Venue

  • 13/09/2018 - Devishanty 0 Comments
    The Evolution of Turning Point Coffee

    In our May’s issue about coffee, BSD, Tangerang was often mentioned as one of the fastest growing region for coffee shop business. However, when Angeline Lauwrence and Joseph Erwin started Turning Point Coffee in 2014, it was the pioneer of coffee shop in the region. “Our initial concept is neighborhood café that aim for local residents. We want to be a part of residents’ activities so we can create our own community, unlike coffee shops in malls that are visited occasionally,” said Angeline.


    From Melbourne to Tangerang

    The story of Turning Point Coffee began when Angeline and Joseph were living in Melbourne, Australia for 10 years. After graduated, Angeline worked in financial planning, while Joseph was in IT. In 2012, Angeline decided to make a turn in her career by becoming a full time barista and worked in some local coffee shops, the last one was Market Lane Coffee.


    “Actually, office life in Melbourne is very nice, (economically) very stable. But, we wanted to build our own business in Indonesia, the one that not only profitable for us, personally, but also to give positive impacts to broader audience,” she explained. After knowing about the promising coffee shop business opportunity in Indonesia, finally on 2014 the couple returned to their homeland to establish Turning Point Coffee in BSD, Tangerang.

    Of course, adopting the coffee habit from Melbourne to Tangerang does not happen overnight. “In Melbourne, coffee is necessity. A person may visit a coffee shop 2-3 times a day, and the local coffee shops can, at least, sell 200 cups of coffee per day, that’s the absolute minimum number. Meanwhile, in here, if you can reach 200 cups, it’s already wonderful. We’re talking about coffee here, not including any other drinks,” said Angeline.

    “In the beginning, our outlet is not too big, only consist of 1 floor, we didn’t even have wifi, nor main course. At the time, our resources are very limited, we didn’t have proper kitchen, we didn’t even know how to run one. As time goes by, we evolve. After moving to a new location in the beginning of 2018, we have bigger outlet and we can serve various main course,” she said.

    In the new outlet that’s located still in the same business complex, Turning Point Coffee has become more artistic (and of course, Instagrammable), thanks to their new partner, Antony Liu, owner of Studio Tonton which was actually run the architecture business. It’s no wonder to know that the 3rd floor of Turning Point Coffee is used as gallery for Antony’s crafts.


    Core Identity

    To be able to exist for 4 years in the middle of coffee shops’ fierce competition is not an easy task. Turning Point Coffee did it by maintaining its brand’s identity through their product selections. The place’s house blend is a mix of 60% Brazil Rainha bean and 40% Dolok Sanggul, Sumatera. “Personally, I love coffee with acidity, sweetness, and a bit of bitterness with medium body. Once, we switched the bean, but in the end, the customer always prefer to our initial house blend, that’s the one they love,” she explained.

    In Turning Point Coffee (and in every coffee shop, actually) to tell the taste preference of the place, it’s best to go with espresso. We ordered their double ristretto that has flavor profile that perfectly match Angeline’s description, plus a very pleasant sweet after taste. It doesn’t take genius to tell that they serve specialty coffee here. Or, if you’re a milk-based type person, have a Magic, basically, a flat white with double ristretto for more pronounced coffee flavor. Prawn Aglio Olio and Cinnamon Bread Puddingis some of the most favorite menus to accompany your coffee experience here. But, they don’t serve the typical Fried Rice nor Oxtail Soup here.

    There are numerous ideas form friends and families that the couple reject, solely to keep the identity and concept of Turning Point Coffee. “I don’t enjoy selling something I don’t really like, such as the regular Ice Lychee Tea, Green Tea Latte, Red Velvet Latte, or Taro Latte. Whenever possible, the products that we sell are the natural homemade products, such as Pandan Latte or Earl Grey Latte. Now that we have bigger place and wider range of food, we try not to loose our initial identity,” Angeline added.


    The New Roastery

    After moving to a new place, the next phase for Turning Point Coffee would be to open a new business in coffee roaster. Of course, the business expansion is not without proper calculation. They might only have 1 outlet, Angeline and Joseph are also involved in Titik Temu Coffee in Seminyak, Bali. The coffee shop is a business with many partners involved in it. Even though the couple is only responsible in running the beverage business in Titik Temu Coffee, we can safely say that they already have their second outlet.


    “I’ve talked to many people, and to sum it up, having your own roaster started to make sense when you already have 2-3 outlets. I question new guys in the coffee shop business who already wanting their own roaster for the sake of saving cost, because the investation is very costly, it’s like (the cost of) building a new coffee shop. It’s a small step toward our long journey in controlling the whole supply chain to the coffee farm,” she concluded.

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  • 13/09/2018 - Billianto Bagus 0 Comments
    Fine Flavor and Fabulous View

    As integral part of Sthala, a Tribute Portfolio Hotel, Sungai Restaurant offers a completely memorable dining experience in the midst of Ubud’s tranquil serenity. From the open-air venue, you can gaze upon the scenic panorama of undulating trees swaying gently, accompanied by the trickling sound of the flowing river below. 


    Start your feast with a portion of Pomelo “Jeruk Bali” and Strawberry Salad. This fresh appetizer with indigenous influence is completed with soya bean cake, sweet potato chips and tamarind dressing, creating a distinctive tasty flavor you wouldn’t find on conventional salad anywhere. The sweet potato chip is actually a brilliant addition that wraps up the whole dish into one fine appetite booster. Then for the main menu, you should try their signature Satay Campur Sthala; assorted selection of Indonesian skewered grilled goodness consisting beef, pork, shrimp, chicken to minced seafood satay, served in a small griller with tender ‘lontong’ rice cake on side. Or, for a more ‘Ubud’ feel, you may opt for Bebek Sthala; a portion of crispy fried half local duck presented with unique ‘Gonda’ vegetables tossed in sambal, steamed rice and peanut crackers. To finish your session in complete satisfaction, Warm Flourless Chocolate Cake is a must-try; apple caramel, chocolate tuile and vanilla ice cream served hot to add some sweetness to your palate.

    A good meal has to be complimented with fine drinks. So, at Sungai you can also order some of their refreshment creations such as Mexican Berry; a unique tequila-based cocktail with mixed berries and a brief touch of lemonade or the cheekily named L.O.L, which stands for Lemon, Orange, Lychee, mixed with soda and (also) a hint of lemonade.

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  • 12/09/2018 - Rian Farisa 0 Comments
    C’s Steak and Seafood Restaurant

    In my eighth year as its patron now, the sight and smell of C’s have become a familiar terrain. Upon entering, the open kitchen is where all the attractions are happening. You can smell the fragrant of steaks being seared. You can see huge fish tanks filled with wonders from the sea. You can hear the clashing of the wok and spatula from the Chinese food section. This parade of senses immediately urges me to sit and waiting in anticipation for what will come next on my table.

     

    The warmly lit restaurant evokes a certain degree of intimacy and comfort. While it is not a fine-dining restaurant, one would enjoy the hours passed here while devouring all the goodness from the menu. Building up the excitement to eat here, C’s is also inviting foreign chefs from time to time to share their expertise and create a limited time menu.


    The ambiance here is mildly conversational with easy listening music as the background. When you are planning to visit with family or scheduling a meeting with colleagues, then reserving the private rooms overlooking the Bundaran HI would be a major perk for your dining experience.

    C’s has become the backbone for the hotel, especially when Grand Café was undergoing a major renovation in much part of 2018. Of what used to be known as an ala carte restaurant for lunch and dinner, C’s was temporarily converted as an all-day
    dining that caters esteemed guests of Grand Hyatt Jakarta. When Grand Café was finally unveiled several months ago, C’s has returned to its former self again – serving its guests with their much-loved fresh seafood, steak, and Oriental dishes.


    The Executive Sous Chef, Mr Agung Budi went to a length explaining what’s in store at C’s for its patrons. There is a plethora of fresh, quality produce ripe for the taking – especially from the seafood side. Indonesia is now home to many local produce and seafood previously only imported from overseas. Additionally, C’s dedication for farm-to-table concept and sustainability brings good tidings for the environment as well as C’s most discerned diners.


    The chef explains that at least 90% of C’s seafood came from local waters. “We have prawns from Aceh, clams from Bali, and crabs from Papua”, he says. Vegetables are always freshly delivered from a farm in West Java. “Take this burrata salad we have here for example. The beetroots are now grown in Puncak and even the burrata are produced by local cheese artisan”, explains the chef.


    Every restaurant has its own signature dishes. At C’s, the must-have would be the colorful and delectable steak and seafood platters for sharing. Additionally, don’t skip its famous nasi goreng kambing and the wonderful Chinese cuisine lineup.


    From the steak section, a wide range of premium cuts available here are sourced mostly from US and Australia. The star of the show are the platters and the Tomahawk. The seafood platter consists of rock lobster, king prawns, clams, Timika crab, Alaskan king crab, and mussels. Meanwhile, the steak platter has Black Angus beef tenderloin, half baby chicken, lamb chops, and beef sausages. Right on the spotlight, the 1500 gr Tomahawk wagyu steak for sharing with your loved ones.

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  • 12/09/2018 - Devishanty 0 Comments
    The Classic, Fine Dining Steak House

    We have to admit, our first impression when we heard the name of  the place was like, “why does it have such a weird name?” We’re sure we’re not alone in this matter. However, after knowing the story behind it, actually, Ruth’s Chris Steak House has one of the most rock’n roll story in F&B business, and we felt obliged to tell you.


    Behind the Name

    Ruth Fertel, founder of Ruth’s Chris Steak House, was a recently divorced woman with 2 children. She worked as a lab technician in New Orleans, until one of her son dreamed of going to college. With her current salary, his dream was impossible, until he saw an ad of Chris Steak House on sale for $ 18.000 in 1965. Her banker, lawyer, friends and family were against Ruth’s decision, but Ruth dare to mortgage her house for $ 22.000, even though she didn’t have any backgrounds in F&B business, simply because Chris Steak House was established in February 5th 1927, same with her birthday.

    Ruth taught herself to butcher the meat, also to use her knowledge in chemical to build her own patented 982oC broiler. On the first day, she managed to sell 35 pieces of steak worth $5/pcs. Soon, the place became the talk of the town, especially among local politicians and reporters. Within 6 months, Ruth managed to earn twice of her annual salary from her previous workplace, and finally, she was able to send her son to Harvard University.

    The name was changed when the restaurant was burnt down 11 years after opening. One of the condition when Ruth bought the place, was that she wasn’t allowed use the name “Chris Steak House” if she decided to move to other location. In merely 10 days, Ruth built her restaurant in other location and decided to put her name in front of the restaurant’s name, and today, we know it as “Ruth’s Chris Steak House”.

    Until today, Ruth’s Chris Steak House already has more than 150 outlets around the globe. The Indonesian’s outlet is located in Somerset Apartment, just across the Raffles Hotel, South Jakarta, and opened its door for public in February 13th 2016.


    Meat Selection

    Ruth’s Chris Steak House is a family style steak house, wrapped in fine dining’s service, environment, and food quality. Ruth’s Chris never compromises when it comes to quality. The USDA (The United States Department of Agriculture) has 3 category for their US beef: Prime, Choice, Select, and another 2 grades below them were Cutter and Canner. Ruth’s Chris Steak House always uses Prime which has more marbling and feature younger beef that resulted in finer texture and lighter
    red color.

    Ruth’s Chris Steak House also use their trademark, patented broiler, found by Ruth Fertel. The broiler’s internal temperature may reach 982oC, and it resulted in juicier flavor, more tender texture, also maintain the shape of the meat that can’t be attained by any other grilling methods.

    One thing to note, never touch the steak’s serving plate as its temperature may reach 260oC to get that sizzling sensation on plate. The hot plate has 2 main functions: to keep the steak warm longer, and also help you to cook the meat, especially helpful for those who dislike rare meat. With the featured hot plate, you are recommended to order your steak one level below your favorite doneness level.


    American Portion

    As an American restaurant, of course Ruth’s Chris Steak House is offering American portion food (read: tremendous). In addition, what sets the place apart from other steak houses is the family style sharing concept. In other places, you will have individual plate with side dish and sauce, but here, if you order steak, you’ll get big steak, salt, pepper, and melted butter, without any side dish or any other sauce. They believe, it’s the best way to enjoy premium beef cuts. Of course, Ruth’s Chris Steak House also offers regular side dish such as potato, vegetable, to dessert, all served in “American” portion, so you can share them with friends and families.

    As a restaurant that originated from New Orleans, it’s not possible to enjoy steak without seafood that became the trademark of the region. Some of the favorite seafood menus here are Sizzlin’ Jumbo Scallops, Sizzlin’ Blue Crab Cakes, Barbecued Shrimp, Ahi-Tuna Stack, and Fresh Lobster.

    You might be surprised when you see the price list on the menu, however, after seeing what you’ll have, everything started to make sense. If you are to visit the place, we recommend you to come with 4 people minimum (unless, for romantic dinner), because in the end, you’ll spend less money than what you usually spend in other equivalent steak house.

    Ruth’s Chris Steak House is not any ordinary restaurant. You can see it as part of history created by the struggle and strong will of a single mom, but you can also see it as a place to satisfy your carnivorous lust in fine dining setting. One of their most memorable quote for us is: it took a tough lady to make tender steak.

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  • 12/09/2018 - Devishanty 0 Comments
    [ID] - South American Style

    Dengan begitu banyak pilihan restoran baru, agak sulit untuk menentukan kualitas sebuah restoran. Namun mari kita sederhanakan saja, jika Anda tidak keberatan untuk kembali, berarti itu adalah restoran yang lumayan, namun jika itu adalah sebuah restoran yang bagus, Anda akan selalu ingin kembali lagi. Inilah sensasi yang kami rasakan ketika kami makan di El Asador beberapa bulan lalu, kali ini kami memutuskan untuk menggali lebih dalam mengenai resto grill bergaya South American ini.


    Eugenio Doldan, pria Uruguay dibelakang El Asador ini menghabiskan 9 tahun bekerja di restoran Argentina di Melbourne, Australia. Di sana, ia bertemu dengan seorang gadis Indonesia, Dhani Isti Tantyo, yang menjadi istrinya. Setelah menyelesaikan studinya, Isti kembali ke Indonesia dan Eugenio memutuskan untuk datang ke Jakarta untuk membuka bisnis mereka bersama. Pasangan ini membuka El Asador (artinya “barbecuer”) pada 2013, kemudian El Machote dan Black Sheep di 2017.

    “Awalnya agak sulit, karena kami kesulitan mencari produk (daging) dan supplier. Ketika Anda seorang pemain baru, orang tidak terlalu percaya pada Anda. Saya pernah memesan 5 jenis potongan daging sebanyak 50 kg dari sebuah supplier, dan mereka hanya datang dengan 20-30 kg. Namun, seperti bayi yang belajar jalan, kami mulai mengenal supplier lain dan sekarang kami memiliki kredibilitas yang baik. Mereka juga tahu jika mereka tidak mengirim produk yang saya inginkan, atau kualitasnya tidak sesuai standar kami, saya akan mengembalikannya,” kata Eugenio.

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  • 12/09/2018 - Devishanty 0 Comments
    South American Style

    With so many choices of flavor from the new restaurants nowadays, it’s kind of difficult to use standards to tell whether a restaurant is good or bad. To make it simple for you, it’s a decent restaurant when you don’t mind to return there, however, if it’s a good one, you’re craving to come back for more. It’s the sensation we had when we dined in El Asador few months ago, and now we decided to learn more about the South American style grill restaurant.


    Meet Eugenio Doldan, an Uruguay man behind El Asador, who spent 9 years working in Argentinian restaurant in Melbourne, Australia. There, he met his Indonesian girlfriend, Dhani Isti Tantyo, who then became his wife. After she finished the study and returned to Indonesia, Eugenio decided to came to Jakarta to open a business together with her. The couple opened El Asador (literally means “the barbecuer”) in 2013, then El Machote and Black Sheep in 2017.


    “In the beginning it was tough because it was difficult to find the products (meat) and the suppliers. When you are new, people don’t trust you too much. I ordered 5 different cuts weighed 50 kg from a supplier, and they came up with only 20-30 kgs. But, like a baby learning to walk, we began to know more suppliers and now we have quite good credibility among them. They also know that if they don’t send me what I want, or the quality is not good, I’ll send them back,” said Eugenio.

