In ‘Eat Pray Love’, Bali is where Elizabeth Gilbert found romance, but this island is instead a food haven for me. I was surprised to find a Balinese restaurant back in Singapore, at Clarke Quay where daytime was a much quieter contrast from its night culture.
Indonesian Sumatra offers more spicy food, such as curried meat and vegetables as they are under Middle East and Indian influences; while Javanese cuisine usually comes with a sweet taste. What I enjoy is Balinese cuisine, which has a good mixture of both, with hot and powerful spices often used.
Bayang, which means ‘shadow’ to symbolise the Wayang kilit puppets in Indonesia, offers many traditional Balinese fare at a purplish-toned elegant setting. Some of the signature offerings on the menu include Bebek Betutu (Baked Duck with Balinese spice in Banana Leaf), Satay Campur (marinated minced fish or meat grilled on lemongrass sticks), and Ikan Bakar Bali (Barbeque whole fish basted in special sweet sauce grilled slowly over charcoal).
If you come in a group of three, the Appetizer Platter ($19) should work best for you. It comes with a combination of street food such as sate madura (skewered chicken), spring rolls, grilled prawns, and my favourite begedel potato cakes.
A must-have is the Gado Gado ($14), what I would cheekily name as the ‘Indonesian salad’. The rice cakes and beancurd was a perfect combi with the thick peanut sauce. What sealed the deal was the topping of kangkong fried tempura style, a creative addition which added addictive light crisp.
I also had the Hasil Laut Seafood in Yellow Curry ($22). The delicious gravy was quickly scooped with the fragrant Yellow Coconut Rice ($3.50). Though the taste was more strangely more Thai than Balinese, I had no complains.
Bayang now offers affordable weekday $15 set lunches which include an appetizer, soup, main course and drink – This is one very tempting offer.
Bayang, 3A River Valley Road, #01-05 Clarke Quay, Tel: +65 6337 0144
Opening Hours: Sun–Thu: 12pm–2.30pm, 6pm–12am; Fri–Sat: 12pm–2.30pm, 6pm–1am