Mojito. Deep red velvet curtains. Shimmering chandeliers. Avant-garde art. Late night vibes.
This is not your average Ubud hangout. Smoothies and bamboo give way to sensual decadence, the crowd more Euro hip than Ubud boho.
This is Berlin meets Bali.
I’m at the opening of VELVET, the latest restaurant and late night bar to hit the outskirts of Ubud.
Chef Hiram Rios is delivering bite size plates of his Mexican inspired Bali style food with the passion of an artist. Tatjana is quietly working the crowd, her velvet high heels making a statement with every step.
They are a passionate creative duo. Tatjana, is a visual artist with a background in the music industry. Hiram, a chef and a drummer, guitarist and keyboardist on the side. Both have travelled extensively, creating projects in Mexico and Germany.
When I ask how they came to be partners, Tatjana confesses it is a tale of love, meeting in Bali at time in her life when she least expected it. The place is oozing with passion, the type that only comes from heartfelt efforts. In their words…
“We’ve created Velvet for us. A place where love would lie in the details, where the lights would be low. A place where the feeling would be as potent as the food and drinks.”
The bar staff, elegantly dressed in waistcoats and bow ties are centre stage. I like the sound of the dragonfruit margerita and if my mojito was anything to go by their cocktails live up to their promise….
“Velvet’s handcrafted cocktails have you covered with everything from the classics done right to innovative, tropical creations.”
Spirits, wines by the glass and bottle, as well as non-alcoholic cocktail creations are on the drinks menu.
The food menu is intriguing. Here’s a little taste….
Las Guacamayas: Veggies Tostaditas with Carrot Mousse, Alfalfa & Feta Cheese. Tramafad: Chicken Breast Fajitas in Beetroot Cream with Hints of Chile Chipotle. Pinche Pollo: Chicken Drumlet & Fajitas in Sweet-Spicy Homemade Chocolate & Grains Sauce. Daval Del Lis: White Snapper Cured in Citrus Marinade in a Mix with Corn, Carrot, Shallot, Avocado & Coriander Salad.
The bite size tastes on the opening night were delicious. I have no doubt any plate of food leaving Chef Hiram’s kitchen in the future will be a work of art.
As I sit in my plush velvet chair I muse over the different late night vibes in Bali. Last night I dressed in traditional lace kebaya, sarong and scarf, my destination Pura Dalem, for a temple ceremony that went on into the early hours of the morning. Tonight, I traded the kebaya for a lace dress and slightly wicked cocktails.
Both nights were full of mystery, shimmering beauty, incredible art and passionate beliefs. I love my village life, it brings a richness to every day that I never imagined possible, but I’m leaving room for a mojito or two!
Velvet is your late night destination for mystery, indulgence, maybe a little romance and cocktails. Dress up.
Open 5 p.m.-Midnight | Thursday-Tuesday | Jl. Raya Lungsiakan, across from Fly Café
Contact: Facebook. Website is coming soon.
By the way….
It’s no surprise that Tatjana is also the co-creator of one of the coolest spots in town…. Lazy Cats Cafe. Tucked away upstairs in an unusual space on the edge of Ubud, it’s one of my fave places for breakfast or an afternoon wine. The décor is equally stunning, the artistry intriguing. Read about it here.