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  • 10/08/2018 - Devishanty 0 Comments
    The Perfect Coffee Shop?

    It was in the middle of 2015 when I heard the buzz about a trending coffee shop in Pluit that offered premium quality (and price, of course) coffee. However, as an employee with regular working hour, it’s a bit difficult to find the time to visit Ombe Kofie as it was closed on 6.00 pm. 


    When I finally had the chance to go there, I was quite surprised because of 2 things. The first one, was the price. Compared to most coffee shops at the time, Ombe’s coffee is quite pricey. Regular cappuccino was around Rp 45.000-50.000, filter V60 was Rp 65.000, and Panama Geisha was Rp 150.000 for a single cup. Then the second one, in only 30 m2 outlet, I saw almost all of the customers talking to each other. “It must be a private event for some sort of office,” I assumed. Later, I found out that it’s just another daily scenario at Ombe Kofie, like a hip version of kopi tiam. The one who’s responsible for the lively scene is definitely the Godfather of Ombe Kofie, Jason Leo, but most people simply call him “Om Jason”, one of the liveliest silver-haired man I’ve ever met.


    Long Research

    Actually, the idea of opening a coffee shop came from Om Jason’s wife, Tante Wiwid, an avid coffee lover. “Actually, I didn’t really like coffee because it kept me awake, I also don’t like bitterness. If I were to drink a Starbucks coffee, usually I put 6 packs of sugar,” said Om Jason.

    In 2011, when the couple took their son for college in San Jose, US, Om Jason and wife also visited San Fransisco and Los Angeles. “There’s so many coffee shops, especially in San Fransisco. My wife said that the coffee shop was also trending in Indonesia. When my father passed away in 2012, I began serious research on coffee shop,” he recalled.

    At the time, they went café hopping to almost all coffee shops in Jakarta, from Giyanti One Fifteenth, Crematology, Tanamera, and Anomali to learn everything about coffee. “We’re dead serious on the research. Finally on March 2014, I took 2 days barista course with Aji Darius in Hang Tuah. Since then, I made my own manual brew coffee, because I hadn’t got an espresso machine. Of course, my wife became my object of experiment,” he laughed.

    In July 2014, they started to get serious in finding location for their future coffee shop from Senopati to Ampera, before finally landed the decision on 12m2 spot beside Putri Pharmacy in Pluit, which actually just 1 km from Om Jason’s house. After expanding the building into 30m2, Ombe Kofie was officially operating in March 2015. It was slow for the first 2 weeks, but after that, Om Jason and his partner were restless because of the customers who are even willing to stand up because they didn’t get any seats. It happened everyday until the end of 2016.


    People of Ombe

    There are some contributing factors to Ombe’s success. “Perhaps it was word of mouth. When we were café hopping and said we’d be opening our own coffee shop using La Marzocco Strada, but the barista was already old (laugh), perhaps the coffee people started to talk about it. The second factor was the role of social media, especially Instagram,” Om Jason explained.

    However, the one thing that can’t be replicated by any other coffee shop is Om Jason’s ability to build relationship with various communities, from bike, runner, car, to motorcycle communities. “From the beginning, I wanted to make a relaxed coffee shop, intimate where we can talk, scream, and know the customers, because it’s our coffee culture. Strangers became friends, so we have more and more friends. We also quick to know customer, we won’t forget if you’ve been here 2-3 times, we’ll remember your name and your order. We even have a Whatsapp group called People of Ombe,” he said.


    Even though Ombe is closed down at night, the place is always filled with customers from morning to afternoon. “Basically, if there’s other coffee shop opens at 7, I’ll open at 6, I want to be the earliest. In Pluit, most of our customers are business owners or top level management who aren’t bound to regular working hours. You’ll see some customers came in the morning, and they’d return in the afternoon,” said Om Jason.


    Hi End Segment

    Since inception, Om Jason deliberately aim for the hi end market with less competitors. “The price of a cup of coffee is around Rp 30.000-35.000, meanwhile there are only 1-3 coffee shops which offer coffee above the price range. I prefer to fight in the premium class compared to fighting in the saturated market, there are more opportunities Of course, in middle or premium segment, you have to offer quality, but if I sell it in premium price, from the ingredients, I can provide better quality coffee bean, so if there’s a mistake, it won’t be as fatal,” he explained.

    It’s the reason why Ombe is widely known as imported bean provider, especially from Africa and South America, in fact, 80% of Ombe’s sales come from imported bean. “I don’t mean to brag, but in the beginning, Ombe is known for providing Panama Geisha Esmeralda (Rp 150.000/cup), which cost you Rp 4.000.000/kg of roasted bean. Perhaps in Indonesia, we sold most Panama Geisha, we managed to sell around 1 kg/month,” he said.

    Ombe required around a year to change the coffee habit from sugared coffee to black coffee, from flat white to piccolo or double shot espresso. “From 10 people, perhaps only 1 can naturally detect the notes in the coffee. If someone ask me, ‘Om, what are the notes of this Flores bean?’ Is it blueberry? Black currant? Mango? I don’t know, but I know good coffee after I dialed it, that’s the most important thing!” he stated.


    Expansion

    Until today, Ombe already has 6 outlets in Jakarta, from Djule Kofi in Melawai (already closed down), Maarkeeze in Grand Indonesia, Ombe Mal Kelapa Gading, Ombe Summarecon Bekasi, Ombe UOB Plaza (exclusive for UOB staffs) and the last one, Ombe Cikajang. We can safely say that Ombe is one of the most aggressive third wave coffee brand to expand, even though Om Jason admitted that he never have the the intention of finding new place. “It (expansion) happened after someone offer their places to us, if I have the feeling and offered a good deal, I’d take it!” he said.

    Om Jason has his own considerations in choosing a location. “We already know (the ideal composition) of fixed cost, COGS, rental, salary, etc, that’s all we need to know, if one of them is off, we’ll find out the reason, simple. Perhaps the offered location is slow, but I wouldn’t mind as long as the deal is good and I have ‘the feeling’, because Ombe already has its own market. From the beginning, we even have people from South Jakarta coming all the way here. If we got the deal that we can’t refuse, off we go! One of the good deal is in Ombe Kelapa Gading, where we have our own entrance from outside, it’s a great deal, isn’t it?” he laughed.

    If there are some people who think that coffee business is already saturated, Om Jason thinks the other way. According to him, the industry still has immense opportunities. “Did you know that the sales of sachet coffee is ridiculously big? Can those people afford to buy Rp 20.000-25.000 coffee? Definitely, but perhaps occasionally. One day they will have these kinds of coffee and they will know the taste, brewing method, and the proper way to consume coffee. It’s a bit hassle actually, but do you want to drink good or coffee, or any coffee will do? This (habit) should be improved, and actually many are willing to switch," he said.

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  • 10/08/2018 - Billianto Bagus 0 Comments
    Exquisite Creation for Divine Celebrations

    Grew out of passion, dedication and extensive experience of Indonesian and European cuisine from the founders; husband-and-wife Helmut and Julia, Ixora Cake seems to be on the go-to list of many national celebrities, public figures and couples who want to make the best sweet treat for their wedding celebration. The brand has been known to create astonishing custom-cake by request, with bold approach in using various ingredients and creating a delicious taste that matches the look.


    In fact, one of the thing that makes Ixora Cake stands out amongst its competitors is their willingness to explore the ingredients; not just the filling, but on the cake itself. Instead of only two (plain chocolate or vanilla), they currently have extensive list of 18 cake flavors; including red velvet, raspberry, almond, carrot, caramel, lemon, vanilla and chocolate mud just to name a few. All of these are highly customizable with different variety of filling, so the client can create their original cake with a combination that never been used before. I get the chance to taste the flavors mentioned above during my visit to Ixora’s café, which is actually a part of Delicioso Bistro & Restaurant, and yes I was impressed with the full-bodied flavor, not too sweet but creamy and delicious.

    Not only the taste, Ixora Cake known for its exquisite shape as well. Every custom cake is wonderfully made to resemble the client’s imagination and request. This especially applies to the Birthday Cake. Ixora seems able to create many kinds of artistic and realistic forms available, from the famous Game of Throne’s ‘Iron Throne’ rendition to the most favorite ‘Beer Bintang Bucket’. They also excel
    in re-creating the surrealist marble pattern on the cake. Lead by the talented Chef Andre, Ixora’s pastry kitchen is divided into different division; mainly baking, filling, covering and decorating, each with its own sub-division. This is what makes them can finish such a fine-looking artisanal-grade cake in just 24 hour or less.

    Now, 17 years later from their modest start, Ixora is proud to be one of industry leader in Bali. They will continue creating expert pastries for wholesale and retail clientele alike, or anyone who needs a perfectly-shaped tasty cake for their once-in-a-lifetime occasion.

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  • 03/08/2018 - Rian Farisa 0 Comments
    UNION Café

    Known for the endless innovations when it comes to various dining concepts, UNION Café in a way differentiates it self with the siblings. Emulating the success of UNION as the group’s flagship restaurant is already a challenge, but to leave its own mark of distinction to curious Jakartan diners would be an admirable feat.


    Within just few weeks of their opening since before Eid this year, the establishment has already become the talk of the town. The welcomingatmosphere, the circular shape of the café, and the alluring display of bakerywould entice even UNION’s most seasoned patron. Once inside, it’s all aboutcomfort and privacy - albeit pretty much the whole Senayan City can see thehustle and bustle of the café.

    The distinctive features came mostly from the menu and perhaps this is the first time in the history of UNION that we have Indonesian-inspired dishes more than ever. The inspirations for the menu was either creatively driven or derived from personal experiences of chef proprietor Adhika Maxi and his wife Karen Carlotta. The result is an exciting lineup worth every penny to indulge.


    From the starters, UNION Café boasts the collection of Indonesian snacks such as the prawn and chicken tahu isi with daun jeruk, singkong fries “soto flavor”, scallop bakwan jagung, and bakwan fishcakes. Alternatively, you can choose international flavors such as the lemongrass tuna tataki with tempeh crumbs or the calamari with San Marzano tomatoes and tartar sauce.


    Heading to the pasta section, the Indonesian flavors can be seen right away from the appearance of crispy teri aglio olio spaghetti and the crispy chicken penne with sambal matah. The latter shows UNION Café’s new commitment for bolder taste. It’s not just about the depth of flavors and the sophistication of the dish, but also the level of spiciness. This would be a new height that perhaps only a few internationally-themed restaurants in Jakarta would be brave enough to climb.


    Heading to the main course, one certainly must play along with UNION Café’s signatures. For example; the Indo Spiced Steak with cabe rawit confit, colorful vegetables, and rice would be a great substitute for your usual Steak Frites. Other than that, the café offers the appetizing nasi bebek garing on garlic rice and served with 2 kinds of sambal. Not stopping on those, we have all the goodness from slow cooked short ribs with tamarind sauce, nasi goreng kepiting, and seafood mie goreng.


    Heading straight to the desserts - a specialty that has contributed so much for UNION’s success, is also not short of surprises. Firstly, we have the es teler ice cream bolu roll, and pisang coklat with cinnamon sugar and burnt caramel ice cream. The rich display of cakes and pastry would be great for takeaways as well.


    With this, one would be curious enough to see with what UNION Café in particular, would conjure again in the future with its potentials. As they say, UNION made is well made, and certainly we’d be looking forward to more exciting things coming from the group and its other ventures.

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  • 05/07/2018 0 Comments
    An Enchanting Romance and Wedding Celebration in the heart of Island of Bali

    Sthala, a Tribute Portfolio Hotel, Ubud Bali, a member of Marriott International is one of the Bali’s most enchanting and romantic venues for weddings, events, ceremonies and honeymoons.


    romantic sanctuary amidst lush tropical gardens,  breathtaking views of the WOS river and Balinese temple, Sthala Ubud Bali offers a remarkable location for couples to celebrate their wedding and honeymoon or spend quality time together. The Hotel offers the ultimate privacy, serenity and tranquility blends of nature meeting luxury. We can offer a romantic chapel settings for your wedding with a dramatic WOS river view or lush manicured gardens at Abing Terrace, or an event with the river view and Balinese Temple on the river deck.


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  • Ideas Awesome is one of the coffee shop competing in one of the most talked about region in coffee communities, Kelapa Gading
    05/07/2018 - Devishanty 0 Comments
    The Coffee Shop’s Battleground

    After Passion discussed about coffee in the last May 2018 issue, the name Kelapa Gading is often mentioned by our sources as the region with the highest growth of coffee shop in Jakarta, perhaps in Indonesia. On the 1.633 ha land, thereare more than 70 coffee shops operating with their own unique selling proposition, one of them is Ideas Awesome.


    The trend of thir wave coffee shop in Kelapa Gading began with 2 coffee shops: Six Ounces and Kopium in 2015. “Based on the latest info I had last month, the number has reached 70. Perhaps there are some that has closed down, but we also have the upcoming new ones also, so I assume we have more than 70 now,” said Paul Mordheweyk, the owner of Ideas Awesome. The coffee shop has been operating since 2017, “It was a bit crowded at that time, but there were still only around 40 coffee shops, ini 2017-2018, we have so many new coffee shops,” he added.

    Paul is not exactly a new face in coffee scene. Previously, he worked as Sales Manager in Tanamera, one of the third wave pioneers in Jakarta. In 2015, he built his own coffee shop in Rawa Belong, West Jakarta, under the name Coteca (Coffee Tea Cacao). His main consideration of opening a coffee shop in Kelapa Gading? “Simple, I want to have my own business, close to where I live,” said Paul who live near Kelapa Gading.
     

    Even though it was located not too far from the main street in Kelapa Gading, Paul has deliberately chosen the location in Rukan Graha Bulevard since long ago because it reminds him of Tanamera’s atmosphere in Thamrin City Office Park. “It’s a bit in the inside, it has office atmosphere but a bit far from the crowded street. Perhaps it’s the only place in Kelapa Gading with similar atmosphere with Tanamera, even though the traffic is not as busy, they got Grand Indonesia, Plaza Indonesia and Thamrin Office over there,” he explained.

    One of the biggest challenges faced by most coffee shops in Kelapa Gading is the construction of LRT that has to be finished before 2018’s Asean Games. “Of course, it’s a challenge for us, we have to, some sort of holding our breath. There are other coffee shops in Kelapa Gading who had worse situation, they didn’t even manage to sell a single item for a day. If you say that our location is not ideal, let just count how many coffee shops were closing down even though they’re located at the main street? So, location is not a guarantee,” he added.

    However, as the construction will end soon, Ideas Awesome found a new optimism as it is located very closely to the LRT station. Ideas Awesome even doesn’t hesitate to prolong their contract for 3 years even though they haven’t finished the 2 years contract. “Now, I’m thinking of takeaway menus that can be paired with coffee for grab and go concept, because the LRT concept is suitable for those who are always rushing.”


    Trend Following.

    One of the reason why many people open coffee shops in Kelapa Gading (and in any other regions, of course) is because of the trend following. “We have many rich people in Kelapa Gading, perhaps they had their children return from the study abroad and they give capital to build a business. But actually, the demand on coffee is not as big as the rapid growth of the coffee shops,” he added.

    The coffee market in Kelapa Gading can be classified into categories, but according to Paul, they are “coffee lovers” not “freak”, because he deliberately designed his coffee shop to be not too serious about specialty. “I had an acquaintance who opened a coffee shop in Serpong that serves Geisha bean with manual brew, back then, he didn’t even have espresso machine. The customer can order more than 1 cup of coffee, sometimes they even bring their own bean to be brewed. That ’s what I regard as “freak”. In Kelapa Gading, perhaps we have those kinds of customers, but personally, I’ve yet to see one,” said Paul.

    The other trend following can be seen through the choice of espresso machine. Paul was once asked by his customer, who happen to own a coffee shop, on the reason why he didn’t use La Marzocco. “La Marzocco is actually good, but when I asked him back why should I using the machine, what makes it different from other brand? He couldn’t answer. Most people buy a brand because they’re just following their friends. Because when you need to make Iced Caramel Latter, I guess regular espresso machines should be sufficient. Perhaps they buy things because of pride,” he explained.


