Lovo Night at "Bula Re" in Savusavu
Vanua Levu - Fiji. (A Night for the Tourists)
Once a week, on a Wednesday night, Savusavu's German-owned tourist restaurant, Bula Re, has a Lovo night with a set menu at a set price.
If you want to sit at one of the coveted terrace tables overlooking the garden and the harbour be sure to book in advance and be prepared to share your table with other diners if necessary.
Arrive at 6pm, just before the sun sets, if you want to get a good look at the underground oven, know in Fiji as a lovo, before it gets dark.
Underneath this smoking pile of earth, stones and banana leaves, our dinner has been cooking for several hours.
Once darkness has fallen, it is time to open up the lovo. The earth is removed and the leaves are revealed.
And, once the leaves are unwrapped, at last, we arrive at the food.
Guests are allowed to choose three items from the lovo. I picked lamb, prawns with pumpkin and fish. Additionally there were a lot of cassavas being baked in the lovo. For my liking, too many of those dull root vegetables ended up on my plate.
I didn't really care much for the food from the lovo. The fish, in particular, was unfortunately overcooked (like most of the fish I tried in Fiji). The very best part of the meal was actually the rourou leaves with coconut, otherwise known as palusami which I want to try and recreate at home, perhaps with spinach or some other suitable leaf.
Dessert was really good too. It didn't look much, but the Vudi Vakasoso, plantain with coconut milk, was surprisingly delicious.
Bula Re is certainly a Westernized restaurant. You will see more tourists than locals dining here. The food is slow arriving after you have ordered, but this won't matter if you are vacationing because you are going to be on Fiji-time anyway. It is worth the wait because all of the food at Bula Re is freshly prepared for you, from scratch. To drink, beer and wine is available but the choice is limited. On Lovo night they offer pricey cocktails and free tastings of the local brew, Kava too.
Restaurant Café Bula Re
Main Street Savusavu
Tel/fax: (679) 885-0307
open Monday through Saturday from 9 a.m. until 10 p.m. (closed Sunday)
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