Indonesia: Warung Ibu Oka

For lunch, Made asked us if we'd had suckling pig yet.  Uh, yes we did, but that's irrelevant.  We're always up for more suckling pig.  We asked Made to take us to the best suckling pig in Ubud and he in turn took us to Warung Ibu Oka:

Warung Ibu Oka was made famous by Anthony Bourdain and No Reservations.  It got so popular that it now has three locations.  Made took us to the two story one.

The first floor is taken up by regular tables and chairs while the second floor consists of low tables and floor mats:

Definitely not super crowded, but still quite a lot of tourists.

I was really excited about eating at Ibu Oka because that episode of No Reservations has always been my absolute favorite.  Whenever I feel down, I think about that giant pig on a spit being bathed in coconut juice and my lips can't help but curl into a smile.  I also inevitably start to salivate.

Every single one of us, including Made, got the special (55,000 IDR or almost $5):

For once, we all agreed not to share.  It wasn't even up for debate.  Everyone got their own.  The special came with rice, veggies, pork meat, fried fat, a sausage (tasted like blood sausage), and of course, pork skin.

Having learned my lesson the first time we had suckling pig or babi guling, I asked to have mine not spicy.  Apparently "not spicy" to Indonesians means "mild tongue burning."  T laughed it off as me being my usual drama queen self.  She'd ordered spicy but she couldn't taste the heat at all.  It was only after I forced her to take a bite off of my plate that she conceded that mine was in fact, quite spicy.  Looks like they got our orders mixed up.  So much paaaaaain.

Thank goodness I ordered something to drink.  While everyone else went for fresh coconut juice, my sister and I got an avocado juice and a melon juice:

Sadly, I think Warung Ibu Oka was over-hyped up for me.  I expected to be completely blown away, but I wasn't.  Don't get me wrong, the pork was excellent.  So juicy and tender.  The pork skin was oh-so-crisp and the gorengan, which Made explained to us was actually just fried fat (see red crispy matter in lower left corner of photo above) was hands down genius.  I just...expected more.  I wanted to drool over a huge sheet of pork skin and all I got was a dinky little circle.  And it didn't taste better or worse than what we had at Depot Melati, where it was certainly cheaper.

I'm not saying you shouldn't go.  In fact, you really should.  If you want to check out Warung Ibu Oka, make sure you go earlier in the day.  We actually tried to go again for dinner the next day since we were in the area, but as we started walking up the street, a man walked toward us and informed us that Ibu Oka had sold out of pork and was closed for the night.  Don't let that happen to you!

Warung Ibu Oka
Jl Suweta/Tegal Sari 2
Ubud, Bali 80571, Indonesia


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