    Ideas Awesome’s Concept

    From the beginning, Ideas Awesome wasn’t designed for coffee fanatics, because of its location. “I never want to be too specialty because most people in Kelapa Gading prefer sweet taste. And then the coffee people are not that loyal, even though I have to admit, it was caused by us, owners of coffee shop who are opening coffee shops exceeding the actual demand,” he admitted.

    Paul was inspired by the soft ice cream concept when he was travelling to Omotesando Street (Shibuya, Japan). “There was this big coffee shop, also a roaster. However, the customers who got out always bring soft ice cream even though it
    was cold. It’s interesting to bring the concept with tropical climate like Indonesia. Our customers love it, perhaps because we a completely new flavor at the time, Earl Grey.”

    Aside from ice cream, Ideas Awesome also serves unique colorful menus such as Rainbow Pasta, Lego Lemonade (iced drink with colorful lego-shaped ice cube), and Crouching Dragon Hidden Mango. “We exploited grey interior so when you take
    photos of our products, they will pop out,” said Paul. Some of the recommended menus here are Bruschetta con Funghi, and favorite desserts such as Shouffle Pancake and Tiramisu. “ We try to serve something different, even though I have to admit that the concept is not entirely new,” he added.

    In the midst of huge number of coffee shops in Kelapa Gading, uniqueness is the main thing needed for a coffee shop to maintain its existence. With unique menus and Instagrammable place, Ideas Awesome is continuously offering new things for coffee lovers, in addition to their optimism as the construction of LRT in Kelapa Gading is near completion.



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  • 05/07/2018 - Billianto Bagus 0 Comments
    Sweet Creamy Goodness

    As one of Bali’s most prominent pastry brand, Ruth’s Dessert & Diner has re-emerged to the island’s culinary scene once again with new two-story establishment and good ol’ classic American recipe of creamy sweet treat.


    Still located on the main junction of Bypass Sanur road, Ruth’s Dessert & Diner carry along all of their expertise in creating good food-especially pastries and cake, to all of its customers, old and new alike. Their chic little café is a quaint and comfy spot for a full dine-in feast or quality afternoon tea-break.

    Even after years of providing utmost satisfaction for their guest, Ruth’s never ceases to innovate with the menus. All of their pastries are made with real dairy products; no trans-fat or chemical additional whatsoever, ensuring the healthiness and freshness of each dishes.  You should try their ample selections of homemade ice cream, created using 100-years old recipe from Coney Island. The latest addition to this particular menu is Es Krim Goreng Durian; which are basically a fried ice cream with aromatic durian flavor. This used to be one of Indonesia’s most favorite street foods in certain regions; which Ruth nailed perfectly with their own amazing recipe and method. Crispy, deep-fried outer ‘skin’ protecting the creamy (and surprisingly intact) cold sweet treats inside, combining the impossible into one delicious dessert.

    Then, during your visit, don’t forget to try their cupcakes as well. This is widely considered as Ruth’s staple menu which consist a perfect blends of sweet, creamy and tangible cream cheese or butter-based cupcake, baked to perfection with various delicate flavors; from red velvet, chocolate (writer’s personal favorite), carrot cake, and many more. Or for a more ‘American’ feels, try their crispy, crumbly Apple Pie, which serves with a scoop of homemade vanilla ice cream.

    If you want to have ice cream or cake, better have a good one. You don’t want to waste all those calories consuming sub-par sweet treat, and Ruth’s Dessert & Diner will guarantee satisfaction with what they have to offers; a delightful dessert worth feasting for.

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  • 05/07/2018 - Rian Farisa 0 Comments
    A Refined Pâtisserie at its Best

    Passion meets Yoan Tjahjadi and Ivan Setyawan, co-owners of the rising star pastry shop Namelaka at Shophaus Menteng. They share a story about their humble beginnings and how in just less than two years, they are ready to take the pastry world of Jakarta by storm.


    One decade is all that we need to assimilate ourselves within the global culinary culture. It was quiet on all fronts back when I started writing and observing about Jakarta’s food scenes back in 2009. And now, we can see it clearly that everyone is contributing a part to further embolden our local food culture - from a writer and up to restaurant owners, from starting out in a long chain of hospitality industry and up to become an accomplished chef. This also includes the appearance of food start-ups, influencers, and other aspirations.

    Everyone is always inspired with something and that’s the drive needed to gain the foothold in this so-called journey of life. That’s the case for both Yoan and Ivan as well.

    Pastry has always been a thing for Yoan, who started it all from zero. She did it first by learning about cookery in general from a short course in Jakarta, while also at the same time finishing her graphic design study. Meanwhile Ivan was already on his way studying about cookery and accounting. Long story short, they met at William Angliss Institute back in Melbourne - each in pursue of their aspirations within the food industry.

    Graduated, they both returned to Indonesia and promised themselves that they should leave a mark in this world somehow. Namelaka was then established in 2016, starting humbly as an online pastry business and joining food bazaars around Jakarta.

    “One time there was an offer from Shophaus to open up our first store here”, Yoan says. Both were excited about the opportunity, but they realized it was all about renewing their own commitments for the business. A decision that they must face sooner or later.

    Thus, December 2016 was historical for Namelaka as finally Yoan and Ivan agreed to commit themselves wholeheartedly into the business now. The production flow has been set to full motion now and all their resources were assigned to make that happen.

    But what’s the difference between Namelaka and the rest of the competition, I ask them. “Number one, we don’t follow what’s trending out there. Our products are simply based on the flavors that we personally like and we try to be creative with that”, she explains.

    Ivan quickly gives example, “Back when I was in college, I used to really love this hazelnut coffee from Starbucks and that inspired us to create the Coffee Caramel Hazelnut cake”. “Or in my instance”, says Yoan cheerfully, “the Honey Lemon Ginger Tart which was based on a flavored beverage I really like!”

    Their signature product now is the choux pastry with a wide variety of unique flavors such as the Thai milk tea, salted caramel, mango lassi, and many more. Other than that, Namelaka prides itself with their collection of cakes; namely the Intense Chocolate, Earl Berries, and the Noisette. Each boasts its luscious look and a curious blend of quality ingredients.

    Last Ramadan, they paid homage to the holy month with their unique creation of Nastart – a combination of the much loved nastar with homemade pineapple jam, compote, and almond crumble on a pie base. Additionally, they were busy producing the all-time favorite hampers for Eid.

    Business may run well for Namelaka so far, but they do not stay idle. I ask them what they are planning after this. “Rather than focusing on opening new shops, we want to focus on increasing our capacity. We are planning to relocate our central kitchen to a bigger place”, explain them both. They hope to increase their efficiency when responding for more online orders specifically.

    With their current pace and their commitment to quality from this tender age, it’s safe to assume that we will see more of Namelaka from time to time. It would be exciting to see what other creations they will come up with in the future and how the crowd would react to that. As for me, I have found a new sanctuary within the verdant Menteng area. And that is to sip a good old cup of coffee here and a slice of cake from this patisserie.

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  • 05/07/2018 - Devishanty 0 Comments
    [ID] - The Force Behind 5 Star Hotels

    Sebagai mantan seorang Pastry Chef yang telah bekerja di banyak hotel bintang 5, Chef Rahmat Kusnedi (CRK) akhirnya mendirikan sendiri Physalis, pabrik produsen produk pastry ke berbagai hotel bintang 5. Meski dimulai secara sederhana pada 2011 dengan 3 orang staf dan sebuah garasi dari rumah kontrakan, sekarang central kitchen Physalis’s berdiri di lahan seluas 800m2 dengan 80 karyawan tetap yang mampu memproduksi 50.000 pcs cake dan 40.000 pcs roti setiap hari. Tentu proses ini tidak terjadi dalam semalam, CRK menceritakan proses panjang dan pengorbanan yang tidak sedikit dalam membentuk Physalis’s hingga menjadi seperti sekarang ini.

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  • You might not know the name, but Physalis’s has been responsible in supplying pastry products, mostly for 5 star hotels.
    05/07/2018 - Devishanty 0 Comments
    The Force Behind 5 Star Hotels

    As an ex-Pastry Chef who has worked in many 5 star hotels, Chef Rahmat Kusnedi (CRK) built his own brand, Physalis’s, a pastry supplier which supply its products to 5 star hotels. Even though he started humbly in 2011, with only 3 staffs in a house’s garage, now Physalis’s central kithen is standing on 800m2 land with over 80 employees that’s capable of producing 50.000 pcs cake and 40.000 bread per day. Of course it doesn’t happen overnight, CRK tells us the story of the long journey and his big sacrifice in creating Physalis’s as it is now.

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  • Putting all efforts to re-embrace their original concept, Manisan Bali dig deeper to explore the flavor of Indonesian vast archipelago. Now with the new (and prominent) patron chef in their rank, the charming restaurant is ready to serve their best taste of the nation’s rich traditional goodness.
    26/06/2018 - Billianto Bagus 0 Comments
    Deep Taste Explorer

    Putting all efforts to re-embrace their original concept, Manisan Bali dig deeper to explore the flavor of Indonesian vast archipelago. Now with the new (and prominent) patron chef in their rank, the charming restaurant is ready to serve their best taste of the nation’s rich traditional goodness.


    Manisan Bali have one noble mission: (re) introducing Indonesian traditional cuisine to the world, and they gathered the right resources to do so. Currently, they has appointed Chef Bloem as their Patron Chef. This talented and charismatic chef will oversee all menus and ensure that each one of them will carry traditional Indonesian roots, and, of course, are made with only the best quality ingredients. Conveniently (and perfectly) tucked on the side yard of Alaya Ubud, Manisan’s charm will greet you from the parking lot, until you walk down on a wooden deck in-between the glowing green paddy field to reach its main dining space.

    I feel honored to be accompanied by the man himself, Chef Bloem, during my visit, enjoying the eloquent taste of his creation one plate after another. The first one that really captured my palate is called Cumi. Literally translated to ‘squid’, it consists a plate of baby squid soaked black with squid ink. I thought it would be overdone, but I couldn’t be more wrong. There is no fishy taste nor smell whatsoever, and there was this fine balance between salty and creamy flavor that is so pleasantly good it made me longs for more. Then for meat lovers, you have to try the Babi Kecap. A run-off-the-mill Chinese-influenced menu which obviously made by someone with talent and knowledge. The succulent, juicy braised pork blended so well with sweet soy sauce. I highly recommended Manisan take of this Indonesian classic, especially for those who are looking for its quality version. Another highlight of the day came in form of Nasi Bira; a portion of rice with variety of condiments and dishes, served Balinese-Royal style. I was told that this meal was considered sacred and eaten only as a part of Saraswati ceremony, celebrating the knowledge that has been given to human by gods. It consist yellow rice with six tasty traditional dishes; from tuna, betutu, sate lilit, to kakul (freshwater snail).

    Since I was exploring quite various arrays of meticulous dishes, there was no way for me to order just a plain water or ice tea to accompany my journey. So I opted to order a glass of Nyuh Gading; a rejuvenating drink made of coco nectar, pineapple, grenadine and homemade coconut syrup which comes in pleasantly vibrant blends of yellow with red-tint color.

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  • 26/06/2018 - Billianto Bagus 0 Comments
    Celebrating Archipelago’s Diversity

    Situated within the dreamy precinct of Alila Villa Uluwatu Resort, The Warung might bears a modest name (pretty much means ‘small hut’ in Indonesian), but it will treat each of its guest with a completely elevated dining experience, both literally and figuratively.


    The eclectic open-air dining venue is perfectly perched overlooking the magnificent Ocean, warmly welcoming their guest with immaculate visual spectacle that fully embrace the island’s ultimate tropical wonder. Long wooden-carved table is placed on the middle side of the restaurant, just fronting elegant open-kitchen, surrounded by smaller units of table-and-chair to ensure the convenience of each guests.

    Culinary speaking, The Warung explores the diverse selections of traditional cuisine from all across Indonesia’s archipelago. During my visit, I was offered a certain set of menus, but what comes first was a pleasant surprise that’s not even on the said list; Sambal Congklak. It basically an appetizer consists hefty selections of sambal (chili sauce), 12 to be precise, served along two variants of kerupuk (crackers). I was then told that this is one of The Warung’s signature dish for every guest to nibble before they enjoy the main courses. I enjoyed every sambal variant so much, dipping them with the kerupuk crackers as well as get another reminder of how much variety Indonesian food have, even only the sambal.

    Then off to the main menu, first, I was treated with Ayam Betutu; a Balinese traditional goodness which consist of steamed whole chicken in rich ‘betutu’ spice made of shallots, turmeric, ginger, galangal, peanuts, and many more. The turmeric particularly stands out as it made the signature yellow color of this dish. The Warung up their level by making the meat so tender it literally fall-off-the-bone. I was personally impressed with their take in this dish. Then I was served with a portion of Sate Lilit, which also memorable not only for its succulent taste, but also the presentation. The minced fish satay comes in a (smoking) little traditional clay griller pot, and lemongrass stick as its skewer. Fancy but still honoring its traditional roots to the fullest. Then comes next is nasi liwet; a dish originally hailing from Solo, Central Java. On this one, The Warung experimenting with modern take, particularly on the coconut milk sauce which are made with soft, feta cheese-like texture. The ‘nasi’ (or rice) is succulent and perfectly blends with juicy coconut milk-wrapped boneless chicken.

    To accompany your meal, you should try what they recommended to me; party ice tea, a glass of refreshing thirst quencher made by combining mint leaves, lime, honey, orange juice and topped with green
    tea, on the rocks, of course!

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  • Aside from its cultural heritage and stunning nature, the next best thing from Bali would be the food. Putu Made brings the best of Balinese food to Jakarta
    26/06/2018 - Devishanty 0 Comments
    Flavors Of Bali

    ou can see some Balinese restaurants in Jakarta, however, most of them are serving specializd menu with traditional concept. Putu Made, one of the latest Boga Group’s restaurants, presents the “Flavors of Bali” concept, that serves wide range of Balinese cuisine. With modern interior, Putu Made opened its first outlet in Senayan City on December 2017.


    To ensure the quality of the food, Putu Made is collaborating with Mandif M. Warokka, one of Indonesian’s best chefs who resides in Bali as its menu creator. It started with the friendship of Kusnadi Rahardja, The President Director of Boga Group, with Chef Mandif who’s always up to exposing local food to the world. After series of success from franchise brands such as Pepper Lunch and Bakerzin, now Boga Group created its own local food brand, that’s more to the hi-end side compared to other restaurants in Boga Group.

    The culinary quest in Putu Made is started with Rujak Putu Made dan Jeruk Bali (pomelo and prawn salad served with a combination of kuah pindang and palm sugar tamarind dressing). Then you can proceed to the next menu such as Sup Ikan Tenggiri (Spanish mackerel in Balinese “basa gede” spiced fish broth) and one of your safest best to accommodate everyone, Sate Platter (6 choices of satay: chicken satay lilit, fish satay lilit, ducksatay lilit, red spice chicken satay, lamb satay, and escargot satay). The good thing is, Putu Made has its own live grill room so you can see your food being grilled by the chefs, it’s a rare feature that can be found in restaurant in malls.

    Other menu that became favorite among families is Coconut Grilled Ayam Klungkung (smoky and spicy grilled chicken grilled over coconut husks with flavorful chilli shrimp paste marinade, served with lawar, kacang panjang, 2 small komoh soup, sambal klungkung and sambal bongkot). Putu Made understands Indonesian’s obsession with sambal, therefore, they also serve the Sambal Platter where you can pick 3 of 6 sambal choices: matah sambal, coconut sambal, bongkot sambal, green sambal, klungkung sambal, and red sambal.

    Of course you can’t call it Balinese food without Nasi Campur Bali. Many people are reluctant to eat nasi campur in Bali because they are concerned about the halal matter, however Putu Made served 3 variants of halal nasi campur: Nasi Campur Bebek, Nasi Campur Bali, and Nasi Campur Ayam.

    With the presence of Putu made, you don’t have to go to Bali just to enjoy the Balinese cuisine. Putu Made offers wide range of high quality Balinese food that’s hard to find anywhere else in Jakarta. If you know Chef Mandif personally, you would have known how strict he is when it comes to food quality, it’s no wonder we have growing numbers of hi-end restaurants that involve his name, especially in Bali.

