Matt Gross Explores Food in Ubud, Bali

The kind of guy you want at the dinner table, not just because of his charisma, wit and bright blue eyes!

With over 50 countries under his belt — globe trotting is nothing new for Matt. Read about some of his adventures in the “Getting Lost Series” with the NY times. Matt travelled to 8 different cities in 8 different countries — with nothing but the clothes on his back (and in his back back) — to explore and discover these new places in the most authentic way… pretty badass.

‘Millennials’ take heed… that means, no google maps or ‘travel hacks’.

Retired editor of, and the “Frugal Traveler” for the New York Times. Matt passionately continues to write about food and travel.

Current projects: Editor in Chief of Panna, a video recipe start up. He’s also working on his own book project, the global history of the chilli pepper, which brought him to Indonesia — stay tuned for this!

When he’s not hunting Sambals across Indonesia, he lives in Brooklyn, NYC, with his wife and two daughters.

A photo of Matt Gross with the kids

Why did Matt choose Roam?
“I was curious about how it actually worked. I’ve been to a lot of coworking spaces and travelled all around Asia. I am curious about new developments in the area of travel, how are people being expats today or is it something in between? I wondered if it was exactly the same as its been for the last 20 years… I wanted to see if it was a step forward …”

A photo of Sulawesi, Indonesia
Sulawesi, Indonesia

Did Roam make it easier to travel solo?
Finding people to work with and to fit into the work\travel dynamic was really hard before, Roam made it really easy for me to think less about navigation and put more time towards other things, like my project and experiences, which is really cool. I’ve done my fair share of laundry in local rivers, faced the challenges of getting set up in a new place, many successes and failures on my own — but at some point, you just want to get to a place and not worry about all of those things — that’s what Roam provides.

Favourite thing about Roam?
The kitchen. Making coffee in the morning and afternoon, talking to whoever is in there at that time. Normal things, like you would do at home. People always pass through the kitchen, it never fails to bring people together. All of the regularly scheduled events, movie night, dinners and outings were awesome. It’s pretty great here in terms of community! The community managers… they were in my face all the time in a good way, they clearly know what’s going on around UBUD and that’s nice.

Have a glimpse into some of Matt’s amazing adventures in Indonesia below!

A photo of a lady in Ubud all dolled up for the day!
“All dolled up”

Exploring the infamous Tomohon traditional market in Sulawesi.

A photo of a street vendor saucing up the chicken before it hits the charcoal
Saucing up the chicken before it hits the charcoal

Sate Ayam Bulungan warung — a local favourite in Jakarta for Indonesia’s infamous Sate

A photo of Pork belly grilled over coconut husks and served with a fiery sambal at “Ragey Von-Von”
Pork belly grilled over coconut husks and served with a fiery sambal at “Ragey Von-Von”

Matt’s words:

“Ragey Von Von, is supposedly the best. Why? I asked a fellow customer. It’s the hot sauce, he said”. — (this place is such a legend, it doesn’t even have a place on the internet)

A photo of Matt testing out street food in Indonesia
Matt tests out street food in Indonesia

A photo of traditional Sambal making in UBUD, Bali
Traditional Sambal making in UBUD, Bali

Matt’s words:

“This guy was one of 100+ men preparing a vast amount of food offerings for a local cremation ceremony. And yes, we all got to sample what will go to the spirits on Saturday. Let me tell you, the ghost world is eating well!”

Matt left us with a world of inspiration, cultural insight, some homemade Sambal and… hungrier than ever — we miss him already!

Follow his adventures on twitter Matt Gross

Make this life a wonderful adventure.

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