Come Dine With Us

Published April 12, 2018 in Amenities, RESORT

A number of things can transform a good vacation into an exceptional experience. And one of these is food. A full day of diving, snorkeling or beach time at Wakatobi Resort can work up quite an appetite, and guests would probably be satisfied at meal time if all we did was provide a sufficient range of fresh, appetizing food choices. But that’s not our way. In keeping with our desire to make every visit an exceptional experience, mealtime becomes much more than just a chance to fill up before the next adventure. In fact, many guests consider the dining to be a truly memorable element of the Wakatobi experience.

Stroll past the restaurant and you’re likely to savor the aromas of baked goods made fresh daily by Wakatobi’s pastry chef. Photo by Marco Fierli

Stroll past the restaurant and you’re likely to savor the aromas of baked goods made fresh daily by Wakatobi’s pastry chef. Photo by Marco Fierli

A feast for the senses

It’s been said that a good meal is a feast for both the tongue and the eyes. That being the case, the first visual appetizer presented to guests at Wakatobi is the Restaurant itself. From bungalows and villas, diners follow sand pathways through a coconut grove to the restaurant. Often, they are met with the tangy scents of Indonesian spices and the savory aromas of fresh baked goods on approach. Once there, they are personally greeted and have the choice of a table inside the open-air, thatch-roof dining hall, or a seating on the outdoor terraces that flank the sides of the restaurant. Either way, they will enjoy relaxing views of the beach and ocean. Sea breezes usually waft gently through the dining room, but during times when calm might prevail, glass partitions can be closed to provide more comfort. From the views to the aromas and the warm and personal welcomes, the entire experience is designed to appeal to all the senses.

This short video offers a taste of Wakatobi’s dining experience.

Selection, with service

As diners make their way to a table of choice, they receive a warm welcome from the serving team. This could be a time to relax as requested beverages arrive, but hungry arrivals can cut right to the chase and begin their meal selection at the restaurant’s serving stations. An array of appetizers, salads, entrees, breads and desserts are displayed buffet-style, but the presentation is a far cry from the average steam table assembly. Rather than create dishes en mass then let them sit, Wakatobi’s culinary team constantly refreshes individual offerings as needed. This just-in-time approach to buffet service takes extra effort, but we feel it is well worth it to ensure that guests are served the freshest culinary creations without having to wait.

Wakatobi’s just-in-time approach to buffet service is well worth the effort to ensure guests are served the freshest culinary creations without having to wait. Photo by Wakatobi Resort

Our just-in-time approach to buffet service is well worth the effort to ensure Wakatobi’s guests are served the freshest culinary creations without having to wait. Photo by Wakatobi Resort

And if you aren’t in the mood for self service, no problem. The wait staff is more than happy to bring the food your way, whether it’s a sushi sampler, a savory bowl of Soto Ayam or one of the pastry chef’s cant-resist desserts. “The staff have mastered the art of being attentive without being a nuisance,” says guest Polly Snape. “They are all friendly and can’t do enough to please you and ensure your stay is top notch.”

Compliments to the Chef

When we refer to Wakatobi’s culinary team as chefs, it’s not hyperbole. Our kitchen is managed by talented professionals who have worked internationally at a variety of fine dining establishments. They bring their experiences with world cuisines to Wakatobi, where they also embrace regional flavors and recipes. Many dishes are based on locally-sourced ingredients that include a range of fresh produce, fruit, and seafood.

Our chefs bring their experiences with world cuisines to Wakatobi, using a range of locally-sources ingredients, meats and fresh seafoods.

Our chefs bring their experiences with world cuisines to Wakatobi, using a range of locally-sources ingredients, meats and fresh seafoods. Photo by Marco Fierli

These are complemented by provisions delivered fresh to the resort’s airstrip from points around the globe. The kitchen is known for serving premium meats—including exceptional steaks and roasts—and guests can enjoy cheeses from Europe, and wines from Chile, France, Italy, Australia and South Africa to name a few. And of course there are the rich spices. To cap off the dining experience, a dedicated team of pastry chefs create a tempting confections that make desert difficult to pass up. “Their chefs really know what they are doing,” says guest Julian Ritchey. “Everything was cooked and presented perfectly. The food was delicious, and you couldn’t ask for a better selection or variety.”

Please ask

As tempting as daily offerings are, there may be times when guests have a taste for something that’s not on the serving table. This isn’t a problem. Our serving staff learn each guest’s personal preferences, and the chefs are more than happy to fulfill special requests. It could be something as simple as serving up a bowl of fresh pasta for a guest who expressed a desire for spaghetti, or creating a special plant-based entree.

“I am a vegetarian and there were always multiple, delicious options,” says Dr. Robert Jacobs. “In addition, the chef is always prepared to make anything extra that you want.”

With advanced notice, the culinary team can also handle a range of special requests for guests who require special diets such as nut-free, vegan or gluten-free meals. “The staff is super attentive, and they accommodated our many diet restrictions with ease,” says JoAnne Larsen. “Tell them once what you need or can’t have, and you never have to mention it again.” Some of the most popular guest requests are for regional specialties that showcase the flavors of Indonesia. “I asked the chef for some of the Indonesian recipes, and am enjoying them so much,” says JoAnne Larsen.

Beyond the dining room

Guests appreciate the restaurant’s garden setting and ocean views, but can also enjoy meals in more private settings. On request, breakfast can be served on the front porch of a bungalow, or on the waterfront deck of a Villa. Other special dining experiences can include a picnic lunch basket that can be taken to a secluded stretch of beach, or a private dinner served on the beach.

Many guests enjoy meals and snacks at their bungalow or villa. Photo by Marco Fierli

Many guests enjoy meals and snacks at their bungalow or villa. Photo by Marco Fierli

“We were lucky enough to enjoy a private meal on the beach for our anniversary” says Dave Snape. We had a designated waiter who stood in the dark under the trees waiting to serve us whenever we needed food or wine. That felt a bit unusual because I’ve never experienced that kind of five-star service before. But, that’s what Wakatobi does so well. They make your stay so perfect that you don’t lift a finger.”

Isn’t it time for a taste of Wakatobi? Complete a quick trip inquiry today. Or email office@wakatobi.com

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