Ubud restaurant

In Ubud, Bali, Indonesia, Restaurant Bali Yoga — located on the left side of Jalan Kajeng a 3- to 5-minute walk up from Jalan Raya — seems like a curious name for this little jewel of a place. The husband and wife who own it told me they named it after their first child, a son, Yoga.

I had asked them about the name of the restaurant. In Bali, there is a system of naming each child according to caste and the order of birth and often regardless of gender (Wayan and Putu are typical firstborn names). They said they just wanted to name their son something different and so named him Yoga. Also, they consider it a name of good luck.

The owners have extensive restaurant experience, including cooking stints at the famous Casa Luna in Ubud, and an authentic, well-prepared, wonderfully fragrant meal awaits anyone who ventures here.

From the complimentary peanuts served upon arrival to the steamed-banana-in-coconut-milk dessert plus everything in between — like Ikan Bekar (grilled tuna catch of the day), Indonesian satays or Balinese-style chicken cacciatore — everything is mouthwateringly good and always served up with a smile.

The best reason to leave happy at the end of the meal — the main courses, served with rice and vegetables, cost the equivalent of about $3! Extra-large, ice-cold beers cost less. Cash only.

It’s the best-kept secret in Ubud! The atmosphere is casual, comfortable and cozy. We visited in August ’08 and cannot wait to go back.

Malden, MA