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Written by Cisca Lim
Edited by Jiayi Ng

Everyone knows there’s good pork to be had in Bali – sow what?

Given that majority of Bali’s population hails from the Hindu community, the restriction to pork is not as strict as in other parts of Indonesia. And when you add local Balinese flavour to the succulent meat that so many love, you just can’t help but create a work of culinary art.

Case in point, Babi Guling – the most popular and mouth-watering suckling pork specialty in Bali. With numerous variations found in stalls all over the island, each Babi Guling has its own unique and authentic taste, some more popular than the others.

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But we’re not interested in going where everyone’s going – true gluttons head where the best food can be found.

And you’re coming with us today! From the essential Babi Guling to adventurous hybrid dishes with Western and Asian influences, here are Bali’s best pork dishes that you’ll definitely want to pig out on:

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1. The next “pig” superstar on the island – Babi Bagus, Denpasar

You can’t hide good things for long, and such is the case with Babi Bagus, which is now on its second outlet in Tuban.

Located in Umalas Denpasar, the first Babi Bagus is just a simple store by the narrow roadside with an equally humble setting.

Photo Via Titien_Franciscus

The open-door stall houses long tables parked up to the wall and several chairs. Next to it is a small glass display where the ingredients are, along with a gorgeous looking whole pancetta-like pork creation called porchetta!

Photo Via Jackmagnifico

Don’t judge it by its simple appearance, though. With portions ranging from normal to a larger special, Babi Bagus is nothing short of a masterpiece.

Served separately from rice on a rattan plate is a juicy chopped tenderloin topped with a Balinese spice sauce, deep-fried pork intestines and lawar (traditional Balinese mixed vegetables with coconut, satay and pork crackling). You’ll even get a tasty bowl of soup to balance out the dryness!

Photo Via Inijie,Bettyshanghai

Set up by three young Balinese who experimented with Pancetta back during their Melbourne-college days, Babi Bagus aims to be original and yet stay faithful to the local flavour. Judging by what we’ve seen so far, they’ve definitely delivered on that promise.

Babi Bagus

Price: Around Rp 30,000 – 45,000 per person (approximately USD $2.20 – 3.50)
Address:  Jl. Bumbak no. 113A Umalas, Denpasar, Indonesia
Phone: +62 812 8532 0307
Opening Hours: From 11am – 6pm (Mon – Sat)
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Website


2. #1 pork satay with notorious street-food credential – Sate Babi Bawah Pohon, Kuta

We know we said we don’t go to places where everyone goes, but we’re always ready to eat our words if it means we get to eat some good pork too.

Sate Babi Bawah Pohon is the most well-known pork satay place in the whole of Bali, and it’s definitely an experience you wouldn’t want to miss.

Located in a modest tent under the shade of trees (“bawah pohon” means “under the tree”), Sate Babi is run by a large group of cooks, who are always busy with the endless orders from a never-ending stream of customers.

Photo Via Arvni,Maharajah8

Still, you won’t have to worry about the queue, for it usually takes less than a minute to serve a plate of this delicious pork satay. The masterpiece includes skewers of pork meat (the quantity depends on your order), a sticky rice cake, a few drops of Balinese bird’s eye chilli, and a pinch of salt.

Photo Via Spiceupyourpalette, Ellentanuwidjaya

Actually, to say that this pork dish is delicious would be an understatement. It is perfectly grilled each time and consistent in its sweet, spicy and rich flavour. The meat itself is fragrant, tender, and extra juicy.

Pair it with a bit of salt and a bite of chili, and you’ll never want to eat anything else ever again. Really – we’re not hamming it up!

Photo Via Sisca.Octafia,Lenny.Oey_

Sate Babi Bawah Pohon

Price: Around Rp 20,000 per portion (approximately USD $1.48).
Address: Jl. Patih Jelantik, Legian, Kuta, Kabupaten Badung, Bali 80361
Coordinates here.
Phone: 0819-9905-3032
Opening Hours: 8am – 6pm (daily)

3. Euphoria for pork lovers – Souphoria Bali, Seminyak.

It’s all about pork with Souphoria! One look at the menu sheet, and you’ll be spoiled for choice with all its pork-centric dishes.

It may be situated by a quiet road amongst rice terrace fields, but that’s not stopping many people from flocking to this place to get a taste of its fine Crispy Pork Belly Sambal Matah. Not only is the food delicious, the restaurant’s quirky decor adds on to an interesting dining experience.

Photo Via Michaelrkosasih,Balicious.Id_

The signature Crispy Pork Belly Sambal Matah is a wholesome plate of white rice with a side of crackers and tender pork belly meat. Mix it all up with the generous local matah sauce, and you’ve got a satisfying meal that is every bit addictive and spicylicious.

