PUBLISHED June 30th, 2015 02:27 pm | UPDATED March 26th, 2019 01:16 pm
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Us Nomads were most pleased to hear that Singapore-based restauranteur Beppe de Vito was expanding his Il Lido brand to the isle of Bali. Having established one of the most well-known Italian dining destinations in Singapore (as well as a host of other venues), we were looking forward to seeing how his Bali venture would play out.
Il Lido Bali is not exactly easy to find. With a semi-hidden location along Jalan Raya Kerobokan, your best bet is to look out for the bright orange sign overhead. Walking the long, narrow entrance, you’ll find yourself faced with something of a secret garden. Entirely al fresco, Il Lido takes advantage of the ample space to provide a gorgeous dining setting that is uniquely Balinese, complete with views over rice paddies. Beautiful.
Settling in for an indulgent lunch, we ordered a couple of glasses of Prosecco, ready for our starters.
Arriving first was the Scallops with Asparagus in Lobster Sauce (Rp. 250k) – semi-soft and perfectly cooked, the lobster bisque sauce was savoury, however the entire dish as a whole remained subtle and mild. A decent beginning to the meal, but not mind-blowing.
Il Lido’s Scallops with Asparagus in Lobster Sauce
Then, things got interesting with the Mozzarella with Grilled Peppers and Pesto (Rp. 120k). Aside from it being a gigantic portion, the mozzarella was soft, fresh, and utterly superb. And the bed of grilled sweet peppers it was resting on was delicious, I couldn’t have asked for a better flavour combination. Eat your heart out, caprese salads. The rocket also gave a pleasant bitterness and crunch. A great dish for vegetarians.
Il Lido’s Mozzarella with grilled Peppers and Pesto
Moving on to the pastas, we ordered the Tagliolini with Baccalà and Pesto (Rp. 145k) and the Ossobuco Agnolotti with Gremolata (Rp. 160k). The tagliolini was definitely catered to the al dente Italian crowd so it may not be suitable for all tastes if you’re used to a soft bite. The fresh pesto was savoury and paired nicely with the pasta, but it was completely outshone by the Ossobuco Agnolotti (Piedmont Ravioli). One of the most moreish pastas I’ve had, the ravioli pieces absolutely melted in my mouth. Served in a rich, blood-red rag sauce, the Osso Bucco was so fork tender and flavourful. Combined with the sprinkling of fresh cheese and Italian chopped herbs, this dish barely lasted 5 minutes on the table before being wiped clean.
Il Lido’s Ossobuco Agnolotti with Gremolata
As for the mains, the Black Cod with Prawn Cacciucco (Rp. 220k) was more than acceptable. Plump prawns with delicious herbed celeriac mousse combined with the well grilled fish and a tasty lobster-esque broth.
Il Lido’s Black Cod with Prawn Cacciucco
Judging by the size of the Lamb Rack with Grilled Eggplant and Olive Jus (Rp. 290k), it was a very young lamb, hence the meat was delightfully tender. Paired with creamy soft mashed potatoes, this was a great main and the colour is visually stunning as well.
Il Lido’s Lamb rack with grilled Eggplant and Olive Jus
If you still have room for dessert, you can expect a cool mix of Indonesia inspired dishes. The tirimisu, whist being another huge portion, was disappointingly average. The Pineapple Crème Brûlée, however, was a pleasant surprise. Comprising of fresh sweet fruit chunks and light cream, the traditional dessert was then lightly torched. Not too shabby, not too shabby at all.
Il Lido’s Crème Brûlée
Even at lunch, Il Lido draws in a decent sized crowd, especially for such a new restaurant. With the culinary scene in Bali growing day by day, I have no doubt that Il Lido will come to be one of the chief representatives of Italian cuisine in Bali, and quite deservedly so.