As a designer, I am naturally drawn to anything aesthetically beautiful and attractive. Quite often, in my culinary adventure, I looked at things more from the physical side of it, which in this case, is the interior design of the venue. Sometimes I got fortunate enough to find a place with both good ambiance as well as good food, other times I did not. It is not the case though for most people, as they most often look for a place that they are familiar with.
This time I landed at a relatively new Spanish restaurant around Senopati area. Txoko is the name, and I, later on, found out that the restaurant was actually serving, more precisely, Basque cuisine. The cuisine originated from Basque county, located in the northern part of Spanish, between Spanish and France. Another interesting cuisine we learn about, tried and savored.
As we entered the premises, we were immediately welcomed with such a warm gesture by Oskar Orzelai, the Executive Chef there, and his team. The restaurant has two stories with more seating space in the upper section. However, both areas are smartly-designed with focus on warmth, relaxing and sophisticated vibe. It’s an easy and enjoyable experience taking pictures of its interior as it was so instagenically organized. Even the vanilla-coconut and island-papaya hand-soap they provide at the handwash basin are chosen to fit the atmosphere they aim to create there.
Garlic Prawns Pret-a-Porter (idr 65k) – The thinly-sliced prawns were served raw to the table and then torched by the server on the spot. This garlic-marinated prawns was truly to die for. As a seafood lover, I would recommend anyone to have a go on this menu. Must try!
Grilled Octopus w Boletus Cream (idr 70k) – Another one of their best tapas menu. The octopus was cooked well and the boletus cream, which is a mushroom-based sauce, was a great complement to the main protein of the dish.
Lamb Shank w Sweet Potato (idr 225k) – If you like lamb, this huge dish is the right choice for you to share between 2-3 persons. The meat was tender and juicy.
El Gin Tonic (idr 110k) – For dessert lover, this tonic served with lemon sorbet and cucumber jelly is positively light and refreshing. Served creatively on a half-cut Hendrick’s gin bottle, they provided added Gin tonic on a spray bottle for you to spray on the dessert to your liking. What a lovely experience.
Hot Cappuccino w Almond Milk (idr 40k + 10k) – Nice added option for lactose intolerant individuals.
Exhilaration is the right word to describe how I felt at the time. From the welcome gesture, product knowledge and service, great food and beverages, to its music selections and ambiance, I honestly couldn’t find anything lacking in Txoko. Needless to say, Txoko Jakarta got a bloated two-thumbs up from me.
If you’re keeping up with my blogs, you’ll notice that this isn’t the first time I visited Alila Hotel Jakarta. After Vong Kitchen and Le Burger, I’ve developed quite a fond experience with the 5 star hotel restaurants.
Tonight, I stepped up my game and went to the 25th floor. Walking in Hakkasan is like walking inside another dimension. As the elevator door opens, blue light greeted me, as well as the friendly hostess, and I was taken to my table straight away. Noone can deny the attraction of this circular interior restaurant. You can’t miss the gorgeous bar set in the center as well as the chilled wine cellar companion. Beyond that was the breathtaking view of SCBD area. Suffice to say that the UK based franchise restaurant, is well-presented. As this is a Cantonese dining, you can expect to see traditional Asian cuisines with modern touch.
View from the top
I started my dinner with the Supreme Dim Sum Platter (IDR 398.000): Pretty arrangement of Scallop shui mai, Seabass dumpling, Truffle har gau, Lobster crab dumpling. The dim sum are pretty spectacular looking with dominant looking black-gold Seabass dumpling. Flavor wise, I personally love the Truffle har gau the best.
Crispy Roasted Chicken with garlic and sesame (IDR 298.000): Simple roasted chicken, a little dry but fragrantful.
Crispy Roasted Chicken
Stir Fry Black Pepper Rib Eye with Merlot (IDR 428.000): Succulent and strong flavored, melt in tour mouth beef cubes. Delicious!
Stir Fry Black Pepper Rib Eye
Tofu, Aubergine, and Mushroom claypot (IDR 158.000) : Classic style vegetarian pot, good quality, average taste.