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  • 18/05/2018 - Billianto Bagus 0 Comments
    Indigenous Is the Key

    Evoking the same spirit of Hotel Indigo Seminyak Beach to draws inspiration from its surrounding local neighborhood, Pottery Café is a perfect spot to sit, relax

    and enjoy the moment with a cup of quality coffee or tea.

    Secludedly tucked just underneath the hotel’s main lobby, Pottery Café is an eye-catching, cozy space to hang out with impressive wooden-based interior design that combines industrial touch and modern contemporary local elements. No, I am not talking about Balinese carvings, statue and your run-of-the-mill ‘island decorations’. Instead, here the elements are brilliantly unified in form of colors and unexpected shape; such as the Balinese black-and-white saput poleng checker patterns that becomes the bar table’s main palette. This made them looks deliberately elegant and instaworthy at the same time. Several sides of the venue’s wall are enhanced with displays of ready-to-buy alluring ceramics made by the island’s very own prominent Kevala Pottery; hence the café’s catchy name.

    Pottery serves finely curated collection of local specialty coffee, chocolate and tea which is 100% cultivated in Indonesia’s archipelago, along with wide arrays of freshly made pastries; charcuterie, artisan breads, pies and everything in-between. Pottery also offers their unique approach of coffee experience by providing their own roasting machine, especially designed in Japan and assembled in Java, producing their very own ‘Seminyak Blend’ creation. The coffees at Pottery Café are Arabica-based with intricate touch of details. Their cold brew Espresso is a must try; with combination of refreshing sour and bitter taste that really best served cold. They really embrace the indigenous natural products as the main ingredients in their creations, from coconut sugar to raw chocolate for pastries and cake.

    One of the menus to be highlighted at Pottery Café is their Afternoon Tea package; which consists nine types of delicious homemade pastries beautifully assorted inside bright-colored wooden ‘birdcage’, accompanied by a pot of tea (or coffee) of your choice. As mentioned above, the cakes and desserts are made using local ingredients, but with a five-star presentation that will easily makes it fit in international-class display. My personal favorite would be the vegetable quiche, which combines the tender, creamy salt and savory of chopped broccoli, cheese and crunchy crust. But there are others that catches my palate as well; such as coconut mango pudding, black charcoal chonx, chocolate macaron, classic scone with cream and jam on side (the cream is cheekily placed in a round ceramic box, resembling a pomade), Japanese-style coconut tear drop jelly, croissant chicken sandwich, to Indonesian staple sweet treat, es cendol.

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  • 18/05/2018 - Billianto Bagus 0 Comments
    The Beans of Zeal and Knowledge

    Seated on the side of Bypass Sunset Road main junction, Black Eye Coffee & Roastery use their combination of passion and knowledge to create a delicious cup

    of Joe from curated Indonesian-grown beans.


    Nowadays, coffee experience has become somewhat a latest trend for café goers in Bali, and Black Eye Coffee Sunset Road is one of the most sought-out new spot to indulge ourselves with a de-stressing cup of coffee. The quaint café / dining venue is actually the second branch from the successful one up at Bedugul precinct, owned by SecretGarden Village eco-recreation center.

    Convenient is one word that pops out in my mind once I set foot inside the cafe. Spacious with lavish industrial touch here and there, the Fully A/C-ed main room (and its smoking area) can easily contains 50 pax simultaneously; with a coffee bar on one side and transparent see-through kitchen area on another.

    Black Eye Coffee & Roastery takes their specialty seriously. From my conversation with their baristas, I get the impression that they really understand and passionate about what they’re doing. I was told that the cafe own two main roasteries in Bedugul and Jakarta, and specifically put their effort in embracing the richness of Indonesian archipelago’s coffee bean. Currently, they use at least 9 types of beans all across the island nation; such as Gayo, Mandailing, Peaberry and Lampung’s robusta from Sumatra, Bajawa Flores, to Central Java’s underrated Ciwidey-grown beans.

    During my visit, I tried several types of coffees made by various methods; from classic cappuccino to nowadays favorite Vietnam Drip. The coffee in general is mild with bitter aftertaste; not too strong, but just enough to create a pleasant combination on my tongue. One of the menu on their coffee-based beverage list that really catches my attention is called ‘Lone Ranger’; a glass of cold drink which made by boldly combining fresh orange juice, espresso and honey dew syrup, creating an incredibly distinctive flavors of sweet, bitter and sour. A must try for coffee lovers!

    Delicious coffees aside, Black Eye Coffee & Roastery also serves wide arrays of Indonesian and pan-Asian meticulous menus. One of their recommendations is called The Luwus Signature Bebek Timbungan; a fine blend of traditional smoked duck cooked in bamboo and served along with white rice, stir-fried vegetables and three types of homemade sambal chili sauce as condiment. For those who prefer seafood or fish-based meal, Nasi Bakar Salmon can be a perfect choice as well. This unique menu is cooked with traditional method by putting all ingredients in banana leaves, creating a succulent mixture of coconut milk, grilled rice and savory shredded salmon; a real taste of Indonesian’s majestic ocean produce.

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  • 13/04/2018 0 Comments
    Served With Love

    There is nothing cheesy about ‘love’, if you rightfully implement it in the things you do for others, and Watercress captures the essence of the said word perfectly through their Byron Bay-inspired café; where everyone can feel the whole experience of enjoying good food, vibe and companion in utmost abundance.


    Situated on the side of small road leading to Batubelig and Canggu area, Watercress resembles an intimate, homey gathering space with comfy open-air setting. The dining space comprises of brick walls and wooden frames to give away the warm, down-to-earth yet classy atmosphere. The restaurant aims to honor the food itself as much as the one who would enjoy it. Every nourishment are carefully crafted so all of its natural nutrients not getting lost in the process, with sincerity and love that start from the kitchen all the way to each guest’s table.


    The menu of Watercress covers all kinds of Western and Asian healthy dishes, including for those who prefer non-dairy selections. For lunchtime dines session, I was recommended to try their roast beef bagel; a succulent portion of soft and tasty bagel bread sandwiching perfectly roasted beef slabs. The fine mixture of the pickled horseradish, quality meat and bread filled my taste bud with pleasant combination of flavors. The same could be said to B.L.A.S.T, a generous-sized burger which name act as acronym to its main ingredients; namely bacon, lettuce, avocado, sprout, tomato and tasty homemade mayo. This creative dish combines some elements you wouldn’t have thought fit together, but they really do in a meticulously delicious way!


    For those who opt for non-meat meal, fret not, as this is one of the area where Watercress particularly shine. I am pleased to try some selections of their organic goodness; such as Chia Seed Pudding, a blends of delightful sour-meets-sweet taste that comes from the mixture of chia seed jelly-like pudding, coconut cream, lemon sorbet, pomelo and burnt coconut, or Tropical Fruit of Paradise; basically a fine assorted fresh chops of tropical fruit sprinkled with crunchy toasted coconut. The Superfood Smoothie Bowl is also a great pick for a sunny summer noon, which consists of beautifully shaped mixed berries, banana, bee pollen, chia seeds and shaved coconut smeared with honey on top of frozen acai berry smoothies.


    The attention to small details and ‘handle with love’ mentality is what makes Watercress really stands out among its competitors. They offer a holistic good food experience not only by the flavor of the dishes itself, but the sincerity of their service as well.


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  • 13/04/2018 0 Comments
    Salubrious Sustenance

    Defining healthy food is not as easy as determining which junk food is tastier. Sometime, we tend to care less of what kind of nourishment we put inside our body. Luckily, back-to-nature conscious is currently in motion around the globe, and in Bali, there are some restaurant which already aware to the importance of organic sustenance; one of them is Living Well.


    At the surface, Living Well serves all-occasion Western and Asian classic favorites as their main menu, but on deeper level, they deliberately emphasis on the elements which created each dishes. The restaurant owner, Joanna, choose to grow all of basic ingredients herself, ensuring every meals free from any chemical preservatives whatsoever. She currently had several farms up in Bedugul area, and also a small garden in her backyard where she grew various vegetables, fruits and crops with advanced all-organic farming method. Vegetables, fruit, eggs, flour, poultry meat, to coffee bean, tea leaves and soda (!) are carefully curated and nurtured with natural, organic materials before they even ends up in the kitchen. 


    The restaurant’s dining venue also boldly represents this main concept. Pots of plants, vegetables and flowers greet each guest at the entrance; not just for mere decoration to give a luxuriant feels, but also to show a glimpse of their outstanding benefit for bod’s well-being. 


    As mentioned above, there are arrays of delicious healthy menu to choose at Living Well. Try their Vegetable Wrap, for one. Tender homemade whole wheat spinach tortilla skin filled with organic goodness from roasted vegetables; mix salad, mozzarella cheese and tahini sauce to enhance the flavour. Then also the Rainbow Chicken Noodles; which consists of homemade egg noodle which comes in three different colors; all made by natural substances (beetroot for red, pumpkin for yellow, spinach for green), with soup on-side, oriental Chinese style. The texture and flavor of each noodle blends perfectly with the chicken soup and complimented by the tender meatballs. If you prefer rice, their aromatic sweet and spicy Thai Beef Rice Bowl is a great pick; consisting of assorted vegetables, pan-fried black pepper wagyu beef and brown rice. Personally, I would prefer meat than plants, but Living Well’s Gado-Gado is one of the best I ever tasted. The tasty peanut sauce goes really well with mixture of fresh organic vegetables.


    At the end of the day, ‘We are what we eat’ is not a mere old saying; it should be the way of our life. Living Well aims to spread this knowledge so everyone could begin to indulge all the good things the earth has naturally provides. Plant the seed, sow the blessing!


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  • 13/04/2018 0 Comments
    Breaking Boundaries

    Established on 1999 as a gourmet shop, Café Dijon Bali now has expanded their business into a full-fledge healthy culinary destination to cater local, expats and culinary enthusiast in general. 


    If you have live in this island for this past 5 years, Dijon is one of the restaurants which name will repeatedly come out as a recommended to-go place for delicious healthy food. Tucked nicely on an interstate of grand Simpang Siur Square, the dining venue consists of cozy indoor and outdoor areas that you can deliberately choose according to your mood. Sitting just right across their famous gourmet shop during my visit, I am impressed of how much Dijon has progressed from a humble (albeit quality) culinary store to a 60-seat favorite hang-out spot everyone knew and loves right now.


    Dijon serves array of tantalizing dairy and non-dairy menus, but focused on gluten free ingredients and homemade-based cooking. They guarantee no additional flavor whatsoever added in their meals, let alone the artificial one. By deciding to go the ‘halal’ way just recently, they wish to break the boundaries and cater a broader-range of audience, especially Indonesian market and other Muslim country, so the religion’s devoted practitioners can conveniently enjoy their dine without any guilt-feeling whatsoever.


    For a starter, I was offered Quinoa Chick Pea Salad; a satisfying portion of organic, healthy goodness served with edamame humus, beetroot, baby spinach, to half-split boiled eggs. The salty and savory hummus spread made from Japanese edamame soybean blends perfectly with other ingredients leaves me wanting for more. Then, the Grilled Salmon Steak was up next. This is widely considered as one of Dijon’s staple menu. The fresh vegetables on side blends perfectly with precisely grilled salmon slab, especially the seaweed which gives away a nice touch to satisfyingly wrap the overall taste. But my personal favorite would be the homemade gomae sauce served as a condiment for this menu; it certainly fit with any kinds of food with its sweet, sour and creamy taste. The good news is that the restaurant also sells them separately, so you can go and grab a bottle to savor at home! 


    If you prefer to have something light and tasty, order their Baguette Wrap; which comes with rich filling of organic vegetable mixture, or the Coconut Pannacotta with passion fruit sauce as a trusty dessert, with combination of sour, sweet and tangible coconut flavor. 


    Maintaining your quality is one thing, but progressively expanding it is a different level of ‘inspiring’ achievement altogether, so kudos Café Dijon, for living up the name and reputation as one of Bali’s pioneer in healthy food and quality gourmet.


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  • 13/04/2018 - Devishanty 0 Comments
    Western Meets Asian

    William’s offers various exciting layer of flavor and texture in almost all of its dishes.

    Since its inception in September 2017, William’s has become the rising new rising restaurant in one of Jakarta’s most competitive region for food business, Senopati and SCBD. William’s is offering the fusion concept of Western meets Asian, along with the coffee, wine, and bar. Simply said, it’s the hottest hangout place in the block.


    The name William’s was inspired by a kid who has a constant curiosity for new food, appreciates a warm, hearty meal and always has room for dessert. It’s not too surprising that the name came from the owner’s son. The place also displays some interesting interior combination of teal American dinner with some touch of copper in many places.

    The kitchen is headed by Chef Alpin Reyner, an At-Sunrice, Singapore graduate who also became the Chef de Partie of Nomz Kitchen & Pastry, one of the hottest restaurant in Grand Indonesia, Jakarta. Alpin was originally hired as William’s consultant to design the food menu. When the owner offered him the position as Head Chef, the tattooed chef couldn’t refuse the kind offer.

    “We offer Asian-Western fusion concept that’s more about comfort food. Unlike the more refined fine food with smaller portion, we want to provide quick lunch menus for the executives working around SCBD. Our menus are simple, once you read them, you’ll understand what they’re all about,” said Alpin.

    The food menu is divided into 2 main sections: Western and Asian. But before the main course, you should definitely try their appetizer, Watermelon Salad (cured watermelon, vanilla mascarpone, balsamic caviar, cashew crumb, dill and lemon fluid). I mean, just look at the photo of the menu in their Instagram. We never expect you can present a slice of cured watermelon so beautifully like this. They also boast interesting cooking method in balsamic caviar and cashew crumb to play with the flavor balance and texture.

    The Western menu Grilled Chicken Roll (juicy chicken roll with pomme puree, watercress, mushrooms and egg yolk confit) is a good starting point to know what William’s is all about. It tasted good, yet healthy, what’s more to ask? The menu reminds me of how good the combination of chicken with mushroom really is.

    Salmon and Gulai (crispy skin pan-fried salmon served with gulai sauce and corn salsa over chili infused rice) is the highlight of the Asian ,enu. The portion is very generous with its big cut of salmon over lot of chili infused rice, please remember to save some room in your belly for more.

    If you want to impress your friend in social media, an Instagrammable menu is a must. William’s has what you’re looking for, the Dragon’s Nest (edible soil and charcoal dust served with chocolate egg-shell, cheesecake, chill frosted meringue, lemon gel and red dragon fruit coulis). Texture-wise, there’s so much going on this plate, from the trending edible soil, soft cheese cake, snapping chocolate dome, and the main attraction would the liquid nitrogen which was poured onto it. Get your Instastory ready, ladies and gentlemen!

    As mentioned before, along with the restaurant, William’s also has its own dedicated bar corner. Chlorophyll (fresh blended spinach shaked with apple and lemon juice, green apple and mango flavored) and French Flute (vodka, black raspberry liqueur, with lemon and pineapple juice) are our refreshing choices to end the meal.

    William’s got everything you want in a hangout place, whether it’s fusion dishes, Instagrammable dessert, coffee, wine, or cocktail. With its strategic location and interesting layer of flavor and texture in almost all of its dishes, William’s will definitely be trending place in foodie community soon.


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  • 13/04/2018 - Devishanty 0 Comments
    [ID] - Best of Both World

    Terkadang makanan sehat tidak selalu soal bahan baku, namun melalui cara masaknya. Jika Anda seorang pecinta hidup sehat, makan di luar terkadang cukup membingungkan, terutama jika Anda sudah memiliki anak. Anda ingin makanan yang rasanya enak dan mudah diterima anak kecil, namun Anda juga ingin makanan yang menyehatkan. Sekarang, Anda tak perlu berkompromi karena Goobne telah hadir di Indonesia, tepatnya di Pantai Indah Kapuk, Jakarta.


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  • 13/04/2018 - Devishanty 0 Comments
    Best of Both World

    Sometimes healthy food is not always about the ingredient, it’s how you cook it

    If you’re living a healthy lifestyle, dining out with family can be a bit confusing, especially when you have little children. You want something tasty and easy for children, like fried chicken, but you also want food that’s good for your health. Now, you don’t have to compromise any longer as Goobne has arrived in Indonesia, in Pantai Indah Kapuk, Jakarta, to be specific.