Photo Via Ninasariishak,Angkytan

Then there’s their signature Pork Ribs Soup that’s almost similar to your usual oxtail soup, but with the added sweetness that only a long-boiled pork rib can offer. Another favourite is the Pork Belly Spicy Salted Egg and the unique newcomer, Spicy & Sour Pork Ear.

Photo Via Travel.Foodblog
Photo Via The.Lucky_.Belly_

We think they should just rename themselves Euphoria, because that’s what we feel looking at these pictures.

Souphoria Bali

Price: Around Rp 50,000 per person (approximately USD $3.70).
Address: Jl. Bumbak No.116 B, Kerobokan, Bali
Phone: +62 838-9455-3676
Opening Hours: 12.30pm – 9:30pm (Closed on Sat)
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Website

4. Western-style porky food porn – Pork Star, Seminyak

Pork Star is a quirky eatery with a pink container parked before the restaurant serving as their kitchen. Why pink? Well, it’s the colour of a pig!

Photo Via Youkei,Li_Xiao_Ai

Don’t let the pink get you thinking that this is just another fluffy eatery, because these guys are serious about their pork menu. Start off with the famous Pork Dynamite, a bite-size serving of six mozzarella cheese and pork bacon wraps.

Then there’s Pork Star’s Pork Belly, served with steamed rice, a side of French Fries and your choice of sauce. Munch down on the succulent and tender, juicy meat – never has so much satisfaction existed in one bite.

Photo Via Makanterusss,Jackmagnifico

More deliciousness can be found in their menu, such as the Nasi Campur Pork Star and Mixed Platter for sharing with friends (or gobbling down by yourself!).

Photo Via Nataliejesslyn,Xavier_Woolfgang

True to its name, pork is the star of the show here, and we wouldn’t have it any other way.

Pork Star Bali

Price: Around Rp 60,000 per person (approximately USD $4.50)
Address: Jl. Nakula No.88 Ruko C, Seminyak – Bali
Phone: +62 818 817 760
Opening Hours: 10 am – 10 pm (daily)
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Website

5. A small hidden gem for spicy pork – Warung Cahaya, Seminyak

Just an unpretentious and small eating space with a local vibe, Warung Cahaya keeps it simple and nice with light decorations in a bright-themed cafe.

Photo Via Chrislee447

But don’t be fooled by its sweet appearance! When it comes to serving a mean pork dish, their fried pork with sambal matah can do more than just deliver. The meat is deep-fried to a perfect caramel brown with a texture that’s soft and juicy at the same time.

Photo Via Nabaandre

As for the matah sauce, the shallot tastes fresh and the spiciness of the chili is just flawless. Along with the warm rice, every hot bite makes you sweat and wince but the urge to munch on continues.

Photo Via Kookaiii

Due to its rising popularity, an insider tip recommends that you make a quick call before visiting to make sure that they still have the matah sauce left. You’re also advised to come early. There might be a bit of a wait, but it’s going to be well worth it!

Warung Cahaya

Price: Around Rp 35.000 per person (approximately USD $2.60)
Address: Jalan Dewi Ratih No. 1, Legian, Kuta, Legian, Kuta, Kabupaten Badung, Bali 80361
Phone: +62 852-0583-0136
Opening Hours: 8 am – 4pm /or until sold out (daily).
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6. The piggy superhero and its soupy sidekick – Warung Babi Guling & Balung Kuah Bu Dayu, Kuta

Around 6pm until late at night everyday, a small commotion happens along the busy roadside of Kuta. Don’t worry, the only thing they’re fighting for is a taste of Bu Dayu’s Babi Guling.

Photo Via Srikurniati_Fang,Yuichristian

Served by the owner herself, what makes this pork dish noteworthy is the small bowl of Balung Kuah that comes with it. If Batman has Robin, Bu Dayu’s Babi Guling has Balung Kuah. This perfect sidekick to the main dish is a refreshing soup boiled from pork bones and feet, then seasoned with spices for that light hot taste when it hits your palate.

Photo Via Lauw_Foodtography

As for the main star, it’s a plateful of warm white rice topped with tender pork meat, fried pig intestines, a shard of pig skin, satay, lawar and urap – both Balinese mixed vegetables with coconut shreds.

Photo Via Angelnie_,Lauw_Foodtography

Many have raved about how authentic Bu Dayu’s creation is as it has a heavy hint of aromatic spices. The drool-inducing meat also has a well-balanced flavour with just the perfect level of  spiciness.

Photo Via Travelantas

With such culinary perfection lying in wait, what are you waiting for? There’s no need to dress up for Bu Dayu – just come early before it’s all sold out!

