The Warung – Balinese Diving Guide’s Hawker Stall Serves Succulent Chicken & Irresistible Homemade Sambal
November 16, 2023
I recently tried the food at The Warung and it got me genuinely excited. This recently-opened establishment at Lau Pat Sat is the brainchild of Suka and Juliana, a husband-and-wife team.
Suka, a Balinese diving guide, and Juliana, a lawyer with a passion for diving, moved to Singapore and opened a food stall to showcase home-style Balinese cuisine. Despite Suka not being a professionally-trained chef, his upbringing in a kitchen-rich environment, common among Balinese families, is reflected in the delicious offerings at The Warung.
The Warung offers a menu reminiscent of Balinese home dining, featuring ayam betutu in original, goreng (fried), and bakar (grilled) variations. They also serve a whole tilapia fish served either grilled or ‘nyat nyat’ style that is only available for dinner. In the stall, you will see Suka manning the grill and Juliana assisting him.
The ayam betutu set ($8.90) includes a stick of satay lilit, urap, a betutu-style half-boiled egg, and portions of sambal matah and sambal embe. The term “betutu” refers to the slow-cooking method, in which the egg is prepared with a rempah comprising 17 spices and herbs. The rempah, made from scratch, comprises lemongrass, various gingers, garlic, turmeric, shallots, and lime leaves.
The original version of this chicken was a flavour explosion. The chicken was juicy, and succulent, and you can totally taste that awesome marinade action. However, my heart leaned toward the grilled rendition, where a delicate brush of lemongrass oil elevated the meat to a level of smokiness and fragrance that’s downright irresistible. It’s like the chicken took a dip in flavour paradise. And the Sate Lilit by its side is a true standout. The minced chicken, grilled to perfection, boasts a robust texture that’s complemented by a refreshing lemongrass fragrance.
Each set is served with two types of sambal. One of them is the classic sambal matah found in every Balinese household. The other is sambal embe which features caramelized fried shallots, garlic, chili padi, and lime, all fried in coconut oil. Both sambals pack a fiery punch, prompting us to reach for water, but we kept going.
I am eager to return for the grilled fish!
Address: 18 Raffles Quay, Lau Pa Sat Stall 63, Singapore 048582
Opening Hours: Mon-Fri 11.30am-8pm; Sat 12pm-8pm. Closed Sun.