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Bali Day 7 Part 1: Boneka Brunch at the St. Regis

This is part of our 2014 Bali Trip Report. Only a few more posts to go before our trip report is over…sad face.

Today was our last full day on Bali. I couldn’t believe we had been here for a week already. Despite the intense heat every day, Bali had really grown on me and I didn’t want to leave. The people were some of the friendliest I have encountered throughout my travels. So much Aloha!! The food was also delicious and cheap, and reminded me of my home country, Singapore. I could eat like this every day.

Breakfast today was our regular staple…mie goreng! The Layar did it quite well. We were going to miss this!

We love mie goreng!

The fruit juices are also really great. I usually got a watermelon and Steve the papaya.

It was a good thing we continued to have breakfast really early in the morning (around 7am as we never really got over jet lag), because we were going to have a gastronomical lunch at Boneka, part of the St. Regis Nusa Dua, later that afternoon.

Boneka is a popular buffet restaurant but what they are known for is their upscale Sunday brunch where for the mere price of 55 USD, you can dine on exquisitely prepared food like foie gras, caviar, and lobster omelets, all you can eat! We were definitely looking forward to this. I had made reservations via their online form and they confirmed the details in email.

Prior to brunch, you are invited for a complimentary aperitif hour at the King Cole Bar in the lobby of the St. Regis. I heard they make killer Bloody Mary’s so we made sure we got there in time to take advantage of it. We planned to get to the St. Regis at 11am for our 12pm brunch.

After a leisurely morning of swimming and laying out, we got ready and flagged a taxi down outside The Layar. We asked the driver if they would take us to Nusa Dua which is about 45 minutes away and he said ok. We expected the ride to be around 15 dollars, but it ended up being around 12 USD. The ride there was a lot better than previous taxi rides because there was less traffic and we got to take the nice new highway which I’ve heard reduces the traffic to and from the airport considerably. We had to pay an extra 2 dollars for that though, so I guess the fare was close to what we originally expected but we got there in 35 minutes so that was a plus! Since we arrived early we walked around the St. Regis and got to take a few pictures.

Entering the stunning St. Regis lobby.

Such beautiful decor

At 11am, the doors to the King Cole Bar, which is right off the lobby, opened.

The King Cole Bar

We were greeted by a hostess who confirmed our reservation at Boneka, and escorted us into the bar. We opted to sit around the bar as opposed to a table so we could chat with the bartender.

King Cole Bar

There was a limited menu of free aperatifs, but to be quite honest, I think if you asked for something, they could make it for you and wouldn’t charge for it (make sure to tip though!). I ordered a Bloody Mary, and Steve got a Passionfruit Daquiri.

The drinks menu and our delicious drinks, prepared to order.

The drinks were really good. I like Bloody Marys and love it when they are done well. I loved this version, so I had two of them. I was surprised that the aperitif hour included more than one drink. I don’t know why but I guess I thought it was only the first drink that was included and that was it. Our super friendly bartender told us about a Balinese buy cheap acyclovir Bloody Mary – essentially a “Bali Mary,” which Steve got as his second drink. It looked just like my bloody mary but the ingredients had a hint of sweetness and some special spices. I definitely detected jicama in it too. I preferred the regular Bloody Mary though. We also ordered a strawberry punch to try. All the drinks were really good! We kept it at two and a half drinks each because any more and we’d tip over and we still had to eat brunch!

Enjoying our drinks at the King Cole Bar

Close to noon, we were escorted from the King Cole bar across the lobby to Boneka. The restaurant was large and spacious and decorated in spritely tones of red. We had a lovely table indoors near the outdoor area. I ordered a pot of tea and Steve got a coffee, and then all bets were off, we dug right into the buffet…

The buffet was quite extensive the the presentation exquisite. I just love buffets in Asia. In addition to buffet items, there were specialized stations which had hot specialties like dim sum, fried bananas (made to order), omelettes, crepes, caviar eggs, lobster eggs, foie gras mousse, congee, even a Balinese nasi campur station!

In addition to buffet, you can order from a menu of items and they will be brought to you. In fact you technically didn’t even need to get up from your seat, if you wanted seconds of anything they were always willing to get it for you.

Caviar on blini, Lobster egg topped with salmon roe

Congee (rice porridge) with savory toppings, Traditional dim sum

Foie gras mousse on a choux pastry, Lobster omelette

Seared foie gras and egg

Grilled meats from the satay station on the outdoor patio

A beautiful plate of nasi campur. 

The sweet offerings were also amazing. The croissants were very good and there was even a yummy croissant french toast/bread pudding thing that my friend Wendy recommended. She spent nine days at the St. Regis …what a life!!

Flaky croissants. Hats off to the pastry chef.

Croissant french toast which tasted like bread pudding because of the thick custard inside. Fried bananas with condensed milk

Dessert buffet with chocolate fountain. The fountain was probably the least impressive of the lot because of the sparse selection of things to dip the chocolate with!

It was such a treat to dine at Boneka and I thought the 55 dollar price tag was more than worth it for unlimited caviar and foie gras alone! I did indeed eat everything I pictured here, or at least tried it (and even got seconds of some). There were many local dishes as well, some I had never even heard of, so I thought there was some nice representation of Balinese and Indonesian foods. Needless to say, we were very very full, but we spent a LONG time at brunch, taking our time to enjoy the dishes and the vibrant atmosphere of the restaurant. We never felt rushed even though it was fairly crowded for brunch, and service was excellent all around.

One of the colorful booths in Boneka at the St. Regis.

We love love love brunch at Boneka and highly recommend it for a decadent Sunday brunch in Bali. Make sure you book via their online reservation form. They will email you your confirmation after that.

There are many other luxury resorts which offer brunches like this in Bali and we’ve only tried Boneka so far (we heard it is one of the best) but we will definitely return one day! Stay tuned for more scenes from the St. Regis and our last dinner in Bali…

Read more about our Bali 2014 Trip of a Lifetime.

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