    The name came from the Korean word “Goobda” which literally means to roast, and it explains what Goobne mainly do, selling healthy roasted chicken. The brand was established in South Korea, 2005 and is known for endorsing popular Korean artists such as Girl’s Generation, EXO, and Seo Hyun Jin as their ambassador. Until now, Goobne already has over 1.100 outlets in Korea only and managed to become the top 3 Korean chicken restaurant brands. Along with restaurants, Goobne also has its own sauce business, chicken farm, and chicken slaughter machine with the capacity of slaughtering 120.000 per day. In March 17th 2018, the brand was officially introduced to Indonesia through PT. Goobne Indonesia Utama as its master franchiser in the country.


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  • 13/04/2018 - Rian Farisa 0 Comments
    [ID] - Burgreens Express - One Step Closer to Live Healthily

    Sebagai salah satu pionir yang memperkenalkan makanan dan gaya hidup sehat di Jakarta, Burgreens telah menjadi sebuah bisnis restoran yang semakin dekat dengan para pelanggannya. Untuk mencapainya, keputusan re-branding menjadi Burgreens Express merupakan langkah yang vital. Namun apa perbedaannya dengan Burgreens yang kita kenal? Mari kita cari tahu bersama.


    Berawal dari sebuah visi yang mulia, Burgreens ingin berbagi sebuah pendekatan yang begitu berwarna untuk hidup sehat serta kemudahan mencapainya bagi para pelanggannya. Sebagai sebuah bisnis restoran yang memiliki misi, Burgreens telah menyiapkan menu makanan dengan bahan dasar tumbuhan yang lengkap dan melakukan kolaborasi dengan para petani lokal dan wanita untuk memproduksi makanan sehat yang berkelanjutan serta tetap bertanggungjawab atas rantai suplainya.


    Dari segi makanan, chef sekaligus pemilik Max Mandias pernah berbicara dengan saya langsung beberapa tahun yang lalu. Ia ingin menyampaikan bahwa makanan sehat juga bisa terasa lezat. Maka melalui proses panjang, Burgreens kini memiliki sebuah menu yang solid dan terdiri dari makanan-makanan yang unik. Di antara yang menjadi favorit saya pribadi adalah “Greenogiri Platter” yang terdiri dari onigiri beras merah, tempe yang telah dibumbui, ditemani sate jamur kerang yang dimasak dengan saus teriyaki, serta salad dengan wafu dressing.


    Makanan unggulan lainnya di sini adalah “Mini Quatro” - empat burger mini dengan empat rasa yang berbeda. Atau mungkin Anda ingin mencoba kesukaan Chef Max yaitu “Tempeh Gomashio” yang merupakan patty tempe yang diselimuti pesto kacang mete dan bumbu gomashio. Tempe kemudian tersaji di atas salad organik dan jamur. “Vegan Hot Dog” juga adalah menu yang sangat menarik. Sosisnya terbuat dari chickpea, tahu, dan seitan (daging dari gandum) dan diselimuti roti gandum, saus BBQ, mayones vegetarian, mustard, serta acar dan bawang.


    Mengawali kehadirannya hanya di area perumahan selama beberapa tahun membuat Burgreens menyadari bahwa visi untuk memberikan kemudahan bagi para pelanggannya bisa jadi justru sulit untuk dicapai. Maka langkah yang dilakukan adalah dengan re-branding menjadi Burgreens Express dan mulai membuka outlet baru di shopping mall serta daerah komersial. Konsep baru ini dirancang untuk dapat memenuhi kebutuhan makanan sehat warga Jakarta yang menginginkan kemudahan serta kecepatan. Dari segi makanan sendiri Burgreens masih tetap menggunakan menu lamanya serta tetap berinovasi menciptakan hidangan-hidangan baru.


    Sejak Oktober 2016, outlet pertama Burgreens Express berdiri di Dharwangsa - sebuah keputusan strategis untuk mendekatkan diri dengan pasar Jakarta Selatan yang cocok dengan konsep ini. Lebih jauh lagi, Burgreens juga mengadakan berbagai kegiatan seperti clean-eating talkshow, demo masak, acara edukasi di sekolah-sekolah, serta tentunya katering.


    Burgreens juga berpartisipasi di acara-acara seperti Namaste Festival, YogFest di Taman Menteng, serta Paw Day di Taman Langsat yang diadakan oleh Jakarta Animal Aid Network (JAAN). Selain itu, Burgreens mengadakan Pasar Semesta - sebuah festival yang merayakan hidup sehat dan produk lokal serta alami. Acara ini berlangsung selama dua hari di Burgreens Express Dharmawangsa dan dikunjungi lebih dari 800 orang.


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  • 13/04/2018 - Rian Farisa 0 Comments
    Burgreens Express - One Step Closer to Live Healthily

    As one among the pioneers who introduce healthy food and lifestyle in Jakarta, Burgreens has become a business that grows closer than ever with its patrons. One vital move to achieve that was its re-branding into Burgreens Express. So what’s the difference with the Burgreens we used to know? Let’s find out about it. 


    With a noble vision to begin with, Burgreens wants to share everyone its colorful approach of healthy living while also provides a degree of convenience and reachability for its customers. Burgreens is indeed a mission-driven restaurant business with an elaborated plant-based menu and collaborates with local farmers and women to produce healthy and sustainable food by also staying responsible with the supply chain.


    In terms of food, the chef proprietor Max Mandias himself spoke with me personally a few years back. He wanted all of us to know that healthy food can also be made delicious. It was a grinding process of trial and error which culminates into Burgreens now having a solid lineup of inventive dishes. Among my personal favorite - the “Greenogiri Platter”, comprises of brown rice onigiri filled with spiced tempeh and accompanied with oyster mushroom skewer cooked with fruit-based teriyaki sauce and on the side is salad with wafu dressing.


    Another signature dish from Burgreens is the “Mini Quarto” - four mini burgers with four different flavors. Or perhaps you might want to try Chef Max’s favorite - the “Tempeh Gomashio”. This one has the all the goodness of tempeh patties with cashew pesto and covered with homemade gomashio seasonings. It is served on a bed of organic mixed salad with mushrooms. The vegan hot dog is also an interesting choice. The sausage is made from chickpeas, tofu, and seitan (“wheat-meat”) and wrapped in whole wheat bun, homemade BBQ sauce, vegan mayo, mustard, and chopped pickles and onions.


    With their restaurants originally located deep in residential areas, Burgreens realized that the vision to provide reachability for everyone might be compromised. It was then decided that Burgreens should be re-branded and start opening up outlets at shopping malls and business areas. They believe that the new concept can cater more demanding, fast-paced Jakartans who are always in the search for something good and healthy. But in terms of menu, Burgreens stays faithful with the old lineup and continuously creating something new and exciting.


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  • 07/04/2018 0 Comments
    Enticing Taste of the Sea

    Combining creative flair and fresh ingredients straight from the ocean, Seasalt restaurant redefines seafood dining experience with classy touch of Japanese infusion.


    In the island of Bali, seafood is obviously a kind of easy-to-found delicacy; with lots of traditional restaurants offering their own take of ocean-induced menus, but nothing quite done it as refined and thoughtful as Seasalt. Situated on the lower level of Alila Seminyak, I easily discovered the seaside dining venue just past a set of stairs from their main lobby.


    Let’s first admire the quaint interior of Seasalt Seminyak. Lavishly built by wooden and stone materials, the fully air-conned indoor area is designed resembling a stylish beach residence to enact a ‘homey’ feeling while the outdoor area comprises of vibrant open kitchen, convenient chairs and elevated wooden decks where one can freely gaze onto the ocean and feel its gentle tropical ambience. I opted to enjoy my dine indoor during my visit, though; sat conveniently on a plush, elegant sofa with dim light setting that enhance the atmosphere makes me wonder if I can just stay there to relax long after the last plate has been taken off the table.


    The menus of Seasalt pay a great tribute to the ocean’s natural produces, but with a fine twist of Japanese infusion. ‘Salt’ of course serves as a main ingredients in their cooking, but also so much more. Starting with the dishes from their ‘Lounge’ menu, the Soft Shell Crab took me by surprise in a very good, delicious way; tender and crunchy deep-fried young crab glazed with salted egg yolk sauce leaves me craving for more on each rich-flavored bite. 


    For ‘Lunch’ and ‘Dinner’, I can absolutely recommend their Cured Gindara Beetroot, which brilliantly combines healthy beetroot vegetable with fresh gindara fish meat into one pleasantly buttery, fragrant-flavored dish to satiate the taste bud. I also got the honor to try their new Deep-Fried Octopus menu. The crispy baby octopus blends so perfectly with gomae dressing and dried spinach that I have to resist the urge to ask for another portion. Yes, it is that good, people; you should definitely try this one out. Seasalt also serve arrays of wildly popular Hawaiian ‘poke bowl’ selections. I tried the Seafood one; which composed by blends of ocean goodness from shrimp, mahi-mahi and okonomi dashi sauce on top of hot white rice.


    To accompany my satisfying feast, I ordered some of Seasalt’s latest cocktail concoctions; such as the dashingly titled Mr & Ms Alila; a clear mix of gin & tonic with soothing citrus-y flavor that comes from a slice of lime, it represents Alila brand in a classy form of beverage. Another one that I tried, Moscow Mule, is a refreshing blend of homemade spicy ginger beer, served on-the-rock in a vintage signature mug.


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  • 07/04/2018 0 Comments
    ​Beef When It Sizzles

    With over 450 stores in Korea, Magal BBQ is definitely one of the most popular BBQ chain restaurants in the Land of the Morning Calm. PASSION visits its new restaurant in Bali to learn more about the joy of galmaegi. 


    Since opening its door last November, Magal BBQ has impressed the island’s meat lovers with its Korean delights and signature combo set menu of pork and beef meats. Taking a seat in one of the comfortable booths, I can watch how serious everybody is about their meats. The other guests are intently watching their sizzling meat being grilled on the table. As a treat, we decided to order the Beef Combo – a three tiered beefy treat made of prime beef boneless short ribs, beef rib finger, marinated beef skirt meat, shrimp, sausage, mushroom and an extra sushi with boneless short rib. 


    Soon, our helpful server arrives in our table with a tray filled with banchan or condiments. The generous and free-flow small delights are one of my favourite things about eating in a Korean restaurant. One can see how serious the restaurant is based on the banchan alone. Here, we have a delightful tangy seaweed pickles miyeok muchim, perfectly sour and crisp kimchi, sweet macaroni salad, scallion salad, and the savoury thin pancake. Based on the banchan, I can tell that the food is going to be really good. 


    We have a delightful time grilling the beefs as we like it – and having a sip of soju in between bites. A circular moat on our griller is poured with beaten egg and soon, we are helping ourselves with a bite of the crusty omelette. The beefs are imported and thinly cut – a truly juicy and satisfying affair, especially when I dip it into the sauce and wrap it in a lettuce leaf. The skirt meat or galmaegi is tender and knowing that it has a high protein but lower content of fat, helps me in feeling less guilty about this midday treat. 


    Lead by a Korean chef, Magal BBQ intends to maintain its quality and authenticity. They went to a great length to procure certain spices and sauces from Korea, as well as making their own kimchi. The attention to details can be found in their latest dish, the Bossam. The pork belly was boiled in spices, thinly sliced and served with three different kimchi: the mild baek kimchi, the geotjeori red kimchi and the radish kimchi. Each has a varying degree of spiciness and goes perfectly well with the juicy pork belly. With a delightful attention to service, no wonder Magal has found its loyal following in Jakarta, Bandung, Surabaya, and soon open another branch in Medan.


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  • 07/04/2018 0 Comments
    A Carnivore’s Delight

    Since its opening in 2015, The Butchers Club Steakhouse has become a destination for discerning carnivores. PASSION revisits this excellent purveyor of dry aged meats and sinks our fangs into their decadent burgers. 


    Set in a laid-back industrial style, The Butchers Club Steakhouse way of doing meat is anything but relaxed. As I walk into the restaurant, the long open kitchen with red tiled counter is busy with the business of grilling. In the far corner of the room, a large sized temperature and humidity-controlled dry-ageing fridge facility is showcasing some sexy chops and rumps of 200-day grain-fed stockyards Black Angus from Australia. At the moment, those cuts are in the process of perfecting their fat profiles to acquire more tenderness and flavour for at least 21 days.


    The restaurant was intent to serve just burgers in the first two years of its operation. But after learning that the island’s carnivores voraciously demand good steaks, Gareth Moore, the proprietor and the jack-of-all-trades as he cheekily calls himself, decided to satiate their cravings. “We basically want to please our guests by giving them larger menu and more choices. However our priority lies with the beef,” explains Moore. With wood-fired dry-aged steaks such as rib eye, rump, striploin and rib chop, I am torn between going to have burger or steak for my lunch. 


    Sipping a glass of what possibly the coldest beer on the island, I eventually commit myself to the Wu Tang Style Burger. Slightly charred and medium rare, the burger arrives on the table in a beautifully stacked meat-to-bun ratio with the company of golden crispy fries. With sriracha sauce, homemade kimchi, cheddar cheese, crispy sweet potato tempura and a generous drizzle of kewpie mayonnaise, the unconventional stack may shock the burger purist – if such person exist. For what is a burger if not a decadent mixture of things in one drippingly tasty bite? Exotically, the flavour works well together in a crescendo of sweet, sour, and savoury. This tantalizing dish is a suitable tribute to Hong Kong and its rich mixture of Asian culture, where the establishment was firstly founded.


    Their Double Happiness Burger also deserves a shout out for, well, giving double happiness indeed. How can one not doubly be happy after a large bite of double patty, double cheese, and double bacon between two buttery grilled sandwiches? It is large enough for two – although if one is extremely hungry, one can take it down between sips of the Pink Diamond. The cranberry infused vodka lightens up the taste bud with its slightly sour rosella syrup, lime, apple juice and cherry brandy. “There is no secret to our burger. Just good quality beef and nothing else!” states Moore. We definitely agree. With such a good dry-aged beef, why would we want anything else?


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  • 28/03/2018 - Devishanty 0 Comments
    The Korean Invasion

    Korean food invades Indonesia through pop culture, just like what the Japanese did in the 1990’s.

    You can’t overlook the role of K-Pop culture in introducing Korean food to Indonesians. In most Korean dramas, you’ll see many scenes of Korean actors and actresses have Korean dishes, it is no wonder the Korean fans started to have some interest on Korean food. Suddenly, you started to notice new Korean restaurants in some regions in Jakarta, especially in the leading malls. Of course, it’s a bit confusing to pick few names from the vast array of Korean restaurants, especially for those who are not familiar with Korean food. We present you, Chung Gi Wa as one of the best Korean BBQ restaurants in its league.

    Chung Gi Wa first opened its door to public in 1997 by Mrs. Lee In Jung in Jl. Dharmawangsa III. Of course, the hype of Korean food was not as big as it is now, therefore, Chung Gi Wa was having a hard time back then, until they found Chef Kris Kim, who has led the kitchen department until now. The restaurant opened its second outlet in 2009 to introduce Korean food to wider audience. However, in 2014-2017, Chung Gi Wa already have 10 outlets in Jakarta, Bandung, Semarang, Surabaya, and the last one, the 15th outlet, had just opened in August 2017, located in Makassar.

    In Korean, Chung Gi Wa literally means blue roof tile. In Korea, blue roof tile is the symbol of tradition and aristocracy, they use the name to make the customers feel like a nobility with special service from the waiters with Korean traditional interior and atmosphere.

    Learning from past experience since it opened for the first time, Chung Gi Wa is continuously evaluating itself to suit the the Korean food to the local taste. Chung Gi Wa is also put special attention to the quality of the meat and vegetable as the main ingredients in the restaurants to provide healthy and nutritious food within affordable price.

    The meat handling is the reason that put Chung Gi Wa away from the other Korean restaurants, one of them is by always begin with the aging process. Not many Korean BBQ restaurants are willing to go this far. In addition, Chung Gi Wa also grow its own vegetables in Ciawi, Bogor for better quality control. They also built the central kitchen to produce and keep the ingredients to maintain the taste and the quality consistency in each outlet.

