Balinese cuisine offers a distinctive flavor due to a variety of ingredients and preparations. Unfortunately, amidst the increasing popularity of Bali as an international tourist destination, Bali itself has not been able to better promote the cuisine. Many foreign tourists have not known it. Similarly, hotels rarely offer it to their guests. It was revealed in the seminar entitled Back to Basic Workshop featuring “Traditional Meets Modern” held by the Indonesian Tourism Industry Association (GIPI) or Bali Tourism Board (BTB) at Rumah Bali at Tanjung Benoa, recently.
Committee Chairman, Ida Bagus Nirarta, said that the results of research indicated that about 80 percent of tourists coming to Bali never tried Balinese traditional dishes. “Most of them assume that Balinese food only consists of fried rice, chicken satay and gado-gado,” said the Head of the GIPI Bali Secretariat. Heinz van Holzen, a famous chef from Germany, said that one of the fundamental problems was the lack of standardization in the flavor of Balinese cuisines. “There should be a standard, like French, Japanese and many other foreign cuisines so that whenever tourists come here they will be able to taste the same flavor,” he said.
According to him, many tourists coming to Bali wanted to try the local cuisines. Unluckily, very few restaurants that offered those cuisines, while there was no hotel serving them. The workshop was not different from other cooking classes in general. All participants were briefed about the basic ingredients of Balinese traditional cuisines followed by cooking practice directly under the guidance of Heinz. The material was emphasized on the standardization in the five Balinese traditional spices which was used in the making of Balinese food such as Base Gede, Base Be Celeng, Base Be Kambing, Base Jukut, and Base Be Siap. (BTN/015)