Warung Babi Guling & Balung Kuah Bu Dayu

Price: Around Rp 50,000 per person (approximately USD $3.70)
Address: Jalan Raya Kuta No.88, Kuta, Kabupaten Badung, Bali 80361
Getting there: Head to Pasar Kuta and find the old BCA bank. Coordinates here.
Opening Hours: From 7pm – 2am (daily)

7. Sinful, addictive, and porkilicious – Babi Guling Pak Dobiel/ Sari Dewi, Nusa Dua

This warung is nothing fancy, but if you believe in love at first sight, then a plate of Babi Guling Pak Dobiel is going to have you hooked for more.

Photo Via Arnoldpo,Yunitaekadewi

Your true love is served on a glass plate along with heaps of delicious condiments, including pork satay, sinful lard, juicy chopped meat and a side of bean sprouts along with other vegetables. Last but not least, the lightly salted crackling pork skin placed on top is simply icing on the cake.

Photo Via Henjiwong,Sibungbung

Whether you want to mix it all up or not, each spoonful promises you a crunchy, lardy, and salty goodness. If you’re feeling up for some extra savouriness, you can also request for some pork innards.

Photo Via Kurniaintanagung

This Babi Guling also comes with a bowl of soup for an extra surcharge, but how could you leave this romance incomplete? Add away for the complete Pak Dobiel experience!

Warung Babi Guling Pak Dobiel Nusa Dua

Price: Around Rp 40,000 per person (approximately USD $3)
Address: Jalan Srikandi No.9, Nusa Dua, Benoa, Badung- Bali
Phone: +62 361 771633
Opening hours: From 9am – 4pm (daily)

8. Still one of the best-kept local secrets – Babi Guling Sari Kembar, Seminyak, Kuta

Located a little out of the way from main Seminyak, Babi Guling Sari Kembar is probably the most recommended warung by the locals in the area.

They all love it for the obvious reasons: it’s authentic, delicious and affordable. There’s no fancy business here – Babi Guling Sari Kembar is a no nonsense warung serving those who are looking for a quick yet scrumptious Babi Guling fix.

Photo Via Thomasdespin

Watch as the seller’s quick hands mix the plate of rice and decorate it with a fatty sausage, sweet meat, satay, lawar, cassava leaf, and tender old pork. The finishing touch is a few pieces of sweet crackling pig skin and a big cracker.

Photo Via Foodventurer_,Ajakmakan

There are four things to choose from the menu: nasi campur (mixed rice), nasi pisah (rice served separately), nasi spesial (special rice) and nasi campur special (special mixed rice), with varying prices. While they differ in portion and serving method, rest assured, for the heavenly taste is something that remains.

Well, choosing to have your rice served separately would result in a slightly pricier bill, but hey, good things are worth paying for.

Babi Guling Sari Kembar

Price: Around Rp 15,000 – 25,000 per person (approximately USD $1.10 – 2.20)
Address: Jalan Raya Kerobokan No.70, Taman, Kuta Utara, Kerobokan Kelod, Kuta Utara, Kabupaten Badung, Bali 80361, Indonesia
Phone: 0813 3866 5134
Coordinates here.
Opening Hours: 9am – 9pm (daily)

9. The early bird gets the pork – Selingsing Cepaka, Tabanan

Your quest for the best Babi Guling may just end here – that is, if you can wake up for it.

This little warung is actually located in someone’s house, down an alley in Buduk. There are no signs to direct you, but the tempting smell of roasting pork will guide you in the right direction. It’s also only open from 2am to 9am in the morning, so no more lazing in bed!

Photo Via Ninakwilliams

It’ll definitely be worth it, don’t worry. Everything about the Babi Guling here is perfect – the skin is so crispy, the pork so tender, and servings are more than generous.

We recommend that everyone tries this Babi Guling at least once. If it sounds like just the thing to tickle your taste buds, you should absolutely get up early for this splendid ‘secret’ meal – you won’t regret it!

Photo Via Ninakwilliams-Ryan

Selingsing Cepaka

Price: From USD $2
Address: Jalan Desa Cepaka No.33, Kediri, Kabupaten Tabanan, Bali 80351, Indonesia. Coordinates here.
Getting There: Call Made when you are in Bali at 08155725158, or email him via [email protected]
Phone: 03618442051, 081337854662
Opening Hours: 2am – 9am (only daily open in early mornings)

10. Old is gold – Babi Guling Men Suka, Kuta

Located in the corner of the Kuta district right across Hotel Grand Kuta is a small Babi Guling warung with over 30 years of experience.

The joint is far from fancy and slightly under-the-radar, but it’s always packed, particularly during lunch time, with people who can’t get enough of the affordable and authentic dish.

Photo Via Putrasj_Ketut

By looks alone, Babi Guling Men Suka is not much different from your usual Babi Guling – a plate of rice topped with the familiar sides such as roast suckling pig, pork skin, lawar (Balinese mixed vegetables), and a small bowl of soup.

