Coffee and Thyme – Gili Air
As soon as you step off the boat to Gili Air you are greeted by crowds of fellow travellers, tourists and locals alike, ready to board their boats or to start to explore the serene island. Once you pass through the crowds, less than a few metres from the dock, in arguably one of the best locations on Gili Air, you will see Coffee and Thyme. The name coffee and thyme is actually an interesting play on words with time as the theme but with actual thyme showing up as a recurring ingredient.
In my opinion, this beautiful café restaurant is the perfect pitstop before you navigate your way to your hotel or homestay. Although, they have the coffee and cake as a great attraction as you walk by, they also offer a menu full of breakfast and lunch time delights.
On my first visit, I had just arrived off the little boat from the choppy waters and felt a tiny bit worse for wear (in other words, very seasick!). I needed something to make me feel human again, so treated myself and opted for the Gili Sandwich. This consists of vegan (yes fully vegan!) banana bread topped with tropical fruit, omitting the citrus yoghurt. The banana bread was delicious, slightly cakey and very fluffy without being sickly sweet. The tropical fruit complimented the dish and felt in sync with island life style. As I was at a cafe called coffee and thyme I had to try the coffee… right?! Therefore, I accompanied my breakfast with a soy iced vanilla latte. However, I must confess…. As most people know, I am not a coffee drinker or connoisseur, but this was just to my taste! I think they converted me…
The next day, I knew I had to return to try more. The idyllic gardens that offset the busy main road made it the perfect spot to hide out from the midday sun, whilst enjoying a delicious brunch and watching the divers train in the pool nearby. It almost motivated me to go and dive again… almost. This time I ordered the Nestled Eggs. Poached eggs in a cup with tomato, spices and toast soldiers. These were like fancy dippy and eggs and soldiers but with a middle eastern inspired spice. I liked the uniqueness of this dish. My companion also ordered the Green Club and enjoyed.
I accompanied my brunch with a cheeky vegan orange raisin blondie. I do love all the healthy raw vegan offerings in Ubud but sometimes it is nice to be able to go somewhere and be able to eat a normal yummy, cakey cake and it fit with my lactose intolerance! I love the inclusion here without presumption! The blondie was actual very tasty and I even had another cheeky soy vanilla latte because why not! (will become a coffee addict soon…maybe).
Okay so I have covered the brunch stuff, coffee and cake… what about the savoury stuff? They have a whole menu of lunch time delights, so I returned to try some. I opted for the vegetarian T wrap as it has a lombok twist to the sauce but me being me, decided to omit the carbs and take the naked version and have this as a salad, with the fluffy yet crisp potato wedges on the side. My salad was light and tasty with a very slight kick. Washed down by a pretty, fruity iced tea.
Contrary to potential belief due to the slightly westernised menu, this cafe is locally owned and employs all Indonesian staff so you are supporting locals by stopping here. Furthermore, there are so many staff wandering around the place that there is always someone to help. I constantly heard them making conversation, offering help and advice and making a few cheeky jokes. I must say that after travelling around Asia this is not always common place and it is very refreshing to have such friendly people working somewhere.
If you are ever in Gili Air make sure you stop by… you can’t miss the place and you really should not miss out on one of their yummy cakes!
Website – http://www.coffeeandthyme.co/
Address – In front of the Harbour at the Oceans 5 Dive Center, Gili Air – Lombok, Indonesia