Cuca Sessions with Cuca Flavor

Last week, I attended a very exciting casual seminar from the invitation that I got from the representatives of this new restaurant called "Cuca", which is planned to be opening in Jimbaran, Bali around the end of July, just in time for a family vacay (so excited for it!!!). I'm definitely going to this restaurant and going beastly feast! Looks like I am super duper excited, but why? What makes me so excited about this restaurant which has not even opened? Okay let me tell you everything about the session and definitely, everything about Cuca.

This seminar...err...I don't even want to call it a seminar because it's a lot more fun and less formal, I will call it Cuca Session instead. The "session" was held at Function Room, One Park Residence Building C, this is the very time that I've ever been to One Park and I rarely drive so I always take cab instead. I'm not a very good Jakarta traffic officer, so it's better to take cabs even though you have to pay more, and plus, it's less tiring.

Cuca is owned by Chef Kevin Cherkas and Virginia Entizne and they both are husband and wife. To be honest, aside from all the personal things in their life that I don't know, I feel like they make a perfect couple for one another. I LOVE THEM!!! At the beginning of the session, Kevin even told us that marrying Virginia was the best decision he's ever made. How romantic. *mirror my lonely self*.

I'm going to tell you a little background about Kevin and Virginia. Kevin is a chef and he has worked with top restaurants around the world and definitely working with the michelin star awarded chefs. I'm acting like I know a lot about him when infact I was reading his biography, isn't it better if I just copy paste the whole thing for you? It's also written much better too HAHAHAHA!

Chef Kevin Cherkas has an enviable track record developed in some of the world’s most outstanding restaurants.
In Spain, he honed his skills at Michelin three-star Arzak Restaurant in San Sebastian, Michelin three-star El Bulli in Roses, and Michelin two-star La Broche in Madrid. He also left his mark in New York City during his tenure with Daniel Boulud at his highly regarded Michelin three-star Daniel.
As testament to his culinary talent, he is the recipient of numerous awards. These include gold and silver medals at the Chaîne des Rôtisseurs national and regional competitions in 2003, a gold medal at the USA Chicago Culinary Salon Team Canada 2001, and three gold medals at the British Columbia Chefs Association Hot Culinary Competition in 2000, to name a few. Most notably, he joined the Bocuse d’Or World Cuisine Contest 2001 as an apprentice representative and achieved a fifth place finish.
Most recently, Chef Kevin helmed BLU at Shangri-La Hotel, Singapore and prior to that Restaurant Lafite in Shangri-La Hotel, Kuala Lumpur.

And here is a little about Virginia
Coming from the beautiful city of Salamanca in northwestern Spain where she obtained her degree at one of the oldest and most prestigious Universities in the West, Virginia’s obsession with learning and discovery has taken her on a journey eastwards for the past 12 years. After completing a Master’s degree in Business Administration, she experienced the fast pace of working in several fast-growing companies in Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia and subsequently put it all to the test when she moved to Singapore and found herself driving the exponential growth of Las Lilas School, Singapore’s premier language school.
Her success at managing and enriching customer’s experience has naturally led her to the land of hospitality: Bali. Bringing along the memories of her childhood from a country where gastronomy is a way of life and where dining is an amazing emotional experience, Virginia has fused her vision with the talent of a chef to give Bali and the world a new culinary destination.

So what is "Cuca" and why is "Cuca"?
First of all, I need to give credit for Kevin for being such a great ice breaker/speaker. He is very fun and has this bubbly personality that lights up the whole "session" so it doesn't end up bore everyone. "Cuca" is actually a nickname given by Virginia's mom and she has been calling her with "Cuca" ever since. "Cuca" itself means "dear", "love", "darling", "honey" or in Indonesia, it's "sayang". Personally I love the name "Cuca", it just sounds so fun but not cheap.

Cuca will offer you a slightly different concept from most restaurant nowadays, it's "A CASUAL SHARING EXPERIENCE: ALL ABOUT TASTE". I think Cuca's concept is almost like "PIK" restaurant types, where you don't have to wear complicated gowns, formal suits, look very well groomed etc. You just need to bring yourself, wear whatever you want and enjoy the food. It's always about the food. I also don't enjoy sitting with full suit on (even though in some occasions I need to), but honestly, everytime I have a free time to stay at home, I always wear my oversized lumpy old clothes with shorts and relax. It's much more me rather the fancier ones you see online (-.-)/"/.

The food itself is the explanation of its concept "Sharing Experience". Kevin explained that the communication occured in a restaurant mostly stop everytime the food arrived, so why not lighten up the cheerfulness and the communication the whole time we're in the restaurant, that's why it's "Sharing Experience", you can share every food served in this restaurants and Cuca focused on the three main forms: Tapas, Cocktails and Desserts.

