If you are vegetarian or vegan, or if you enjoy meatless meals from time to time, Bali will not disappoint you. It’s very easy to be a vegetarian or vegan in Bali, as most restaurants here have generous veggie selections on offer. The Indonesian menu certainly has plenty of often exotic veggies that you won’t find if you don’t live near the equator, and tempe and tofu are used a lot.
But to treat yourself to a magnificent meal that just happens to involve ‘nothing with a face or mother’ do NOT miss the restaurant Zula. I’m a (non-militant!) vegetarian and I visit Zula probably five times a week. It’s in Seminyak on Jalan Dyanapura (or Jalan Abimayu, or Jalan Caplak Tanduk – just tell the taxi ‘Jalan Dyanapura’) about 20 meters from Jl. Legian. (Hit the little globe, just before the link, for a Google Map) For strict vegan in Bali it’s at the top of my list.
My photo won’t do the food justice, but this is the Mediterranean platter, with hummous, tahini, baba ganoush, matabucha, falafel and other veggie goodies. Scoop it all up with a pita if you like. Also pictured is the corn & coconut milk soup– absolutely stunning, with the coconut milk giving the corn a wonderful rich taste. The juice is carrot/apple/ginger-the ‘liver cleanser’ (can’t imagine why one would need to give the liver a good cleaning in Bali, can you?…). Great juices and smoothies at Zula.
Look on the blackboard for the day’s macrobiotic Planet Platter, small portions of healthy goodness, different almost every day.
The soups are all tasty– I love the gaspatcho, made from fresh tomato, basil, olive oil, etc. pureed right there when you order it. Hows that for fresh?! I sometimes ask to have heated up. Miso, split pea, & pumpkin ginger are other choices.
You probably won’t ‘need’ desert after your meal, but I’d suggest ordering it anyway! Zula has wonderful desserts like the cashew soy custard with carob topping or the apple crisp, but my favorite might be the coconut-apple kanten: it’s a light agar-agar based treat blended with coconut and apple with a not-too sweet strawberry sauce on top.
Zula also has a breakfast selection that is the perfect healthy alternative: try the oat porridge with fresh papaya and banana, pumpkin seeds and raisins. There is the tofu omelette with sauteed spinach, and if you feel like buckwheat pancakes you will find some of the tastiest in Bali here.
There’s seating outside or in the quieter non-smoking air-con section inside if you prefer.
Friendly staff, friendly guests
Over the years, Zula seems to me to have gotten more popular, which is no surprise considering the quality of the food and service, but it has enhanced the experience. I always seem to fall into a conversation with an expat engaged in an interesting business or someone who has just gotten off an airplane from somewhere exotic like India or New York City!
I could go on and on, but for now you’ve got enough to go on: on your next visit to Bali, get up to Seminyak and enjoy Zula!