When Watercress first opened in Batu Belig a few years back, they were pretty much an instant hit for their modern Aussie-style vibes and food, so it wasn’t too long before they opened another venue up the hill in U-town. Watercress Ubud seems to be just as popular as their southern sister, maybe because it’s smack dab in the middle of Monkey Forest Road, maybe because they’ve got amazing coffee, or maybe because their menu is super seductive. We’re pretty sure it’s a combo of all three.
Watercress Ubud is set in a breezy two-storey space, so you’ve got plenty of seating options including a small outdoor patio at street level, which is great for people watching or coffee and cigarettes if that’s your jam. Inside (which is non-smoking in case you were wondering) there’s a coffee bar done up in blue and white Peranakan style tiles and an open-plan dining room with comfy bench seating and wooden tables. Head towards the sign in the back that says ‘Love is in the Kitchen’, and you’ll find stairs leading up to a breezy upper floor space.
Before we even get into the food here, we need to talk about the coffee. Watercress uses a special coffee blend from Revolver Espresso that’s made with 100% Arabica beans from Papua, Guatemala and Colombia, roasted and blended here in Bali. Order a latte, long black or a mocha and the barista will pull your shot through their retro La Marzocco machine, passing it through a double hit of coffee grounds so you get that creamy double ristretto flavour. And in true Ubud hipster and hippie fashion, you have your choice of soy, almond or coconut milk in addition to regular milk.
We’ve tried a number of dishes here on a few different occasions, and the best so far has been the Watercress Eggs Benedict (Spinach IDR 75K, Ham IDR 80K, Bacon IDR 80K, Smoked Salmon IDR 90K). Everything about this benny is done right from the proper English muffins to the perfectly poached organic eggs, the thinly sliced ham, the buttery home made Hollandaise sauce and the colourful sprigs of watercress on the top. The slow-roasted tomatoes on the side are also a nice touch. Definitely at the top of our list for best eggs bennies in Ubud.
For breakfast the Spanish Chorizo & Baked Eggs (IDR 80K) comes with sautéed chorizo, cannelloni, a tangy tomato sauce, and Parmesan on top that adds a nice gooey consistency. This is definitely a tasty dish, but at this price, we wish the portion size was a bit bigger and that there were more than just two thin slices of sourdough that were more like a garnish than a substantial sauce-sopping-up side. More sourdough please.
For lunch you’ve got your choice of gourmet burgers, big salads and open sandwiches. Our fave is the Goat Cheese & Home Made Pesto (IDR 65K) which comes with a base of toasted sourdough slathered in pesto and topped with vine-ripened tomatoes, decent amounts of goat cheese, sliced shallots and fresh basil leaves. This is a solid option if you want something light, fresh and packed with flavour.
We also tried the B.L.A.S.T (IDR 75K), a toasted sandwich with crispy bacon, lettuce, avocado, sprouts and tomato on a sesame seed bun, because anything that combines avocado and bacon in one easy-to-eat package is a winner in our books. Our only complaint about the B.L.A.S.T. was that the chilli relish added a weird sweetness to the sammie. Not sure why the new hispter thing is to add sweet jams and relishes to everything, but that seems to be the trend.
Watercress Ubud is a solid spot for Western-style breakfasts, fresh lunches, mid-day coffee and people-watching breaks and evening cocktails with more substantial dinner dishes. They’ve got some seriously great coffee, a good mix of vegetarian and non-veggie dishes made with super fresh ingredients, and the prices are pretty on par with what you’d pay elsewhere on Monkey Forest or any other central Ubud locale. There are definitely a few dishes that we’ll be coming back for… we’re looking at you Watercress Eggs Benny.
Jalan Monkey Forest
T: +62 0361 976 127
H: Daily: 7:30am – 11:30pm