Under an hour by ferry from Singapore, Bintan is an option for Singaporeans looking for a quick getaway and an all-encompassing relaxing experience. Visitors will find themselves inundated with a range of luxurious resorts to choose from. Of particular note is the Banyan Tree Bintan Resort, which effortlessly offers up a host of amenities paired with convenience.
Beyond the range of activities, facilities and amenities available, guests can treat themselves to a range of gastronomic delights found on-site at the various dining spots scattered around the grounds of the resort.
Trip101 was recently invited to sample the food over at the resort, with an itinerary that peaks with the one-night-only “Best of Bintan” experience. A six-course degustation set dinner prepared by the Head Chefs from six different resorts, each course in this dining experience hint of the quality of the gastronomic delights up for grabs at the resorts around.
Read on to find out about the restaurants at Banyan Tree Bintan that we tried, as well as the “Best of Bintan” experience.
Dining options at Banyan Tree Bintan
When you check into your private villa at the Banyan Tree, you have access to the amenities at neighbouring resorts, Cassia Bintan and Angsana Bintan. This includes additional dining options should you wish for more diversity for your meals.
Xana Beach Club - Angsana
Right by the beach, this spot is perfect for a quick lunch bite after hitting the morning surf. As the sunsets, the venue is transformed with the bar coming to live, accompanied by a grill serving up fresh seafood and various cuts of meat. If you are looking for some authentic fare, try the Sate Ayam, where cuts of Chicken are then skewered and grilled. If you crave for some western cuisine instead, this lunch venue allows for guests to customize pizzas with various toppings, from the standard Pepperoni to Beef Rendang, an unlikely sight that nonetheless works well. There’s a small sand pit for groups with children, something to keep the kids pre-occupied after their hearty meal.
Xana Beach Club
Opening Hours: Lunch 11:30 – 17:00, Dinner 18:00 – 23:00
The Cove - Banyan Tree
The Cove serves up quality Mediterranean cuisine, with the option of both indoor and outdoor seating. Among their recommended dish are the Foie Gras and Lobster dishes. The Foie Gras brings about a burst of flavour with every bite as you tackle the perfectly cooked dish, with a side of bread available for you to wipe clean the dish of any remnant of the rich gravy. Be assured that you will not have to tackle the shell when you order the Lobster at The Cove. Coming out de-shelled, you can tuck into the decadent dish without any hassle. You can enjoy all these dishes together with the fantastic view as The Cove seats overlooking the oceanview, just a flight of stairs above the nearby beach.
Opening Hours: All Day 11:30 – 23:00
TreeTops - Banyan Tree
Overlooking the South China Sea, head over to the Rooftop Restaurant for your breakfast buffet spread. Featuring a blend of authentic local fare as well as International dishes, there’s something for everyone there. You can order eggs prepared to your preference before grabbing a plate and tackling the buffet.
Opening Hours: Breakfast: 07:00 – 10:30 Lunch: 11:30 – 17:00 Dinner: 18:00 – 23:00
The Best of Bintan dishes
Head over to TreeTops restaurant at night for a cosy atmosphere, perfect for romantic dinners for couples, or a spot for epicurean to sample quality Indonesian fare.
Starting off with a bang, Chef Subgguh from The Canopi prepared a dish of Otak Otak (more commonly known in Singapore as Otah), with Crab meat on a bed of Cincalok. The aroma of banana leaves came through clearly and paired well with the blend of crab meat and spices. A favourite amongst the table, this dish certainly set the tone of the night, leaving us with a high expectation that was not disappointed.
The second course features Mie Tarempa by Chef Angga, hailing from Angsana Bintan. Bearing resemblance to what Singaporeans will term “Mee Pok”, the handmade flat noodles came stir-fried with chilli paste and soya sauce allowing for a pleasant mouth fill as each noodle is coated with the splendid blend of flavour from a chilli paste and soya sauce sourced from the Anambas district area in the Riau Archipelago. On the side were vegetables and smoked local tuna, providing a burst of umami that elevates the dish.
The third course features Chef Wali’s (Nirwana Garden) authentic Iga Sapi Soup, with slow-cooked ribs that are infused in local spices – anise, cinnamon, and clove, and topped with a dash of lime juice and green chilli paste to accentuate the tantalising flavours.
A wonderful intermission, Chef Ratnawatii’s (Banyan Tree Bintan) Sorbet Calamansi came as a pleasant palate cleanser. Sweet, but not cloying with the sourness from the Calamansi that balances out the dish nicely.
The first main course was a display of creativity. The Samudra Sari Lautcreated, the brainchild of Chef Nizam (Bintan Lagoon). Featuring a steamed and seared red snapper roulade. The fish is then stuffed with minced prawns and scallop rolled with a nori sheet. A rich laksa sauce can then be poured over the dish, providing a bridge between the mix of flavour, allowing for a pleasant experience.
Coming in strong with the second main course is the Na Tinombur. Duck fillets, seasoned with Andaliman pepper (peppercorn from North Sumatera) and Kecombrang (ginger torch). It is then sous-vide, slow-cooked at a precise temperature, allowing for juicy tender meat with a perfect doneness throughout. The dish is then served with the spicy and citrusy homemade Kecombrang Chili Salsa.
Ending off on a sweet note, we are treated to two different desserts. Chef Ratna’s first offering, the Bintan Fantasy offers up a steamed pandan layer cake, complemented with a quenelle of homemade jackfruit ice cream and vanilla tuile.
Coming along shortly is are four different Indonesian sweet treats. Klepon, more commonly referred to as Ondeh-Ondeh in Singapore, Lapis Legit (Bintan’s famous layered cake), Ceker Ayam (sometimes referred to as Chicken cookies), Ting Ting Kacang (a peanut snack), bring this suptuous meal to a satisfactory close.
Each dish was carefully paired with a selection of Indonesian wine from Hatten Wines. Complementing the dish well, each glass of wine was specially selected by Ibu Kertawidyawati, President of Indonesia Sommelier Association – Bali Chapter.
The writer was offered a media trip to Banyan Tree Bintan in exchange for a review of the venue.
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