*love its pen*

some goodies to take home.

What will Cuca look like?
There will be three main areas in Cuca: The Food Bar, The Dining Room, and The Cocktail Bar and Garden Lounge. The Food Bar is the area where there will be around 8 wooden chairs run along the impressive 8-meter-long teak. Fun thing about this area is that you can see the pre-serving action and the whole production process so you can see for yourself how fresh the process is and the materials they're using without worrying that they will spit on your food. Just kidding.

The Dining Room is definitely the one where you will have your meal at, what makes it different is that it will be surrounded by floating curtains to prodive a little casual intimacy and privacy while you're enjoying your choice of food and chilled by the view of the natural landscape.

The Cocktail Bar and Garden Lounge is the outdoor area of the restaurant, where you can sit outside, enjoy the beauty and nature while probably sipping on your favorite cocktails, chatting around, I can surely imagine that and I hope it turns out as pretty as what I've imagined.

The main idea of this "session" is to teach us to understand TASTE and FLAVOR. It's mostly science and nature sense, and something that you've learned back in junior high like the each taste acceptance on your tounge, the base flavor of chili, mint leaves and etc. The second photo is actually a Cuca pen lying on the practice paper, it's filled with fun and well designed questions and actually, on the back of the paper is THE CERTIFICATE to certify my presence in this seminar and it's already signed by Kevin...ehm.. Chef Kevin Cherkas.

The purpose of this "session" is to also teach us how to cook without recipes, sometimes that's also what I do, I feel like I know the flavor of some ingedients and I just try to mix and match everything to create my signature dish which tastes good, hahaha but sadly my signature dish level is somehow on egg omelette the furthest. I know, don't laugh.

Surprisingly, I just know that "perfume" is also a flavor, it doesn't have any taste but it gives you something with scents and you do know what it is, for example: mint leaves. I can't describe the exact flavor of mint leaves, it's just...minty, but minty doesn't exist (yes in my dictionary), but it adds something with scent and you know when you bite it, it's mint leaves.

The "session" took one hour and that's definitely one of the best "one hour" I've ever spent listening to someone talking without any boredom hits. Kevin promised us that this kind of session will occured at the restaurants and it's called: Cuca Sessions: Tasting Classes, so if you're in Bali and you want to join this, you are very much welcome.

 Another fun part is the snack time, I've been interested with the pop-corn since the beginning of the session. It smells so good it almost cheats my concentration from Kevin's presentation. Kevin told us that the popcorn is infused with "Betutu Chicken" flavor, resulting a to-die-for flavor that keeps me wanting for more. I even crave for one right now.


Love the usage of this paper. Save the earth!

To company the Betutu Chicken Popcorn, Kevin also made Sangria cocktail and mocktail beverages, depending on your interest in alcohol, I tried both, not much different but still prefer the cocktail, because it adds something more special and some sparks.

*tried to edit the pictures in real color and vintage*, this time the original color wins, the color is super tempting.

Cuca specials: I think I'd recommend Kevin to serve it in bottles instead of glass, it's just different, especially when they label it this way, it just makes it even more Cuca special.

And let's not forgetting that Cuca is also a company that sells infused salts with various flavors, they already sent me a sample before this "session", but I wasn't sure about what I supposed to do so I guess I'll find a way, they gave me another 4 so I had 5 with me. Anybody wants a free sample?!

No artificial colors added, purely fresh from the ingredients.

They told us that the a day before this "session", they made a booth to sell this salt and it went pretty successful and people's enthusiasm are pretty big for this salt. Good for them :")

Initially keeping you guys from seeing Kevin and Virginia, because they're so special, and since this might be your first time, so say Hi to these two awesome people, the middle is the most awesome already MWAHAHA JUST KIDDING! Virginia has a very beautiful pair of eyes. It's so big O.O

I love this candid shot from my sister.

A little goodies from Cuca. Thank you so much :).

I'm getting more excited about Cuca and I can't wait to see and taste it for myself. They also keep everyone updated with the construction and everything on their Facebook and their website.

Let's see how far the construction has gone...

This is the newest picture that they posted with the Cuca building at the background. It's located in such a nice area surrounded by tall trees.

Incase you want to see its construction from the very beginning, you can check its album HERE.

But of course, if you want to keep updated, follow its Facebook page and Twitter.

See you in August Cuca!!!

PS: I'm serious about the sample, if you want to try one, feel free to email me, it's for free and it's so nice to share.

Cuca Flavor
Jalan Yoga Perkanthi
Jimbaran, Bali
0821 8999 1977

email me:

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