Photo Via Alexanderyoe

But we know better than to judge by appearances, don’t we? By the time the whole mix hits your tastebuds, you’ll love the tender, flavourful and meaty pork, which has just the right amount of saltiness. The crunchy skin is slightly glazed with oil and a thin layer of fat – anything that sounds that sinful just has to be delicious.

We’re not forgetting the soup, which rounds off your meal with a spicy kick.

After so many fancy meals, Babi Guling Men Suka is here to prove that sometimes, simple is best, and a good old Babi Guling is even better.

Babi Guling Men Suka

Price: Around Rp 20,000 per person (approximately USD $1.50)
Address: Jl. Dewi Sri, Legian, Kuta, Kabupaten Badung, Bali
Coordinates here.
Opening Hours: 8am – 5pm (daily)

11. Babi Guling with a local twist – Babi Guling Gianyar Pande Made Oka, Gianyar

If you ever wind up in the culture-rich area of Gianyar, be prepared for an authentic experience for both your soul and palate.

The Babi Guling here is the badass sibling to Kuta and Seminyak’s flavourful and salty suckling pigs – strong and spicy but still fresh and fragrant to the core.

Photo Via Lelypranoto

Better yet, you get to witness for yourself the whole process that leads to the creation of this mouth-watering dish! Even if you aren’t hungry when you arrive, you’ll definitely be by the time you lay hands on your plate.

Photo Via Widzz_46

The portions are extra generous but don’t be surprised if you find yourself munching the whole thing down in no time, including the ever crispy shards of skin and crunchy dry crackers!

Warung Babi Guling Pande Made Oka

Price: Around Rp 30,000 – 40,000 per person (approximately USD $2.20 – 3)
Address: Jl. Jata No.13, Gianyar, Kec. Gianyar, Kabupaten Gianyar, Bali 80511
Coordinates here.
Phone: +62-361- 943351
Opening Hours : 6am – 4pm (daily)

12. The Babi Guling with a dark secret (house sauce) – Babi Guling Handayani

When you reach a spacious parking lot packed with cars, you know it’s a sign of delicious food!

Babi Guling Handayani is a warung with a semi-outdoor concept, with casual wooden furniture filling the dining area. An attractive array of chopped meat and ingredients are displayed openly, and looking at those, it’s not hard to imagine why so many people are flocking here.

Photo Via Otomasas

Lunch here includes a “greenish” soup that is rich with Balinese traditional spices and pork broth, followed with a large plate of Babi Guling complete with the meat, crackling skin, fried innards, lard, fish sate, urutan (pig sausage) and lawar (mixed vegetables).

Photo Via _Dansamson

Last but not least, generous drips of Handayani’s special green sauce, made from a mix of spices, are placed on top. When these come together with the meat and rice, voila! There you have it – an unforgettable and special eating experience you won’t get elsewhere.

Photo Via Madewedastra,Sionwijaya

Warung Babi Guling Handayani

Price: Around Rp 35,000 per person (approximately USD $2.60).
Address: Jl. By Pass Ngurah Rai No.12, Kesiman Kertalangu, Denpasar Tim., Kota Denpasar, Bali 80237
Phone: +62-361- 462792
Opening Hours: 9am – 3 pm (daily)

13. The hottest pork satay around – Sate Plecing Singaraja Warung Dharma

Sate Plecing is a traditional Balinese dish which is marked by a special red sambal sauce. If you love pork and spice, then Sate Plecing Singaraja Warung Dharma is your guy!

Located at Jalan Gunung Agung, Denpasar, you can’t miss the bright yellow headboard that decorates the small satay store. Amidst modest tables and plastic chairs, your pork satay is charcoal-grilled on the spot to an irresistible aroma.

Photo Via Sateplecingdharma

Once finished, these pork skewers will be drenched in the store’s signature red sambal plecing sauce. By this point the smell is probably killing you, but be patient – the dish is made complete with a dash of fried shallot crisps and slices of cucumber to soothe your tongue.

Photo Via Deliciousbali

In addition to pork, they also sell chicken and beef satays, so don’t worry, you do have choices. If you’re really greedy (we mean, really hungry), you can also opt for the set meal, which comes with satay plecing, a plate of rice and a bowl of soto soup!

Or you could just down one hundred satays and call it a day – we wouldn’t mind doing that at all.

Sate Plecing Singaraja Warung Dharma

Price: From Rp 15,000 per person (approximately USD $1.10)
Address: Jl. Gn. Agung No.170, Tegal Kertha, Denpasar Baru, Kota Denpasar, Bali 80118
Phone: +62 819-0504-4260
Opening Hours: 10am – 9pm (Mon), 10:30am – 9pm (Tues – Sun)
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Have we awakened your inner pork-beast (and forced you to memorise the ingredients for Babi Guling) yet? A word to the wise: For the best, most authentic and satisfying pigging out time, just like a true Balinese would, bookmark the page before you hit X!

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