    Korean food is always processed with high attention to nutrition and color combination. The Korean also often implements the fermentation system. The technique is used to produce various Korean dishes and spices. Korean restaurants also have their own signature, by presenting various kinds of side dishes to complement your meal.
    If you’re a BBQ fan, Korean restaurants will be more attractive for its wider range of meat and specification compared to Japanese BBQ. In addition, you will have more side dishes and sauce to enjoy the BBQ dining experience.

    As a starter, Chung Gi Wa Special (premium rib eye) is a wise choice to see the effect of the dry aging to the meat in Chung Gi Wa, meanwhile, to get richer taste and juicier texture, Bul Galbi (marinated short rib) is definitely our favorite. Not everyday you can have this rich, umami, yet very tender short rib.

    Chung Gi Wa also has other menus to introduce us the Korean food through menus such as Budae Jjigae (rich tasting spicy sausage & spam stew with kimchi, minced pork, vegetables, rice cake and ramen), Haemul Pajeon (Korean pancake with seafood and green onion), and Japchae Beef (glass noodle with sautéed vegetables, beef). These menu showed us that Korean taste is more than just kimchi

    Dining in Korean restaurant is a unique experience that you can’t get anywhere else. If you’re used to eat in Padang restaurants, you’d think that you can pick the side dishes and pay them afterwards, but the good news is, in here, they’re all free. The side dishes that you’ll have will be adjusted to the menu that you’ve ordered. Furthermore, if you want more, you can always ask for refill.


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  • 28/03/2018 - Devishanty 0 Comments
    Beyond Expectation

    We know the title’s is very cliché, but we couldn’t better words to describe the experience of dining in Bornga

    Since its inception at Jalan Wolter Monginsidi, South Jakarta on August 8th 2011, Bornga (read: Born Ga) has believed that every guest must come home filled and satisfied. Bornga comes from Korean word which means home of the ancestors, If you see many expatriates in Korean restaurant, in here you’ll see the opposite, especially on weekend and holiday.


    The Korean franchise brand has conducted some necessary adaptations to suit the local taste bud. One of them is by reducing the use of garlic, as we all know, Koreans really love aroma of garlic. However, Bornga is still setting the high standard by paying attention to every detail. They have their own rule on the cooking duration, the weight of each ingredient to get consistent result. In addition, the main franchisor regularly visits each outlet to ensure every single one meet the standard.

    One of Bornga’s strong points is the presence of complete set of side dish, even you’ll get more than what you order. If you order BBQ menus, you’ll have more than 6 side dishes, including their famous seaweed soup. Some customers are even willing to pay for it because the soup is good for health, especially for the elders.

    Seeing the amount of the vegetable provided, you’ll stop wondering why Koreans are famous for their healthy lifestyle as they consume loads of vegetable. You can eat it your way, but most people prefer to wrap the BBQ meat using the vegetable and then dip it into the dipping sauce.

    Favorite Menus
    One of the must try in Bornga is their Woo Samgyeop. As one of the first menu created by Bornga, it stays the most favorite with the thinly sliced beef loin. You can have cuts with less fat to the waiter, but don’t recommend it as the fat in the beef loin gives it more umami to the overall taste.

    Bornga also offers Saeng Galbi, ribs with the classic savory and tender flavor served fresh, without freezing, Kkot Sal (bottom sirloin triangle) Daepae Useol: the tender and chewy beef tongue that is good for skin and stamina. One of our favorite is still the marinated ribs, which was executed very well by Bornga in their menu Yangneom Galbi, made of the ribs with the juiciest gravy.

    Aside from BBQ menus, Bornga also provides other Korean favorites such as Haemul Tteok-jjim, a combination of seafood such as fresh prawn, crab, mussel, squid, octopus, fish cake and vegetable such as bamboo sprout, mushroom, chinese cabbage, and cabbage mixed with spicy sauce and simmered-dish. If you don’t eat seafood, perhaps you’ll be interested in Chadol Doenjang-jjigae, soybean paste stew with beef brisket, enjoy it better with rice and vegetables all mixed together in a large bowl. Of course, they also have other staple Korean dishes such as Jap Chae, Haemul Pa Jeon, and Bornga Naengmyeon.


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  • 28/03/2018 - Rian Farisa 0 Comments
    AB Steak - The Haven for Steak Aficionados

    Staying true to the roots while continuously expanding his visionary F&B empire across the globe, the Korean chef Akira Back opened AB Steak just last year and has since garnered rave reviews. As for what makes the steakhouse really special, let’s find out.


    Following the huge success of Akira Back Indonesia - the chef’s first restaurant in Jakarta, there’s no way for Chef Akira but to move forward from here. The untapped potentials and endless curiosity of Jakarta’s diners sparked the brave move and at the same time making Jakarta among the few cities in the world with more than one Akira Back’s restaurant. 


    Akira Back Indonesia itself has set the bar very high in the competition, thanks to its highly consistent quality as well as service. It is only natural that the crowd would expect the same from AB Steak and our visit there last time exceeded all the expectations.


    AB Steak by Chef Akira Back is a revolutionary restaurant that incorporates the American-style of steakhouse imbued with lush Korean flairs. The restaurant offers a new level of dining experience not just for gourmet food seekers but for true steak aficionados as well.


    As one can see from menu, already AB Steak has prepared a complete lineup of in-house dry aged beef from 30 days and up to 120 days. The dry aging method is very much preferred nowadays in many steakhouses all over the world. The process itself makes the flavor more concentrated and at times, giving away unique characteristics like for example the taste of aged cheese and the pleasant meaty texture. 


    The best part of the dining experience here is when the chef themselves visits your dining table personally and grill the meat in front of the guests. The cut of your choice was previously trimmed to minute details and then brushed with garlic oil to give that glossy good look. After that, it is simply rubbed only with salt and pepper, no marination needed. The steak then grilled to perfection, sliced, and ready to be enjoyed - optionally using six different salts with different flavors from truffles, yuja, yuzu, Sriracha, garlic, and the Himalayan salt.


    As for the steaks, diners are encouraged to traverse across different cuts of meat. Choices of the premium cuts are ranging from grass-fed wagyu of NY strip or skirt steak and up to the luxurious Ohmi short ribs or Chateau Uenae’s Hokkaido “Snow” California cut. The must-try came from the lineup of in-house dry aged meat selections such as the 45 days or 90 days old porterhouse, the excellent and juicy 21 days old “Picanha”, and the exquisite Spinalis Dorsi or the crème a la crème of the ribs.


    The more pronounced Korean part also appears from the starters and side dishes sections. Among our most memorable was the Chilean blue mussels with wagyu meatballs, and accompanied with crispy tteokbokki - all dressed in gochujang butter sauce. Other than that the Tuna Yukke was presented neatly with cucumber and scallion muchim and decorated with seaweed bugak and sesame sauce. The mind-blowing appetizer goes for the bone marrow, perfectly roasted and paired with beef tartare made from wagyu, served on toasted brioche.


    One of the best accompanying dishes for the steaks is the roasted Brussels sprout with garlic confit and the crispy rice puffs. Another interesting choice would be the bibimbap with foie gras, poached egg, mixed vegetables, short ribs, with the always delectable gochujang sauce.


    Chef Akira himself is no stranger in the world’s top class fine-dining scene. It all started with years of his upbringing as a professional chef, and even previously as an athlete, in the United States. Not only in Dallas, Las Vegas, and Toronto; Chef Akira Back has already now spread his business across to Asia - from Seoul, Bangkok, Singapore, Hanoi, Jakarta, to as far as New Delhi. DOSA in Seoul is among his highly successful restaurants which was opened just mere two years ago and was already awarded with one Michelin star in 2017.


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  • 24/03/2018 - Devishanty 0 Comments
    [ID] - Contemporary Coffee Shop

    Belakangan ini, sulit rasanya menentukan batasan yang jelas antara coffee shop tradisional dan restoran. Untungnya, ini bukan berarti hal buruk. Di tengah British Invasion pada tahun 1960an, musisi blues Inggris dapat dibagi menjadi 2 kategori. Eric Clapton mengaku sebagai blues purist, sementara orang seperti Jeff Beck dan Jimmy Page (Led Zeppelin) lebih suka menembus batasan blues tradisional dan membuat sesuatu yang kontemporer, sesuatu yang progresif. Tampaknya sejarah kembali terulang, kali ini di industri kopi.


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  • 24/03/2018 - Devishanty 0 Comments
    Contemporary Coffee Shop

    It is getting more and more difficult to draw a clear line between traditional coffee shop and restaurant nowadays. Fortunately, it doesn’t mean a bad thing


    In the 1960’s British invasion, the English bluesmen were grouped into 2 categories. Eric Clapton was a self-proclaimed blues purist, while others such as Jeff Beck and Jimmy Page of Led Zeppelin prefer to stretch the traditional blues into……something contemporary, something progressive. It appears that history repeats itself, this time in coffee industry.


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  • 26/02/2018 - Eve Tedja 0 Comments
    [ID] - The Art of Chocolate Making

    PASSION berbincang dengan pendiri Pod Bali ,Toby Garritt, tentang pabrik cokelat barunya serta pendapatnya tentang industry cokelat di Indonesia.

    Banyak hal telah berubah sejak Pod Origin membuka pintunya sebagai pabrik cokelat dan cafe di Desa Carang Sari, sebelah barat Sangeh Monkey Forest, lima tahun silam. Kini, ia telah menjadi salah satu destinasi utama di area tersebut, menarik banyak pengunjung dari seluruh dunia yang tertarik untuk memelajari cara pembuatan cokelat. Hutan tropis hijau yang mengelilingi pabrik tetap lestari. Begitu juga dengan dedikasi Pod dengan melibatkan pengadaan yang melibatkan petani cacao Bali dari daerah Badung dan Negara.


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  • 26/02/2018 - Eve Tedja 0 Comments
    The Art of Chocolate Making

    PASSION talks with Toby Garritt, the founder of Pod Bali about his new chocolate factory and his insight regarding Indonesia’s chocolate industry.

    A lot has changed when Pod Origin opened its door as a chocolate factory and café in Carang Sari Village, north of Sangeh Monkey Forest, five years ago. For once, it is now becoming the number one destination in the area, attracting visitors from all around the world to learn about chocolate making. Happily, the lush tropical landscape that surrounds the factory remains. And so does Pod’s dedication in sustainable sourcing that involve Bali’s local cacao farmers from Badung and Negara.


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  • 26/02/2018 - Aria Sankhyaadi 0 Comments
    Often Imitated, Never Duplicated

    Find out why Bakerzin, one of the first dessert cafés in Indonesia, is still one of the best.

    In 2000, the concept of dessert café may not sound familiar to us. Most of the restaurants in Indonesia was mostly owned by family and have one outlet for one brand. Boga Group is one of the first players in the food service industry that introduced the dessert café concept through Bakerzin in 2002. After that, the success story was followed by brands we all know and love, such as Sushi Tei, Pepper Lunch, Paradise Dynasty, Paradise Inn, Shaburi, Kintan, Onokabe, Master Wok, and the latest one, Putu Made.


    Since the opening of the first Bakerzin, a franchise brand from Singapore, in Cilandak Town Square, the brand managed to maintain its position as one of the leader in the dessert café category. Of course, it’s not an easy task, Bakerzin do it by continuously challenging itself through new menus that come every 3 months.
    The most interesting one is their collaboration with Valrhona, The Tales of Valrhona Schokolade in the last season. It’s widely known that Valrhona is very selective in selecting partners for collaboration. The fact that Bakerzin is one of them speaks volume.

    When you want real taste of chocolate, the classic cake such as Chocolate Amer is an all time favorite. It has the gentle, soft and spongy texture with that melt-in-mouth sensation, but makes no mistake, it packs intense, punchy chocolate flavor with just the right amount of bitterness to please chocolate lovers.

    Since its inception in 2002, Bakerzin introduced us to Warm Chocolate Cake that is often imitated by other dessert cafes, but never quite replicated. With only one bite, you can tell Boga Group’s commitment of using the finest ingredients, in this case, the chocolate. It made us believe that the fanciest baking technique in the world can never replace quality ingredients.

    Make no mistake, Bakerzin also offers Chocolate Souffle, the kind of dessert that requires meticulous preparation in order for to make the soufflé rise. Again, the chocolate is the main star in these 3 dessert dishes. If you crave for chocolate, but you also want something fruity, Framboise Lactee is for you.

    If slice cake is not enough, Bakerzin also offers 2 of the most favorite chocolate drink: Hot Chocolate and Café Mocha. Both drink features Malongo cocoa powder with 50% cocoa content from France. Café Mocha is the perfect example of Jamie Oliver’s word, “coffee and chocolate are best friend”. It’s the mature kind of chocolate drink, there’s no turning back to your regular chocolate after a cup.

    What’s Next?
    As mentioned before, Bakerzin always offers something new every 3 months. However, after introducing The Tales of Valrhona Schokolade in November 2017, it’s quite difficult to imagine anything bigger. People know Bakerzin as dessert café that also serves western cuisine, however in February 2018, Bakerzin will also introduce local and Thai cuisines into the regular menu.

    2018 will also become a busy year for Boga Group. After having over 100 outlets in Indonesia through various brands, Boga will add a new Bakerzin outlet in South Jakarta, and a new brand of restaurant that will feature katsu dishes.

    For most F&B brands, the past few years have been quite tough, but they can’t stop Boga Group from having positive growth. Actually it’s not too surprising, if you know how to maintain your standard quality, just like what Boga do.


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  • 30/01/2018 0 Comments
    Sunday Afternoon

    Prego’s FunDay Family Brunch is offering tasty Italian cuisine and a whole lot of fun for the whole family. 

    Bright colorful balloons are floating from the chairs when I arrive at Prego on a sunny Sunday afternoon. Young families with their excited children are at ease in the spacious restaurant. A magician is hard at work and constantly being surrounded by children who make all sort of requests, from poodle balloons to a little show of magic.


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  • 30/01/2018 0 Comments
    [ID] - Sunday Afternoon

    Prego’s FunDay Family Brunch menawarkan sajian masakan Italia yang lezat sekaligus waktu yang menyenangkan untuk seluruh anggota keluarga.

    Balon-balon berwarna cerita mengambang dari tempatnya diikat di kursi saat saya tiba di Prego pada hari Minggu yang cerah. Keluarga-keluarga muda dengan anak-anak mereka yang kegirangan tengah bersantai di restauran yang luas. Seorang pesulap tengah bekerja keras dan senantiasa dikelilingi oleh anak-anak yang membuat berbagai macam permintaan kepadanya, dari balon berbentuk anjing pudel hingga pertunjukkan sulap.

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  • 30/01/2018 0 Comments
    Italian with a View

    Tasting the flavour of authentic Italian cuisine at Bene Italian Kitchen. 

    Pasta is the backbone of Italian cuisine. That sort of thinking prompted executive chef Rossano Renzelli to dedicate his time in making sure that only the freshest pasta is served at Bene. “We make 14 different kind of pasta,” says the Roman native who has worked his magic in the kitchen since Bene opened five years ago. Bucatini, rigatoni, fettuccine, spaghetti, linguini, and many more are produced every day in the industrious kitchen.

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  • 30/01/2018 0 Comments
    [ID] - Italian with a View

    Mencicipi cita rasa otentik Italia di Bene Italian Kitchen.

    Pasta adalah tulang punggung masakan Italia. Pemikiran itu yang mendorong executive chef Rossano Renzelli untuk mendedikasikan waktunya agar hanya pasta terbaiklah yang disajikan di Bene. “Kami membuat 14 jenis pasta yang berbeda,” ungkap pria Roma yang telah meracik makanan dengan sentuhan ajaibnya di Bene sejak restauran itu buka lima tahun yang lalu. Bucatini, rigatoni, fettuccine, spaghetti, linguini, dan masih banyak lagi kini diproduksi tiap hari di dapur yang maha sibuk.

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  • 30/01/2018 - Rian Farisa 0 Comments
    [ID] - STANDING TALL AGAINST THE TEST OF TIME

    Sebelas tahun dan terus berlanjut, restoran ini senantiasa berdiri kokoh sejak awal berdirinya. Inilah Rosso, wakil terhormat dari Jakarta untuk kuliner papan atas negeri Italia. 