Tofu, Aubergine, and Mushroom Claypot
Last but not least, I ordered Chocolate Peanut dessert (IDR 128.000) for my birthday pal, it was literally a giant Peanut shaped chocolate, with custard, salted caramel and chocolate sauce. Over the top, fun and perfect for chocolate addicts.
Chocolate Peanut Dessert
First time impression? Love Hakassan’s service and atmosphere. I honestly can’t judge much about overall of the food with only a few dishes to share. But the experience was definitely rewarding and cathartic.
Alila Hotel, Lot 11, 25th Flr.
Jl. Jendral Sudirman Kav. 52-53
For me, the experience of visiting a new eatery could brought a similar vibe as visiting a new country. This is how I feel when I visited Sudestada. Like the meaning of its unusual name, this Argentinian/South American restaurant brings a whole new “powerful wind” to Jakarta’s culinary adventure.
You’ll know that you’re into something special as soon as you enter Sudestada. Anchoring the alluring restaurant is open flame grill kitchen. Rustic interior of two stories, high ceiling brick wall with adorned black chandeliers and hanging plants. The outdoor area’s also adorable, complete with a reflecting pond and murals on the wall.
Judging from the menu, I can’t deny the attraction that is Sudestada. From breakfast menu, to smoothie bowls, detox juices, small bites and kids meal, and many more.
Pulpo Con Papas Y Salchicha (IDR 180.000) : Roasted octopus with chorizo, potatoes and garlic mayonnaise. Fresh chewy octopus with very simple taste but undeniably good.
Pulpo Con Papas Y Salchicha
Ravioles De Espinacas (IDR 90.000): Delicate homemade raviolis with spinach, broccoli and ricotta cheese filing and pesto sauce.
Ravioles De Espinacas
Ravioles De Espinacas
Patagonian Toothfish (IDR 250.000): Baked cheese crumb coated seabass fillet, chickpeas and spinach. The fish was velvety, the crumbs were crunchy and salty and all good.
Picanha Steak (IDR 350.000): Sirloin Cap beef, which comes with personal grilling pot and condiments. The steak was flavorful and juicy.
Alfajores Small (IDR 30.000): Soft delicate Argentinian cookies with creamy dulce de leche filing and coconut flakes. It’s to die for!
Churros Von Dulce De Leche (IDR 40.000): Bite size crunchy Churros with caramel and chocolate sauce.
Churrros Von Dulce De Leche
I can say in confident that I enjoyed my first visit. In conclusion, Sudestada is the place to enjoy a countryside/modern style South American dishes and wouldn’t say no to have more of this delightful experience.
Jl. Biliton No.15
Phone : 0813 31265567
Mon – Thu , Sun 7:00 AM – 10:30 PM
Fri & Sat 7:00 AM – Midnight
I love chocolate! Well..who doesn’t right? Chocolate is one food ingredients that is probably used in 95% of sweet products, like ice cream, bread, pancake, crepe, croissant and even macaron. It is also sold as the main product itself in the form of chocolate bar, chocolate spread, chocolate powder, and other forms.
Launched in 2016, D’Lanier has opened several outlets in Bandung and Medan to introduce and sell its products in retail. In Bandung, the outlets are at Paris Van Java Mall and Paskal 23 Mall. While in Medan, D’Lanier can be found at Sun Plaza Mall.
Positioning themselves as a premium chocolate manufacturer, D’Lanier develops luxury, unique and original chocolate products. They were all sold in the shape of sphere around twice the size of pearl. Having a professional chef leading its production, Chef Joy Pelo from Melbourne, D’Lanier has an edge over its competitors in terms of quality. They do not use compound chocolate as many other chocolate maker do. Instead, they use couverture chocolate, which is a very high-quality chocolate that contains a higher percentage of cocoa butter, resulting in better and richer taste as well as shinier chocolate surface.
Frankly speaking, I was initially skeptical about the products and could not buy into the notion that it could become the snack that people in Indonesia will get used to. However, after sampling several flavours and ending up purchasing a few containers myself, I would have to retract my preliminary conjecture. I personally like its Mango, Goji Berry & Red Quinoa, Arabica Pearl, Mango as well as Dark Chocolate and Matcha Pearl. They all have their own appeal.
