A favoured destination for chefs around the island when they have a day off, Cuca is a food-lover’s fantasy. The unadorned dining room is intentional – there is nothing to distract from the sensory pleasure of the food. As enigmatic chef/owner Kevin Cherkas describes it: “The aim is to spark memories of tastes and flavours. This is clever comfort food… like Grandma went to cooking school.” Think fried chicken battered in black sesame seeds and oats, glazed carrot salad with grilled mountain strawberries and crunchy cashew nuts, and caramel apple, slow-baked with Javanese black-pepper ice-cream and waffle crumbs.

Everything used in the kitchen is sourced locally – the coconut oil, Amed sea salt, Jimbaran seafood, free-range chicken, Javanese chocolate and Balinese wild-flower honey. The liveliest seats in the house are at the food bar, where you can chat with the chefs and watch them prepare your meal. When it comes to liquid refreshments, try the Moon-gria – a white wine sangria stacked with iced fruit cubes that reveal layer upon layer of flavour as they melt.  

Location

Gateway to the rugged Bukit Peninsula, Jimbaran Bay is famed for its nightly fish barbecues on the beach and luxury resorts. The beach is safe for swimming here and it’s a popular spot with families.

Cuca | Jalan Yoga Perkanthi, Jimbaran | +62 361 708 066

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