Recently returned from a wonderful holiday in Bali, we are trying to keep the spirit going with some Balinese food but not having much luck.
Bali Grill at Rosalie didn't really hit any buttons so when a gym buddy suggested Makanan to K2 we got excited.
Last night, accompanied by V Diddy, another Bali veteran, we schlepped over to West End.
Makanan is in a restaurant strip that makes Hardgrave Road a great dining destination. There's so much to choose from from pizza to Vietnamese or modern Australian. There's also a great bottle shop - Chalk and Cheese - more on that later.
You won't find much Balinese atmosphere at Makanan, but with it's sparse decor and plastic table cloths it does look like many small eateries in Asian countries. The staff are friendly and helpful and look the part and we noticed a few Indonesian type faces amongst the crowd which is always a good sign.
We ordered Steamed chicken dim sims ($6.50) which arrived very promptly and were quite large, great to share between the three of us. They did have a strange fish flavour which didn't seem to come from the sauce...
Our sates ($9.50) were smothered in a tasty, sweet peanut sauce and the Kari Ayam (chicken curry) ($13.50) was well flavoured but mild as per the menu. I was a little disappointed with the Nasi Goreng ($10. 50) after the dishes I have eaten in Bali. There it was much more spectacular with prawn chips and often a fried egg on top. This one was just an ordinary fried rice.
V Diddy unleashed her inner child and ordered the fried coconut ice cream for dessert. She couldn't finish the large serving so I had to help -shame - not! It had a nice crispy crust and a light caramel sauce.
Afterwards we wandered back in to Chalk and Cheese and bought a great little goats cheese wrapped in pancetta. I'm going to grill that on Saturday night to take our mind off the election. As well as a great wine selection, Chalk and Cheese also had a nicely stocked deli section with a few choice cheeses and other goodies. Great to go on a cheese platter with some wine. Very convenient really.
Bottom line: Not a blast of Balinese food but cheap Indonesian and very quick.
4/59 Hardgrave Rd, West End