The Art of Sabrage is a technique of opening a Champagne bottle by using a saber [a golden one, of course] to hit the glass ring at the top of the bottle below the cork and at the weakest point of the bottle seam.
What has this to do with food? Well La Terrace, at the Sekar Nusa Resort, has become a Swording Vault. That means that it has been authorized by the Confrerie du Sabre d?Or to perform the art of sabering bottles of Champagne. If you wish to discover more about this ancient French art, developed by the dashing young cavalry officers of Napoleon?s army, check out the web site of the Grand-Maitre, Jean-Claude Jalloux, at www.LaSabredor.com.
When the Sekar Nusa Resort first opened, I recall the Thai section of the menu at La Terrace being much more significant, but I may be mistaken. Now, whilst that section is quite small, it is still very comprehensive. Furthermore, there seems to be a great Thai influence on the general Asian section of the menu, in fact some or the best ?Thai? dishes are to be found there!
La Terrace is exactly that! It is a large open area, facing the southern seas of Bali. Tables are well spaced, and overall you immediately feel very comfortable.
Yum Neua is a salad with scallops of marinated spicy beef. A starter with a bit of a bite to it! At La Terrace they will even give the same treatment to pork or chicken, if you prefer. Phow Phea Tood are deep fried spring rolls, stuffed with shrimps. Thai spring rolls are made using rice paper, so are always light and crispy. Yum Woon Sen is that wonderful Thai salad of spicy glass noodles and a mixture of seafood. I would prefer it with just prawns, but this is a great dish!
Thailand?s two most famous soups are on this menu, as they are on millions of others throughout the world. Tom Yum Gung Yai, that hot and sour broth floating with prawns, and Tom Khar Gai, chicken pieces in coconut milk. Both are done to perfection, here.
Gaeng Pet Moo is a thick luscious red curry with pork, Gaeng Khen Wan Neua is a beef curry, but this time green chilli paste is the base, so slightly hotter. The fragrant Panang Gai, from Thailand?s Muslim south, is a yellow chicken peanut curry. This is a dish that is seemingly liked by everyone!
Hor Mook Talay is a coconut milk curry of mixed seafood. Here at La Terrace it is served for you in the shell. Neua Yang Jim Jaw is grilled beef, with a hot dip on the side. Moo Phud Prick Sod is stir-fried pork, with chilli of course. Gung Tod Kateam Prick Thai are chunky prawns that have been stir fried with garlic and peppercorns.
Thai desserts are invariably very sweet, and here at La Terrace they are no exception to that rule. Boy Loy is a sticky rice dumpling in coconut milk, whilst the Guey Bood Chee is a sweet banana, also in coconut milk.
The small International menu includes a Tuna Salad, with sliced onions, cherry tomatoes and kalamata olives tossed in balsamic. An unusual Chicken Coco, deep-fried moulded mince of chicken meat, wrapped in roasted coconut and served with tartar sauce!
The Prawn Salad is very Thai, and for me one of the best offerings at La Terrace! Firm juicy prawns with lemongrass, chilli, kaffir lime and coriander leaves, all tossed in palm sugar syrup to soften the power of the chilli.
Ah, the refreshing tastes of Thailand! So simple!
The Asian menu has offerings from many countries, but mainly Indonesia. Pelalah Ikan is a delicate steamed fish with Balinese spices. Ayam Bakar Taliwang is a BBQ leg of chicken, with chilli and coconut milk, soft flesh and much flavour. The Udang Bakar Sambal Sereh is a great dish of grilled jumbo prawns with lemongrass sambal and chilli. Tuna Sambal Mentah is fillets of grilled tuna with shallots, kaffir lime leaves and chilli.
Kari Rebung is an unusual vegetarian dish, bamboo shoots in a curry with pickled vegetables and steamed rice. Gulay Kambing is a very rich lamb curry, casseroled with coriander and cumin.
The Megibung is a Balinese Banquet. A large variety of dishes, and a bottle of Bali?s Hatten Rose wine, all for Rp. 308,000 for two persons. Great value for an introduction to the delights of Bali!
To finish, Poached Salak, that unusual fruit that grows up on the upper slopes of Mt. Agung, is served with black sticky rice.
The wine list is small but well chosen, consisting mainly of Australian and French wines, and offered at reasonable prices. French champagne is available, of course!
There is nothing bland about the food at La Terrace. It seems quite fitting to enjoy it in almost an al fresco style, on the terrace with that peaceful seaview.
Just watch that sabre!