    Kita hidup pada sebuah zaman dimana masakan modern diciptakan dari sebuah kreativitas, bahan-bahan berkualitas, serta presentasi rumit telah begitu memesona masyarakat. Bagian yang juga menarik adalah di zaman ini ternyata gerakan-gerakan yang mempromosikan kuliner tradisional juga semakin mendapatkan ruang berekspresi.

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  • 30/01/2018 - Rian Farisa 0 Comments
    STANDING TALL AGAINST THE TEST OF TIME

    Eleven years and counting, still standing tall as ever. Meet Rosso, the envoy of high-end Italian dining from Jakarta. 

    We live in an era when contemporary cuisine based on creativity, quality ingredients, and delicate presentations has taken the society by storm. The interesting part is at the same time, the movement to promote local values from traditional cuisines are also gaining prominence.


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  • 08/01/2018 - Eve Tedja 0 Comments
    A Modern Classic

    PASSION heads to Kunyit Restaurant at The Anvaya Beach Resort to taste its Balinese classic signature dishes. 


    I can’t think of a better place to dine, relax, and people watching in Tuban than the elegantly furnished Kunyit Restaurant. Elevated from the street, the Balinese and Indonesian restaurant provides a nice al fresco experience despite being in the heart of the hustle and bustle of Kuta. The Bali Aga inspired contemporary decor is a delight to the eyes, while the seating arrangements provide enough intimate space for romantic or group dinner.

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  • 08/01/2018 - Eve Tedja 0 Comments
    [ID] - A Modern Classic

    PASSION berkunjung ke Kunyit Restaurant di The Anvaya Beach Resort untuk merasakan hidangan klasik khas Bali.


    Saya tidak dapat memikirkan tempat yang lebih sesuai untuk makan, bersantai, dan mengamati orang berjalan lewat di daerah Tuban selain di Kunyit Restaurant yang didesain dengan elegan. Terletak sedikit lebih tinggi dari jalan, restauran yang menyajikan masakan Bali dan Indonesia ini memberikan pengalaman al fresco yang menyenangkan meskipun berada tepat di tengah Kuta yang padat. Dekorasi kontemporer yang terinspirasi dari budaya Bali Aga sungguh indah dipandang, sementara pengaturan area duduknya memberikan privasi ruang yang bersahabat untuk acara makan romantis maupun berkelompok.


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  • 08/01/2018 - Eve Tedja 0 Comments
    [ID] - In a Class of Its Own

    PASSION mengunjungi BLANCO par Mandif di Ubud dan mencicipi usahanya dalam membawa makanan Indonesia ke perbatasan yang baru.


    Sejak buka pada tahun 2015 sebagai tujuan destinasi fine dining, BLANCO par Mandif baru saja selesai menambah kapasitas restaurannya. Berlalu sudah masa dimana BLANCO par Mandif adalah sebuah pengalaman intim yang hanya bisa memuat 10 orang di dapur terbukanya yang terkenal. Sebagai gantinya adalah restaurant yang lebih elegan serta dapat mengakomodasi 20 orang. Berlokasi di dalam Blanco Renaissance Museum, saya langsung merasa memasuki dunia yang berbeda saat tiba di area bar sekaligus pintu masuk yang gelap dan dramatis.

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  • 08/01/2018 - Eve Tedja 0 Comments
    In a Class of Its Own

    PASSION revisits BLANCO par Mandif in Ubud and discover its attempt in bringing Indonesian cuisine into a new frontier.


    Firmly establishing itself as a fine dining destination since opening its door in 2015, BLANCO par Mandif recently upgraded the restaurant. Gone were the days when BLANCO par Mandif was an intimate experience where only ten people could sit and dine at its famous open kitchen. In its place, an elegant and refined sibling for twenty is taking over. Located on the ground of Blanco Renaissance Museum , I immediately feel transported into another realm as soon as I enter the dark dramatic bar which is also the entrance.


    I am glad to report that impeccable service remains at the heart of the restaurant. Sitting at one of the restaurant’s best spot overlooking the Campuhan bridge, I am enjoying the serenity that engulfs me. Created by Indonesia’s leading gastronomic chef and restaurateur, Mandif Warokka, the restaurant is a tribute to Indonesian flavour and heritage. Warokka’s perfectionist approach and deep love gives birth to an intense reinterpretation of Indonesian flavours and creative innovation which despite being audaciously modern in presentation, remains rooted in traditional cooking technique.


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  • 08/01/2018 - Aria Sankhyaadi 0 Comments
    [ID] - Discovering Indonesia’s Hidden Gems

    Pengalaman dining di Nusa Gastronomy mirip dengan menonton film Christopher Nolan: Anda menikmatinya dan merasa lebih pandai meski tidak terlalu memahami apa yang sebenarnya terjadi. Akui sajalah, meski Anda dapat menikmati Inception (2010), Anda tidak mungkin bisa memahami keseluruhan konsep mengenai pencurian rahasia dari alam bawah sadar yang dibahas di film itu dalam sekali tonton. Kemudian setelah beberapa kali menonton ulang, banyak hal mulai menjadi masuk akal dan menjadi momen, “Aha!” Ini terjadi juga di banyak film Nolan yang lain seperti Interstellar (2014) dan Dunkirk (2017). 


    Jika Anda pernah menonton film-film tersebut, kira-kira seperti itulah perasaan kami setelah dining di Nusa Gastronomy. Ada begitu banyak nama-nama makanan Indonesia yang terdengar aneh seperti sambal tempoyak, kambing nilomang, jamur pelawan. Nusa menunjukkan bahwa kekayaan kuliner Indonesia tidak hanya sebatas rendang dan nasi goreng. Ada banyak makanan legendaris daerah yang belum pernah mendapat panggung, bahkan untuk skala nasional. Nusa mengangkat makanan-makanan tersebut beserta cerita dibaliknya. Di sini mereka menyebutnya sebagai “an edible story of Indonesia.”

    Setidaknya ada dua hal umum yang kerap kami temui ketika sebuah restoran mengusung konsep masakan Indonesia. Pertama adalah terlalu berpaku pada tradisi sehingga terasa sekaligus terlihat membosankan dan sulit diterima oleh palate internasional, sementara yang kedua adalah melangkah terlalu jauh ke depan dengan penggunaan teknik masak modern sehingga mengabaikan rasa asli masakan tersebut. Satu hal yang kami kagumi dari Nusa Gastronomy adalah kemampuan Chef Ragil Imam Wibowo, sang chef owner, untuk mengaplikasikan teknik masak dan presentasi kontemporer tanpa mengabaikan rasa asli dari masakan tradisional tersebut.


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  • 08/01/2018 - Aria Sankhyaadi 0 Comments
    Discovering Indonesia’s Hidden Gems

    Dining experience in Nusa Gastronomy is similar to watching Christopher Nolan’s movie: you enjoy the ride and feel smarter, even though you don’ really understand what’s going on.


    Admit it, although you enjoyed Inception (2010), you can’t really understand the concept of stealing secrets from people’s sub consciousness as discussed in the movie in screening. And then after watching it for the next time, things started to make sense and would give you the, “Aha!” moment It also happened in Nolan’s movies such as Interstellar (2014) and Dunkirk (2017).


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  • 24/11/2017 - Eve Tedja 0 Comments
    Invitation to Provence

    Experiencing the rustic charm of French and Mediterranean cuisine at Kebun Bistro.


    The long and busy street of Hanoman is renowned for being the location of several impressive eateries. Kebun Bistro is one of them. Since opening its door five years ago, the casual restaurant continues to flourish and expand. The space gets wider, accommodating its growing and loyal customers’ needs. As we arrive at the bistro, the sun was just recently set and Ubud is getting slowly back to being the village it once was. Visiting Kebun Bistro requires an empty schedule because the ambience will seduces its visitors to sit back and linger. No visit here should ever be rushed. 


    There are the green potted plants and hanging vines, earth coloured walls and curvaceous iron lattice on the window. The feeling of being in an open-air veranda of somebody’s house in a small town of France is made even more real with the mismatched chairs made of wood and rattan as well as the square white marble table tops. 


    The menu is taking its inspiration from Provençal cuisine which relies heavily on the use of olive oil, fresh herbs, sun-kissed vegetables, and influenced by the light Mediterranean cuisine. I am glad to report that its wine cellar is stocked with fine wine collections from France, South America, Australia, and beyond. My starter arrives right after I finished my first glass of a fruity Shiraz. A bowlful of escargot submerged in a luxurious bath of butter, oil and the fragrant chopped parsley is a morsel of good life. The snails are plump and juicy while the accompanying baguette is crusty. In no time at all, what remains on the plate is just crumbs. 


    Sharing the grilled sesame tuna salad with my friend turns out to be a good idea since the portion is quite generous. The tuna is medium rare and goes very well with the citrus dressing, sun-kissed tomatoes, avocado, black olives, rucola, and asparagus. It makes a nice change after the flavourful escargot.


    As the quintessential French dish, the duck confit also meets my expectation. It is meltingly tender and can be easily pulled from the bone as a result of slowly being cooked in the oven for three hours. The accompanying green peppercorn sauce adds a depth and soft heat into the dish. 


    We close the meal with the mille-feuille. The sweet vanilla custard cream and layers of crispy pastry is served with a slightly sour strawberry coulis. All in all, it was a balanced and beautifully presented dessert. A romantic French chanson is playing in the background and we finally agree on another glass of Chilean Chardonnay before slowly making our way home. An evening well spent is one with good wine and good food. Fortunately, tonight we have both.


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  • 24/11/2017 - Eve Tedja 0 Comments
    Reinventing Flavours

    PASSION revisits CasCades Restaurant and talks to the man behind the exciting culinary endeavour which constantly raising the bar.


    I am following Nic Vanderbeeken into the large green house at the garden of Viceroy Bali. For the last one year, the Belgian executive chef has been working intensively with a team of gardeners in growing various vegetables and herbs for the menu at CasCades Restaurant. Brussel sprouts, kolhrabi, fennel, watercress, tarragon, and cheerful edible flowers are growing exuberantly on white aquaponic pipes. Heirloom seeds from Indonesia and other countries are making their way to this particular green house where constant experimentations and trials are conducted to get the best possible produce.


    “The way I see it, when our garden improves so does our kitchen and ultimately, our menu,” claims Vanderbeeken who is reinventing a new degustation menu based on the locally grown produce and his flavour database of European upbringing. The last time I saw and tasted his creation, Vanderbeeken was intent on combining French cooking technique with Indonesian flavours. And he was remarkably apt at it, undoubtedly influenced by his vast experiences in several Michelin starred restaurants in France, Netherlands and Belgium. Never the one who shies away from challenges, he has pioneered and actively involved in Cascades’ legendary Four Hand Chef Collaboration where internationally acclaimed chefs are invited to cook and co-hosted exclusive dining events at the restaurant.


    Today, I signed up for the new six course degustation menu. While sipping my Cosmopolitan and enjoying the romantic view of the green valley, my first dish is served on the table. True to its name, the fit for royalty Royal Tartar is a magnificent study of flavours. The raw cubed wagyu beef is delicately plated in the form of a ring and on the top is the precariously perched garden made of thinly sliced celery, quail egg, pickled cucumber, fresh onion, crispy baby potato, and delightfully crunchy pumpkin ginger meringue. It pleasantly bursts in my mouth, a rounded aria of acidulous sweetness and a rich taste of black garlic mayonnaise in the raw beef. It is a truly solid start.


    A dramatically plated marinated seared octopus on a bed of fennel is next. Dotted with sweet potato sauce and lemon basil sauce, the dish is also visually enhanced with squid ink coral tuile and artfully placed fennel flower. The octopus is perfectly cooked and when I dip it into the mixture of sauces, a flood of new flavour is born. Vanderbeeken sneakily adds curry into the sauce and the result of this savoury and fragrant affair is nothing short of extraordinary.


    The Beef Cheek Rendang is a nod to Indonesian flavour and a clever take on the traditional French braised version. The chubby cheeks are delightful and mixing it in a spoonful of its accompanying pickled vegetable, aromatic Thai inspired tom kha soup emulsion, and Padang’s green chili sambal is the most exquisite treat I have given myself in a while. At this point, Vanderbeeken’s creation has completely blown me away. Then, he comes with the Quail Wellington. Aesthetically, it is the simplest from the others but a bite of perfectly rolled foie gras, morel mushroom and quail dipped in the truffle sauce later, I come to the conclusion that it is nothing but simple. This ravishing dish cemented my absolute faith in CasCades and its worldly refined direction.


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  • 24/11/2017 - Aria Sankhyaadi 0 Comments
    [ID] - Reviving The Ancient Fermentation Method

    Kami paham, sulit sekali menemukan roti Eropa otentik di Jakarta, namun kabar baiknya, Eric Kayser hadir di Jakarta. Eric memiliki DNA roti sejak ia lahir di keluarga baker. Ia bergabung dengan The Compagnons du Devoir (perkumpulan seniman tradisional) sejak usia muda, dengan bertujuan untuk membantu mengabadikan metode tradisional dan menumbuhkan passionnya sendiri untuk membagi pengetahuan dan keahliannya. Setelah terlatih sebagai pendidik, Eric Kayser akhirnya memutuskan untuk membangun perusahaan sendiri sehingga ia memiliki tempat untuk mengkomunikasikan visi uniknya, Perusahaan ini kemudian hadir di banyak negara


    Sebuah momen kunci dalam karirnya tiba pada tahun 1994 lewat penemuan Fermentolevain, sebuah mesin revolusioner yang mampu menjaga cairan leavening di temperature yang tepat, sehingga memudahkan dalam aplikasi. Ini memungkinkan Eric untuk memenuhi ambisinya membuat roti dengan bagian tengah yang creamy, serat yang khas, memiliki aroma buah kering, dan shelf life yang luar biasa.


    Yang membedakan Eric Kayser dari yang lain adalah komitmennya untuk menggunakan agen leavening alami di produk roti dan pastrynya. Agen fermentasi ini terhubung langsung dengan sejarah roti. Ini adalah campuran air, terigu, dan gula (dalam kasus Eric Kayser, madu) yang kemudian didinginkan dan diberi waktu resting. Ini adalah agen fermentasi pertama yang digunakan dalam produksi roti, sehingga tidak mengejutkan jika agen ini hanya berisikan bahan alami.


    Namun teknik ini tidak digunakan lagi di abad ke-20 dan digantikan oleh ragi, yang aplikasinya lebih mudah dan mampu membuat roti mengembang lebih cepat dan besar. Namun, penggunaan ragi memiliki kekurangan, shelf lifenya lebih singkat dan rasanya tidak memiliki aroma khas roti yang dibuat dengan agen leavening.


    Ini adalah alasan mengapa Eric Kayser bersikukuh untuk menghidupkan kembali proses yang telah teruji waktu ini, dan ini alasan agen leavening tersebut digunakan di semua produk roti, croissant, brioche dan produk lainnya. Teknik fermentasi ini terutama berguna untuk meningkatan kesadaran akan hidup sehat dan mampu membuat produk yang lebih gampang dicerna oleh tubuh manusia, dan rasanya juga enak.


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  • 24/11/2017 - Aria Sankhyaadi 0 Comments
    Reviving The Ancient Fermentation Method

    Eric Kayser was born into a family of bakers. He has bread in his DNA. He joined the Compagnons du Devoir (a traditional craftsmen’s guild) at a young age, helping to perpetuate traditional methods and cultivating his own passion for passing on his knowledge and skills. Having plied his trade as an educator, Eric Kayser decided set up his own company, giving him an outlet to communicate his unique vision. The company now boasts an extensive international presence.


    A key moment came in 1994 with the invention of the Fermentolevain, a revolutionary machine that keeps liquid leavening agent at just the right temperature, making it easier to work with. This enabled Eric Kayser to pursue his ambition of creating bread with a creamy center, distinctive grain, dried fruit flavors and an excellent shelf-life. 


    What sets Eric Kayser apart from the rest is his commitment to using natural leavening agent in his breads and pastries. This fermentation agent is inextricably linked with the history of bread. It is a mixture of water, flour and sugars (honey, in the case of Eric Kayser) which is then chilled and allowed to rest. It was the first such agent to be used in bread production, so it comes as no surprise that it contains only natural ingredients.


