Paying homage to the Asian street food culture, this exotic joint is more than ready to carve out its name on Bali’s yummiest street. Lantern presents discerning diners—those with a penchant for travel and tasty sidewalk stops—with an authentic yet elevated dining experience, and these efforts extend not only to the menu, but also to the décor. From the distinctive yellow lanterns hanging overhead to the Vietnamese propaganda posters plastered on its white-brick walls, the restaurant amplifies its cheerful colors typical of Asia with ornaments literally plucked from representative South East Asian destinations such as Hanoi—making your feel like you’re right in the middle of it all. Juxtaposing traditional wooden stools and contemporary wall art within its clean industrial-esque interior, Lantern successfully fuses ‘hawker stall’ feels with modern and personal, laid-back atmosphere.
Despite its unassuming exterior, Lantern’s extensive range of tasty morsels celebrates flavours from all over South East Asia. The grazing share menu (Rp.125,000++) is a great way to kick off a fabulous feast with friends—sample a little bit of everything that includes Pandan Chicken, Thai Fish Cakes, Korean Chicken Wings, Fresh Rice Paper Rolls and Spring Rolls. Vietnamese fans pho-sure need to get their hands on the omnipresent slow-stewed ‘12-Hour Pho’ (Rp.85,000++), adopted straight from Lantern’s famed sister restaurant Bo & Bun. I couldn’t think of anything better than to embark on my short savory sojourn with the palate-pleasing Crispy Belly Pork (slow-cooked for 18 hours!)—the ultimate triple treat of crunchy crackling skin, juicy fat, and succulent meat dipped into delicious nouc cham dipping sauce, priced at Rp65,000++. The Penang Chicken Curry (Rp.75,000++), in which fresh coriander leaves add a bright note to the thick, deeply flavoured broth and served the original Penang way with fresh flaky Roti Canai, instantly transported me back to the vibrant streets of Georgetown and its ubiquitous street eats. Heaven in bowl? You bet. Though the generous portion of the curry did curb my hunger, I could not help but succumb to my inner voice of temptation—in this case, the decadently creamy Thai Tea Crème Brûlée (Rp.55,000++) topped with delicious caramelized, torched crust that cracked just so.
It was right then when my caffeine cravings kicked in, so naturally I opted for one of their signature Asian float, Saigon (Rp.45,000++), a fizzy yummy spin of soda and gelato that surprisingly complements the classic nutty taste of the world-famous Vietnamese iced coffee just nicely. Other Lantern’s Specialties include Sakura, a ruby-hued blend of black tea, fresh strawberries, lime, and raspberry sorbet—tarty and tasty.
on a nutshell
The rich cultural streets, rich flavors and bright colors typical of cities like Bangkok, Saigon, and Penang come together in the most mouthwateringly delicious fashion in Lantern. Whether you are a transient visitor longing to be taken back to the street vendors encountered during your travel or a foodie just looking for a tasty start to your night, this Asian eatery seeks to delight your taste buds with the ultimate comfort food that leaves you wanting for more.
Jl. Raya Petitenget 17E,
T: +62 361 733 192
As published in Hello Bali January 16 issue
Text by Fitri Maharani
Photography by Hastosa