My great stay at the Hotel Vila Lumbung, in the Seminyak Petitenget area, Bali, was complemented by a similarly great lunch at their signature restaurant, the Lumbung Restaurant.
And as I contemplated their all-new menu that is being created at the establishment, I chatted to 40-year-old Executive Chef Raka Susila, an affable original Balinese from Kuta with an amazing curriculum.
Raka started his career as a chef from the base: a Diploma as a Chef in a Denpasar institution, which was followed by an amazing career: Trainee at Matahari Bungalow Legian 3,5 years, Chef at the Nusa Dua Bali Midori and at the Mercure Kuta 5 years, after which Chef Raka got the urge to learn new experiences and with them, new cuisines. A 3 years spell at Miami Carnival Cruise Line took him first to the butcher section, where he admits he learned a lot, and later as a chef at the Lido, the lunch restaurant on the cruise ship pool deck.
Back to Bali, he became Member of ICA, the Indonesian Chef Association, and started his new adventure in his homeland at Char Grill and Bar Lounge, where he worked for 1,5 years before joining The 101 Legian for 4 years and finally landing at sister establishment Vila Lumbung, where he has now worked for 2 years.
Wow, I must say that this curriculum gave me the cravings, and so I asked to serve me the food, while members of marketing office and management of the group joined me at the table. I really did enjoy their company, since they were pretty informal and they really put me at ease from the beginning with their smiley faces and friendliness.
I was presented with the option of a menu selection of Italian dishes, some classic ones, an others creative dishes from Chef Raka, tested for an amazing two long months before being officially offered to diners.
I started off with a starter of tasty chicken sandwich and an amazing sauce, and served with salad and fries. I continued with Linguine alla Pescatora, and here I must say Chef Raka got my full approval as the seafood flavours came out deliciously in my mouth. I am still mouthwatering. I must say the choice was hard since the list of pastas in the menu included some all-time favourites like Bolognese, which I assume must all be winners!
The salad of potatoes wedges, olives and pepperoni was presented in great details, and prepared my mouth for… pizza! And not an ordinary pizza, but the signature all-original Pizza Rendang, topped with the famous Indonesian spicy beef curry. The pizza was tasty and thin crust, as I would expect it in an Italian restaurant. Again, the list of pizzas on the menu is extensive, and I wish I had the time to try them all!
Cocktails I tasted included a Kiwi Apple Soda mocktail, with fresh kiwi, green apple syrup topped with soda water, a quite alcoholic Lady Morgan, composed of Captain Morgan Rum, dragon fruit, basil leaves topped with lemonade, my favourite, and a Virgin Pinacolada mocktail, with fresh pineapple, coconut cream and pineapple juice. All delicious and so tasty.
The ice cream combination was just the cherry on the cake, literally, and the quality latte was what I needed to end an amazing lunch.
I got up from the table with my belly filled up and pretty entertained by the quality of the food and the quantity of smiles received by this special team that I will keep a great memory of. Well done all at Vila Lumbung, and special thanks to professional Chef Raka for his skills and his creative menu.
Lumbung Restaurant also offer Asian and Western cuisine, so worry not, you can make everyone happy if you come as a group. The atmosphere is romantic: located near the free-form swimming pool, it enjoys amazing exotic tropical garden views. And as I said earlier, the culinary experience was top class! Thanks Chef Raka!
Located at Hotel Vila Lumbung, Jalan Raya Petitenget 1000x, Seminyak, Bali.
Opened 7 days a week, 11am to 11pm.
Check them out at Instagram on @HotelVilaLumbung