A Class Act
The name Teatro Gastroteque hints at the plot behind this gastronomically playful, boutique restaurant in downtown Seminyak.
Teatro Gastroteque’s cuisine is self-declared “sophisticated French modern cooking with Asian flavours and twists,” but rather than usual east-meets-west hybrids, expect bold presentations, theatrical-style flair and deceptive illusions. Add combinations of flavours, textures and techniques that have gastronomes returning for more.
Surprises start with Teatro’s Executive Chef and co-creator, Daniel Edward; not remotely French, but a Jakarta native and winner of several world-class chef competitions.
Dinner-only Teatro presents degustation three, five and seven-course menus, a 10-course Chef Degustation menu and signature, 12-course Discovery Menu, with several core dishes repeated across the board, additionally enhanced with carefully selected Old World wines.
“Teatro presents strong balanced menus; each dish bears individual characteristics and detail,” reveals Edward. “Ingredients speak for themselves; we source the best produce available, premium ingredients such as beef are imports, but we mainly use finest, locally sourced ingredients delivering more authentic flavours.”
Visual presentation is equally important to taste, with courses presented as exquisite art forms, impeccably served one-by-one, by slick “butlers”.
It’s high-end dining, but Teatro keeps it casual, devoid of pretention, in an unintimidating dining space designed with an open show kitchen.
Curtains up: our five-course set menu starts with bite-sized aperitifs, playful teasers of the kitchen team’s culinary theatrics, with exquisitely beautiful presentations of typical Indonesian snacks, including a version of rempeyek, a peanut-laced lightly spiced crisp, found in its normal form in markets across the country.
Artisan Foie Gras en terrine presents contrasting sweet-savoury tastes, with salty, smoked home-cured pork and French foie gras marinated in plum Sake and wrapped in a port wine jelly; a French classic gone tropical with dollops of mango and palm sugar gel.
The Fresh Caught Fish sounds simple, but unexpectedly reveals smooth snapper in creamy coconut curry sauce, contrasting with earthy textured, crunchy breadcrumbs.
Next, Kiwami Beef Tataki, with thin slivers of premium-grade beef cooked medium rare, enhanced with eringgi mushrooms, daikon and onion dressing, entertains with pure western-influenced Japanese classics.
The final act, Valrhona Chocolate, may lack in theatrics, but who cares, with sinfully rich chocolate infused with fruit and cream. This show is over, but we want an encore.