A review by Wouter Stap, intern and fourth-year Nutrition and Dietetics student.
If you have been to Bali before, you know it’s the place to be for vegans. You already know the hippie restaurants in Ubud and Seminyak. However, there are some local vegan spots that you probably haven’t heard of.
When I was in Bali, I enjoyed the food at the famous vegan restaurants. Yet I noticed the seperation between tourists and locals. The large restaurants are mostly owned by bule (foreigners) and you rarely see any local people eating there. Though the prices may be okay for you, for most Indonesian people they are still too expensive. Yet there are some small vegan spots which are owned by locals. They are not that easy to find, but I will help you!
1. Tasty Vegan – a beautiful garden in the middle of Seminyak
This was my favourite vegan restaurant by far! They have a very nice garden which is an oasis of rest in the crowded Seminyak. You have to enter a very narrow street where you won’t expect a restaurant, but it’s really worth it. Tasty Vegan is owned by very friendly Balinese people. They offer both Indonesian and Western food, but the Indonesian options are better.
2. Narayana Vegetarian – real Balinese vegan food in Seminyak
A very tiny place. You have to look for a sign which says “vegetarian” along the road, though I think it’s actually vegan. Their food is very authentic Balinese, only for lovers! You can also buy soy protein there. I used that to make my own vegan sate, vegan rendang and other dishes. The place is a temple for Krishna and sells incense as well.
3. Warung Vegan Padang Seminyak – for spicy lovers
A warung is a small local restaurant in Indonesian. This one is located in the same street as Narayana. They veganized the traditional food from Padang in Sumatra. It’s quite spicy and has jengkol, a seed with a very strong taste.
4. Fortunate Coffee Denpasar – great place for cakes at the Buddhist temple
In 2019 I attended a vegan festival which was organized at this restaurant. It is located behind the Buddhist temple and kind of belongs to it. You can see the huge temple from the road. Go all the way around it at the right side. There you will find the restaurant. I didn’t find the menu very special, but they offer really good vegan cakes. I ordered my birthday cake here which you see on the photo.
5. Loving Hut Denpasar – good option to order food at
This restaurant is located in Denpasar, farther away from the touristy places. Maybe it doesn’t belong on this list, since it’s not owned by Indonesians. Loving Hut is a chain of vegan restaurants owned by Supreme Master Ching Hai, a kind of vegan spiritual leader who resides in Taiwan. You will see her on television in other vegan restaurants as well. However, their menu is mainly Indonesian and Western. I used to order their food on Grab or GoFood.
Pictures were taken from the restaurants’ social media accounts or made by Wouter.