Cosmic Diners are different! How often can you say that about a new restaurant that opens in Bali? So many just re-hash what everyone else is doing, and sometimes not even getting that right!
Cosmic are American diners as seen through the eyes of an alert young Balinese who spent some considerable time in America during his training for future life in the family business. He returned to Bali full of ideas; and what is more important, the ideas are working!
The attention to design detail at Cosmic Sanur is amazing, the concept of a small intimate train carriage was brilliant and is sure to become a teen hangout. Everything about the place is 1960's America, even the background music.
However no matter how fancy the icing is on the cake is it is the taste that counts most, and here Cosmic is a winner! The dishes may be simple, but their construction and attention to detail are excellent.
When you first order at Cosmic you are presented with a small carton of popcorn [it is an American diner], and what I thought was very strange; a shot glass of water! I soon discovered that in fact the small glass contained coconut water; cool, fresh and sweet. A pre-warning that everything here is just that little bit different, so good for a change!
Breakfast, any time of the day! Why can?t everyone do that? Why do they all have to copy old fashioned hotels and cut off at 11.00, or even 10.00 a.m? Breakfast was my first try at Cosmic. I do enjoy a 'tourist breakfast' when traveling so why not try it occasionally at home? The Morning After was the title and whilst it was hardly that for me the breakfast of bacon, eggs, mushrooms, chicken sausage and two slabs of sourdough toast was perfect!
American Diners are often located on connecting roadways between residential areas and office/factory ones, so an all day breakfast is very popular with shift workers.
Other breakfast options include the classic Eggs Benedict, with a bit of a twist, poached eggs, smoked ham, sautéed spinach, toasted sourdough, Hollandaise sauce, a Mexican breakfast of scrambled eggs, chorizo, refried red kidney beans, pico de gallo, guacamole, sour cream, tortilla chips or a trendy one from the cafes of New York City; Ricotta Hotcakes, with mixed berries compote, fresh banana, whipped maple butter & honey.
Also more trendy café than diner fare is a choice of salads; Pan-fried Chicken & Avocado or Black & White Sesame Crusted Tuna. The same could be said of pasta dishes. Fusilli with spicy chorizo, fettuccine with meat balls, penne with chicken and mushroom or an old American favourite; Truffle Mac & Cheese, sprinkled with bacon crumble.
Diner food is traditionally fast and satisfying. What could fill the bill better than a juicy hamburger. Cosmic seem to have perfected the budget hamburger, even though they only use wagyu beef [a blend of chuck, brisket and short rib]. The Cosmic hamburgers, the patties all 150 gram, can be original, with cheese or a number of other fancy ways. Surprisingly good!
Cosmic would not qualify as an American Diner if there were no pancakes! As they are made fresh to order, a slight wait is necessary, never a problem when quality is at stake. Most are served as a dessert with a variety of fruits, creams and ice creams. However there s also a main meal version with buttermilk fried chicken, maple syrup of course!
More serious meals are also available, but like all else here are budget priced, and of consistent quality. A Chicken Parmigiana is one of those standby dishes, always good. Simple and satisfying,
Being an American diner there must be a Hot Dog! They use a beef frankfurter, yellow mustard, ketchup with sweet onion & bacon jam with fries, However the beer-battered Fish & Chips is about as English as you can get, it comes with tartar and citrus salt, tastes good! A Pulled Pork Sandwich uses meat slowly cooked for 18 hours, cole slaw and BBQ sauce.
Steak is essential and so are Baby Back Ribs. The Steak [rib-eye] is diner style with black pepper or mushroom, a touch of Europe with Bearnaise or café-style fancy in a shiraz reduction and trufled potatoes.
Only open a couple of months and Cosmic Sanur have already added a small range of Asian influenced dishes that are popular in the cafes of the USA, rice bowls. Black Pepper Beef is shredded meat stir-fried in black pepper sauce topped with shavings of crisp onion. Pork Belly, double cooked in soy is another, sharing the bowl with a fried egg and sautéed corn kernels. Both are excellent but the Chicken version was perfect! The chicken, as fish, so often overcooked in Bali, was tender and moist. The use of chicken thighs instead of the more common breast provided more taste, a light infusion with teriyaki sauce just right, with broccoli and carrots sprinkled with garlic chips. A good simple dish!
What a great addition to the Sanur dining scene, where same-same is usually the norm!