Seniman - A Coffee Lovers Paradise
As a bit of a coffee lover and coffee fiend, wherever Lucy and I go, I often find myself searching out where to get a decent cup of coffee. In India, this obsession was reduced by the delicious masala chai available for pennies on every street corner, but throughout South East Asia, where Lipton is considered the connoisseur's tea, coffee becomes an important necessity! Luckily, when we were in Ubud, the Seniman Coffee Studio stepped up to the saucer and offered up some delicious and incredible experimental coffees.
Seniman was founded by David and Rodney in 2012, and their passion for coffee is clear. As well as coffee, they serve up some delicious meals (more on that later) in their coffee studio, while across the road, they roast all their own beans, and delve into the wonderful world of cold brew coffee.
Seniman roast all of their own coffee. When we asked David why, he simply said that "Roasting is cooking the seed of a fruit. It's so important to understand and to control. We wouldn't really want anyone else to do it for us... It's like a chef just plating someone else's food." It's strange to think that fewer people don't think this way!
When we went to visit, we were shown round by the knowledgeable and friendly Leo. As a native Indonesian, it was clear that he wanted us to try some of the amazing Indonesian dishes that Seniman have on their menu, and to experience the offers available from their cold brew bar.
I tried the "Nitro Bali Kintamani Cold Brew"...quite the mouthful! It's coffee, brewed for 12 hours, infused with nitrogen. And it's delicious! It's served with this bowl of fruit and veg you see below.
As Lucy isn't into coffee as much as me, she opted for the "Sumatra Lampung Smoked Cacao Nitro with Palm Sugar". Again, quite a mouthful I think you'll agree! This one is basically chocolate mousse in a glass.
After this delicious introduction to the wonderful world of coffee, it was time to get involved in the food menu. Seniman actually means artist, so Leo promised that we'd have some delicious looking food heading our way.
We definitely over-ordered! All the food was absolutely delicious, and the portions are pretty huge!
The Gado Gado, was simply epic. I would definitely recommend this as the best dish we tried. It's completely different to any Gado Gado you'll try anywhere else, and looks as good as it tastes. As with all the other dishes, everything is great quality and sourced ethically.
The team at Seniman take great pride in their work. They treat every cup of coffee as if they are scientists. Everything is measured to within 0.1 grams. As Lucy pointed out while we were in the Coffee Studio, "These guys are like the Heston Blumenthal of coffee"!
Finally, as if we hadn't eaten or drunk enough yet, we got another couple of drinks, including this amazing matcha latte for Lucy, while asking David and Rodney some questions. The local community is obviously important to them, "We feel its important to be involved and active. We develop talent from within our staff team, and invest in training and qualifications for our team to have skills for lifelong careers not just a job. We work with our local banjar village leaders to ensure we support the local community around our business."
Seniman is based at 5, Jl. Sriwedari, Ubud. Go and say hi from us!
Massive thanks to the whole team at Seniman; Rodney and David for answering our questions and giving us their time, Leo for giving us such a great amount of time and info and generally being great at life, and all the baristas, chefs and other staff who made our visit hugely enjoyable.