, then head directly here and do not pass go. They also do great seafood and salads so all is not lost for the non-meat eater. Plus, the rice paddy view out the back is divine!