“Instead of roasted, the pig’s skin was served deep fried, hence it lacked the juiciness that would be produced if it was roasted, despite it being crunchy to a T.“
The huge demand for Babi Guling Bali (Balinese suckling pig) has propelled it to become one of the most sought-after attractions in Bali – third only to the island’s beautiful beaches and vibrant nightlife. One joint that surely serves one of the best suckling pigs in Bali is Warung Babi Guling Bu Oka, which was founded in 1970 by its namesake Ibu Oka. With three outlets scattered all over Ubud, Ibu Oka is still in charge of its flagship joint on Jalan Raya Mas – which I paid a visit to recently – while the rest are operated by her sons.
At first glance, the shop could pass for someone’s house from the outside. Thankfully, a signboard in front of the joint will let you know that you’re at the right place. With a decently decorated interior, Warung Babi Guling Bu Oka has plenty of room for up to 60 people at one time. It was nearly deserted when I got there at around 2.30pm, with only a couple of customers sitting three tables away from where I was sat.
In less than five minutes after I placed my order to the waiter, a plate of rice – along with a bunch of side dishes surrounding it – was ready on my table. To be honest, this was the first time that I ever tried Babi Guling Bali, so I was slightly taken aback by the Nasi Campur-like arrangement. It consisted of a few slices of the suckling pig, Uras (minced pig’s liver), pig’s innards, pig’s skin, and unripe papaya. Instead of roasted, the pig’s skin was served deep fried, hence it lacked the juiciness that would be produced if it was roasted, despite it being crunchy to a T. The suckling pig’s meat, meanwhile, was perfectly succulent with a hint of spiciness.
It was only later on that that I was informed by my tour guide that a portion of Babi Guling Bali would usually include Lawar (spiced vegetable salad with coconut and minced meat) and a bowl of Ares (banana shoots in pork broth). Looks like I picked the wrong day to come then.
Jl. Raya Mas,
T: 0828 9700 5063
Open daily from 11am to 7pm
Rp.65,000/US$4.70 per person