For those of you who are Diabetics that are longing to snack on chocolates or even for autistic kids who needs low glycemic index diet, you can choose the Dark Chocolate 82% with Naturally Sweetened from Stevia. Quite thoughtful huh? All their products do not contain any coloring, preservatives, and they only use natural flavouring. They also use high quality ingredients such as imported nuts or even imported matcha straight from Japan! The main ingredients which is the raw chocolate itself is produced locally from selected local farmers.
Besides selling their chocolate collections, they also offer snack collections at their outlets. They have Dried Fruits, Granola and Mixed Nuts, that are sold in several flavour selections.
If you are into chocolate drinks, you can try their Hot Chocolate, which comes highly recommended and their refreshing Iced Chocolate as well. They added some crunchy chocolate bits into the drink to make it more interesting.
After reviewing D’Lanier products quite comprehensively, I have to applaud its originality and its emphasis to quality that have made their chocolate products a level above the rest.
Paris Van Java Mall – Bandung
Paskal 23 Mall – Bandung
Sun Plaza – Medan
I’ve been hearing about Kilo restaurants, but haven’t got the chance to visit any of them until now. Kilo Jakarta is the latest member of Series of Intentions (SOI) group, the same group behind the many Kilo restaurants, clubs and lounges that spread in Bali and Singapore.
Kilo Jakarta has the elements that I prefer most in restaurant interior: soothing ambience, simple but cozy seatings, with dim romantic lighting. Lunch and Dinner menu are different, but the food’s mostly Japanese Italian fusion. I came here on lunch time, so here’s what I had that day:
Truffled Tai Yuzu Roll (IDR 130.000): Fresh crab meat, snapper, tempura flakes. This sushi has the perfect texture and flavor, deep Truffle fragrant, nice balance between the rice and the crab meat stuffing. Beautiful and delicious.
Based on my years of culinary hopping in Jakarta, I feel that the only thing that Jakarta lacks of is an outdoor cafe with laid back island vibe. So, in mid February, immediately after I got the wind of such a cafe, I tried to visit the place using google as my guide. However, it turned out that the direction from google at the time did not help me much in finding the place. Pointing to taman ria senayan did not give us much head up as well, as the place was undergoing major construction. Finally, after a few wrong turns and circle, I reached the location and it was at the same spot as Pulau Dua restaurant.
Would you agree if I say that the entrance reminds me of our beautiful island of Bali?
Passing through the curtains, we got into an area that made you feel you are not in the metropolitan city anymore. All the white interiors as well as the little details there supports an outdoor island vibe that is truly instagenic.
The best time to visit would be in the afternoon after 3pm as the heat would have subsided a bit. At the time of my visit, it was flocked with visitor looking to get a shot of themselves in this photogenic venue as there are quite a few great spots to take picture.
Here we ordered Sweet Potato Rounds and Coconut Water to munch and drink. We definitely made a great choice on the food and drink. The sweet potato rounds are crunchy and yummy, while the coconut was refreshing.
Kokonut & Curtains’ refreshing take on delivering an escape from the busy and hectic life of Jakarta undoubtedly pays off. As more and more people learn about what they have to offer, I believe it will become more crowded.
Walking down Haji lane on my last Singapore visit, we decided to head on for brunch at a coffee shop nearby within 7-8 minutes walk. This is the first time I heard of Tolido’s Espresso Nook, but I already got a good feeling about it.
As I got there, this small and simple coffee den with rustic vibes was already packed with visitors. We have to put our name on a waiting list to get seats either inside with approximately around 20-24 seating capacity or outside with additional 12 seatings.
The vibrant vibes here added with strong smell of coffee created excitement and feelings of contentment for me. I quickly ordered a cup of cappuccino and some of their brunch menu such as their egg dishes served with potatoes, toasts and salad, as well as their signature pandan pancake with coconut ice cream on top drizzled with gula malaka.
The whole experience is satisfactory. And as I left the premises, I started to ponder on a question, is it whether good crowds bring about the vibes or is it the other way around good vibes bring about packs of crowds to this humble yet happening coffee spot.
Looking for a fun restaurant with a delicious meal is like finding a needle in a haystack these days. Especially in Pantai Indah Kapuk area, where most of the insta worthy ones are too gimmicky (in my personal opinion of course). So when my friend took me to this new Thai restaurant, I must confess that the first thing I do was that I cringed on the sight of pretty neon lights and cute stacks photo worthy drink holders. It’s not that I’m against those things, in fact I am a sucker for party decorations. It’s just that I’ve had my share of bad experience with “loud” eateries.
