Discerning diners with a penchant for incomparable Japanese flavours should head to Nusa Dua and pay Sakura Japanese Restaurant a visit.
Stepping into one of Nusa Dua’s long-standing resorts, Meliá Bali, is an enlightening moment where the unmistakeable nostalgic sentiment about Bali is evoked instantly. A beachfront complex boasting a magnificent ocean view, the resort is adorned by traditional Balinese elements and entwined with manicured tropical gardens.
As a destination that caters to different travellers from around the world, Melia Bali takes pride in the eclectic dining offerings available at the resort. From the international flavours at the all-day dining El Patio Restaurant, to the coastal menu at Sorrento Mediterranean Restaurant, the hotel has it all.
Deserving its own recognition is the resort’s Sakura Japanese Restaurant that has reopened its doors earlier this year, bringing a new look and elevated culinary delights from the region. The restaurant took the time to revamp and refresh everything they had to offer, but the one thing that stays is the authenticity when it comes to the Japanese inimitable flavours.
The facelifted interior draw inspiration from the Tokyo fish market, offering different kinds of seating to choose from in its cosy and intimate setting. The teppanyaki table is always an entertaining choice, a front-row seat to where the drama is. The sushi bar is great for a date night, but our favourite is the tatami room where diners can have some privacy with an intimate group of friends or family. If you’re looking to bask in the warm and breezy island air surrounded by the lush greeneries, opt for the outdoor seating.
The fish market inspiration continues to the food menu, offering a compact, but curated, selection categorised into appetisers; rice, soup and noodles; sushi & sashimi; salad; main courses; and desserts. Start with spicy edamame with savoury chilli garlic sauce, spicy rock prawn tempura served with spicy mayo, and pan-fried chicken or vegetable gyoza served with ponzu sauce.
The miso soup with silken tofu, shiitake mushroom, wakame seaweed and spring onion is perfect to warm up the palate for more delicacies to come. To have an elaborate taste of how fresh the seafood is, order the sushi & sashimi selection, served in a sumptuous presentation on a theatrical stair-like platform. From the salad section, the salmon one is a favourite.
The main courses offer stellar options, like the robatayaki combination, comprising salmon skewer, prawn and chicken yakitori, grilled asparagus, shiitake mushroom and more, served with teriyaki sauce. The black cod misozuke is perfectly marinated and to-die-for with ginger sprouts and miso sauce. Meat lovers will love the Angus beef tobanyaki, grilled beef tenderloin with stir-fried onion, asparagus, shiitake mushroom, baby carrot and broccoli, served with ponzu sauce.
Pace yourself as you still have to save some space for some sweet treats at the end. The dessert selection at Sakura is simply divine, but if we have to choose, the stars are the yuzu mousse with chocolate cake, ganache, meringue and yuzu shaved ice; and matcha and strawberry tart on shortbread dough.
Asia Dreams Volume 47