SanThai has a tremendous narcissist magnet as an interior. Which is a good thing. The place isn’t that big (with the second floor still in renovation phase), but so bright and colorful, you can’t help to take pictures everywhere. The Thai menu is wide in range, mixed with authentic and fusion dishes.
Let’s start with the feasting:
Asian Corn Salad (IDR 45.000): Corn, Salted egg with sweet and sour dressing. Looks simple but the strong flavor was delicious.
Asian Corn Salad
Thai Pomelo Salad (IDR 48.000): Fragrant and bold in taste.
Thai Pomelo Salad
Prawn and Chicken Spring Rolls (IDR 55.000): The spring roll skin was just so so, but the filling was full and tasty.
Prawn and Chicken Spring Rolls
Special Curry Fish (IDR 175.000): Fresh Snapper fish head, thick savory and deep flavored curry sauce.
Special Curry Fish
Bangkok Beef (IDR 125.000): The beef was pretty good but a little to greasy.
Legend Curry Calamari (IDR 90.000): The yellow curry resembled Singaporean curry that’s more sweet than salty. I personally like this, but the taste could be bland compare to the others.
Kakigori Thai Tea (IDR 75.000): I believe this is supposed to be a Japanese dessert, but with the pretty presentation and wonderful flavor of real Thai ice tea, I’m not complaining.
Kakigori Thai tea
Kakigori Thai tea
Thai Ice Mixed (IDR 35.000): Sweet corn, coconut, jackfruit, Arenga Palm Fruit / Kolang Kaling in Coconut Milk. This one was average.
Thai Ice Mixed
Huge range of menu and Dessert, good service, photo spot in every corner, that’s how I’d describe Santhai. But the most important thing is that the food was great and made the whole thing complete. I’d definitely come back for some more.
Ruko Garden House
Blok B No. 18B
Jl. Pantai Indah Kapuk
When you’re a pastry and bread lover like me, you’d know the excitement of visiting a brand new bakery/coffee place like I’m experiencing. Joe & Dough Plaza Indonesia just opened. The place isn’t that big but pretty much used up all their available corners for seating area. I like the clean, modern look here. Very minimalist yet comfy at the same time. Their weren’t kidding about their pastry display either. On one side is the bread and pastry, on the other side is the cake collection. I was drooling before I even get to my table.
Emping Nachos (IDR 55.000): This one caught my eye immediately. It’s a combination of all the nachos ingredients but the chips. Instead of tortilla chips, they use Emping Chips instead. I might sound absurd, but the flavor was surprisingly works. The bitter chips works well with the toppings.
Truffle Mushroom Quiche
Truffle Mushroom Quiche (IDR 58.000): Thin square shaped Quiche with the strong flavor of truffle and mushroom topping. I’d like it even more if they reheated it.
Rendang Coney Dog
Rendang Coney Dog
Rendang Coney Dog (IDR 120.000): Gourmet chicken bratwurst with Rendang beef boloignaise, sweet relish, cheese, onions and brioche roll. I like taste but wished there were stronger Rendang flavor.
24 Hr Slow Cooked Short Rib Bowl
24 Hours Slow-Cooked Short Rib Bowl (IDR 165.000): Grain fed beef short ribs with tomato confit, fried garlic, pickled cucumber on vinegared Sasanishiki rice. Very good tender aand flavorful red meat.Love the side dishes too.
Dessert & Pastry:
PB & J Cruffin (IDR 33.000): FYI Cruffin is a Croissant Muffin hybrid. This one looks pretty, the texture was denser than a croissant. There’s jelly on the inside and peanut butter on the top. Pretty good.
Sesame Butterscotch Cake
Sesame Butterscotch (IDR 60.000): Light sesame cake with butterscotch cream. Very addicting if I might say so.
My visit to Joe & Dough was delightful. I love their food and pastry. The service could use some more training, but I’ll definetely come back for more.
Joe & Dough
Plaza Indonesia 2nd Flr
Jl. MH Thamrin