    Yet it fell largely out of favor in the 20th century and was replaced by yeast, which is easier to manage and produces fast-rising, high-volume bread. However, the use of yeast results in bread that has a shorter shelf-life and a less distinctive flavor than bread made with a leavening agent.


    This is the main reason why Eric Kayser set about reviving this time-honored process, and why a leavening agent is now used in all our breads, croissants, brioches and other products. This fermentation technique is particularly beneficial at a time of increasing health-consciousness, delivering products that the human body is better able to digest and tolerate, and they taste great, too.


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  • 24/11/2017 - Aria Sankhyaadi 0 Comments
    [ID] - Staying True to the Roots

    Berbeda dengan restoran sejenis yang mengubah konsep menjadi fusion, Emilie tetap teguh pada masakan Perancis. Tentu saja, ini bukan jalan yang mudah, atau populer. “Sejujurnya, bisnis fine dining itu sangat sulit. Lihat saja; apakah ada restoran fine dining baru? Jika mudah dan sukses, tentu Anda akan melihat banyak pemain baru,” kata Wahjudi Rahardja, Chef Owner Emilie French Restaurant. Kata-katanya menjawab pertanyaan kami mengenai mengapa hanya ada sedikit resto yang masuk dalam genre ini. Di sisi lain, resto fine dining lain malah mengubah konsepnya menjadi casual atau fusion. Apa yang terjadi di scene fine dining ini?


    Sejak berdiri pada 2005, restoran milik keluarga ini telah berhasil mendapatkan banyak penghargaan; The Award of Excellence (2007) oleh majalah Wine Spectator (USA), kemudian diupgrade menjadi “Best of Award of Excellence” sejak 2013, masuk dalam jajaran salah satu restoran terbaik Asia Miele Guide 2009/2010, 2011/2012, dan penghargaan “Best French/Fine Dining Restaurant” dari banyak sekali majalah.


    Bertempat di Jalan Senopati yang tenar, cukup mudah untuk melewatkan kehadiran Emlie, selain dari signage dan light box kecil. “Saya lebih suka begini, tidak terlalu menonjol karena target market kami, kurang lebih bukan mass customer,” kata Wahjudi yang biasa dikenal dengan panggilan singkat, Yen. Meski dari luar tampak seperti rumah biasa di Jalan Senopati, bangunan sengaja dibangun ulang dan diperuntukkan untuk restoran oleh Jaya Ibrahim and Associates.



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  • 24/11/2017 - Aria Sankhyaadi 0 Comments
    Staying True to the Roots

    Unlike many of its colleagues who went fusion, Emilie sticks to its French roots. And of course it’s not an easy path, nor a popular one.


    “Realistically speaking, fine dining business is very difficult. Take a look around; do we have any new fine dining restaurants? If it’s easy and successful, you’ll see many new ones coming up,” said Wahjudi Rahardja, Chef Owner of Emilie French Restaurant. His words clearly answered our question of why there’s so few restaurants belongs in this genre. On the other hand, we have some fine dining restaurants went casual or fusion. What actually happened in this fine dining scene?


    Since established in 2005, the family owned restaurant has won many awards; such as The Award of Excellence (2007) by Wine Spectator Magazine (USA), upgraded to “Best of Award of Excellence” since 2013, listed as one of Asia’s Finest Restaurants by the Miele Guide 2009/2010, 2011/2012, and numerous “Best French/Fine Dining Restaurant” from various magazines. 


    Located in the famous Jalan Senopati, it’s quite easy to miss Emilie’s presence, apart from the signage and small light box. “I prefer it this way, not too flashy because our target market, more or less, is not mass customers,” said Wahjudi who is also known as, simply, Yen. Even though it looks just like regular houses in Senopati, the building was actually designed by Jaya Ibrahim and Associates, specifically for restaurant purpose.


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  • 24/11/2017 - Aria Sankhyaadi 0 Comments
    [ID] - Behind The Silverware

    Baik klasik atau kontemporer, Amuz merupakan tempat pilihan saat Anda menginginkan resto fine dining Perancis. Sudah lebih dari 6 tahun sejak kunjungan terakhir saya ke Amuz, salah satu resto fine dining terbaik di Jakarta. Amuz telah memenangkan berbagai penghargaan bergengsi, seperti Hospitality Platinum Award Indonesia di berbagai seri dan tahun dan Award of Excellence dari majalah Wine Spectator selama 5 tahun berturut-turut. Selain sedikit perubahan di interior, tempat, konsep dan atmosfir di Amuz tetap sama seperti tahun-tahun sebelumnya. Perbedaan paling mencolok justru tampak di menu seasonal terbaru dan penampilan Gilles Marx (Chef Founder Amuz) yang memutuskan untuk menumbuhkan jenggot, Passion mungkin salah satu media pertama yang menampilkan foto terbaru Gilles.



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  • 24/11/2017 - Aria Sankhyaadi 0 Comments
    Behind The Silverware

    It’s been over 6 years since my last visit to Amuz, one of the best French fine dining restaurants in Jakarta, if not the best. The facts that Amuz has won numerous prestigious awards, such as Hospitality Platinum Award Indonesia with variants of series and years and Wine Spectator Award of Excellence for 5 years in a row, speak volume. Apart from some minor interior changes (and some new international awards), the place, the concept, and the atmosphere don’t show any differences from years ago. The most notable changes actually comes from the new seasonal menu and Gilles Marx’s (Amuz’s Chef Founder) appearance who decided to grew some beard, and Passion is probably the first media to feature Gilles’ new look.



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  • 24/11/2017 - Aria Sankhyaadi 0 Comments
    The Proper Hot Chocolate

    You’ve heard this saying somewhere, “stop trying to make everybody happy, you aren’t chocolate.”


    Even though it’s hard to deny that fact, we found it weird to know that there are so few chocolate cafes even though Indonesia is widely known as the third cacao producer and exporter in the world. The truth is, chocolate café is not as popular as coffee shop. It’s even surprisingly rare to have chocolate café that serves proper hot chocolate.


    We can’t blame you if you assume hot chocolate is chocolate drink made of instant chocolate powder like you’ve had in many of the coffee shops. However, a true hot chocolate that is made out of melted chocolate with steamed fresh milk is surprisingly rare. Fortunately, it took no chocolate expert to tell the difference between the instant powder and the real stuff. From the texture, the intensity and the complexity of the flavor, you’d probably wondering why we don’t have more places serving this kind of goodness? Thank God, we found Kakolait in BSD, Tangerang, one of the fastest developing regions in Jabodetabek.


    Kakolait actually has 8 owners, and 6 of them went to college in Sydney, Australia. “We missed Sydney’s atmosphere and we haven’t found a good hot chocolate drink in Jakarta. Finally, we decided to open up a café with proper hot chocolate. We have wider target audience, kids to the elders are enjoying Kakolait,” said Pricillia Pranata, one of Kakolait’s owners.


    Classic Hot Chocolate is probably Kakolait’s most iconic drink, and as always, opt for the dark one instead of milk. It’s some sort of an unwritten rule for any chocolate lovers, in case you’re wondering. If you enjoy it, you might want to take a step further by ordering the Thick Hot Chocolate. It’s probably the most intense hot chocolate we’ve had with very heavy texture that you can’t find in any other places.


    When it’s hot outside, you can always pick Ice Chocolate. Although not as intense as the hot counterpart due to the ice cube, the menu still packs some serious intensity. Apart from any chocolate-based drinks, the place also serves other drinks such as milk shake, coffee, and tea. Kakolait also has some waffle menu to accompany their drinks.


    If you’ve tried the Classic Hot Chocolate, most probably you won’t see hot chocolate the same way as you were before. Kakolait has set the new standard of hot chocolate and we predict that sooner or later, more people will demand such quality hot chocolate in their favorite coffee shops. The good news is, we’ll see Kakolait’s new outlet coming up in Jakarta in near future.


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  • 19/10/2017 - Eve Tedja 0 Comments
    The Art of Grilling

    Exploring the flavour of authentic Japanese Teppanyaki buffet at Edogin is a treat that one must not miss at The Mulia, Nusa Dua, Bali.


    Teppanyaki cooking has an interesting background history. It began in Japan in the 1900s with meals being prepared on a small grill within family households until a teppanyaki style restaurant named Misono opened its first branch on 1945. However, the skilled manoeuvres received lukewarm response from the locals and instead, found popularity with the GIs who were stationed in Japan. They took it excitedly back to the States and the ostentatious teppanyaki cooking style reminds popular until today despite being a far cry from its authentic Japanese beginning.


    When we arrive at Edogin, two chefs are quietly manning the two hot iron griddles in the middle of the room. On a counter around them, a smorgasbord of premium Wagyu beef cuts and seafood bounties are displayed neatly. In between the juicy pink shrimps and pudgy scallops, there are fine selection of cooked Japanese delights such as unagi kamameshi, miso soup, and baked Hokkaido oysters. While on the far corner of the room, a dedicated appetizer counter is topped with vegetables, beautiful sashimi cuts, and sushi. Next to it, there is a self-service soba station and crispy selection of kushiage or deep fried skewers and vegetable. At the dessert station, a Japanese chef is skilfully rolling teppanyaki ice cream for excited little children. 


    The fragrant aroma of seared beef and the teppanyaki knife actions always excites me. True to its authentic Japanese root and contrary to what everyone thinks of the fiery action packed teppanyaki experience, Edogin’s way of grilling is calm and assured. Here, the chefs work effectively and skilfully, dicing the meat without too much flair, nor drama. After filling my plate with the marbled tenderloin and ask the chef to cook them medium rare, I go back to my table and order a hot sake to keep me and my dining partner company. 


    The earthy colours of the interior and low lighting create intimacy. Despite the large number of diners on every Thursday to Saturday when the buffet is served, everything is done in a hushed and gentle manner. Elegantly attired waiters in gold kimono inspired uniform is offering me another options of freshly prepared dishes from the kitchen. “We have various skewers, tempura, ramen, udon, soba, and donburi,” explains the waiter. Then, two plates of grilled beef, mushroom, vegetable, scallop, and shrimps arrive at our table. Each and every piece is cooked to perfection. That is the thing I appreciate the most about Japanese cuisine. It is deceptively simple but the precise technique and the use of ingredients that it takes before a dish is served is nothing but perfection.


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  • 14/10/2017 - Edwin Pangestu 0 Comments
    The Height of Nikkei Cuisine

    It is always exciting to see the acculturation process of two different cultures. It’s even more exciting if it’s served on a dish, at the highest restaurant in Indonesia.


    If you grow up in the 80’s to 90’s, you must be familiar with the word “Henshin” (literally mean “transform”). It’s the exact word screamed by Kamen Riders, from Takeshi Hongo (Kamen Rider Ichigo) to Kotaro Minami (Kamen Rider Black) and beyond, whenever they transform from the human form to the mighty Kamen Rider. The Westin Jakarta uses the catchy, edgy, and meaningful name to describe the transformation from their rather conservative lobby from ground floor to the more contemporary Henshin, located on floor 67-69.

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  • 09/10/2017 - Eve Tedja 0 Comments
    A House Party

    We pay a visit to The Sayan House in Ubud and its sensual flavour of Japanese Latin fusion.


    The house is hidden from the main road. It is hidden for a good reason, for when we enter the restaurant through its large open-kitchen, we are welcomed by the lush green view of the famous Sayan Gorge. There is an intimate living and dining room near the kitchen but the restaurant’s open-air favourite dining spot on the lower ground is where we are heading for our group lunch. The house is a mixture of colonial and tropical aesthetic, resulting in a romantic ambience with an understated elegance. A well-designed pond with river stones runs through the garden, reminding me with the calmness provided by a Japanese garden. Coming here feels like visiting the house of your worldly, well-travelled and well-to-do neighbour, so to speak. 


    Making use of the superb view, the restaurant recently added The Sunset Bar on the far corner of the garden. It makes a nice spot to watch the sun goes down with a glass of martini such as the Machu Matilda. The freshness of the basil, tamarillo and lime goes refreshingly well with the vodka and ginger ale. Ubud sure needs more places for sunset viewing especially when it comes with a solid cocktail creation and a fine collection of Japanese whiskey such as this one. 


    The concept of marrying Japanese cuisine with South American flavour is not as contradictory as it seems. It’s been done for a long time especially in the Latin continent where there is a significant Japanese population. Chef Yuki Tagami have had his share of experiences in this sexy fusion and translated it well into the menu at The Sayan House. When our Sashimi Gunkan arrives on the table, the combination of salmon, guacamole, jalapeno and soy ginger dressing immediately creates uproar. The same ruckus happens again when Los de Wayan, a tempe tempura tacos with a tasty home-made sauce is served and eaten in no time. The flavour is simple and straight forward. Another bold fusion of a Latin –Nippon love affair like ceviche, tempura with chimichuri sauce or ensalada maya is also available to be tasted. 


    Lastly, we devour the aesthetically pleasing Bento Box. It is a vibrant assortment of chicken salad, salmon sushi roll, wasabi mashed potato, chicken croquette, tofu salad, and a tasty teriyaki chicken. It is quite fulfilling and comes with a choice of dessert. The Churros y Horchata closes our long lunch with its unique taste of Horchata ice cream. Inspired by the popular Central American rice based drink, the coldness of the ice cream complemented the hot and crispy texture of the churros nicely. 


    Intimate, private, and inviting are some of the words to describe this house by the gorge. However, ultimately the reason to come and pay it a visit is to enjoy the tasty and unique flavour that is not quite east or west but something entirely new and exciting.


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  • 05/10/2017 0 Comments
    [ID] - The World’s Seventh Brewer

    Ketika seseorang yang mendapat peringkat ke-7 dalam kejuaraan World Brewers Cup menawarkan Anda kopi, Anda tidak mungkin menolaknya! Espresso atau latte adalah pilihan menarik, tetapi secangkir kopi filter V60 adalah pilihan yang jelas bagi saya untuk mengetahui mengapa Harison Chandra, salah satu pemilik Ottoman’s Coffee Brewers, berhasil menjuarai IBRC (Indonesian Brewers Cup) 2017 dan berhasil menduduki peringkat 7 dunia di World Brewers Cup. 


    Faktanya, ini adalah pencapaian terbaik Indonesia setelah sebelumnya selalu kesulitan untuk menembus 10 besar dunia, baik untuk kategori barista, brewers, latte art, mau pun cup taster. Hal ini pula yang membawa kami pada Ottoman’s Coffee Brewers.

    “Mau kopi yang seperti apa?” tanya Harison. “Saya sedang ingin sesuatu yang bright dan tidak pahit,” jawab saya. Meski sempat ragu pada penggunaan temperatur yang sangat tinggi (98o C), ternyata kekhawatiran itu tidak terbukti. Kopi Ethiopia Kelloo dari Smoking Barrels (roaster) terasa begitu bright dengan aroma citrus, floral, dengan ending yang sweet. Saya bahkan tidak perlu berusaha terlalu keras untuk memahami aroma apa saja di secangkir kopi tersebut.

    Kebetulan, Harison memiliki selera yang mirip dengan saya soal kopi. “Saya suka kopi yang bright, bitterness is a big no no for me! Banyak orang bikin kopi hanya memperhatikan soal body dan sweetness, that’s what I call one-dimensional coffee. Untuk kopi filter, first rulenya adalah harus clear, very clear and clean sehingga kita dapat mendapatkan notesnya secara cepat dan mudah. Sama seperti ketika Anda minum jus jeruk, seketika Anda langsung tahu itu jeruk kan?” jelas Harison.

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  • 05/10/2017 - Aria Sankhyaadi 0 Comments
    The World’s Seventh Brewer

    When someone who is ranked 7th in the World Brewers Cup offered you a cup of coffee, you don’t say no!

    Espresso or latte are interesting options, but that afternoon, a cup of V60 filter coffee would be obvious for me to understand why Harison Chandra, one of Ottoman’s owners, won the IBRC (Indonesian Brewers Cup) 2017 and managed to get the 7th seat in World Brewers Cup. In fact, this is the best achievement for Indonesia after having difficulties in getting to the world’s top 10 for any coffee categories, from barista, brewers, latte art, or cup taster. This is what leads us to Ottoman’s Coffee Brewers.


    “What sort of bean would you like?” asked Harison. “I want something bright, with no bitterness,” I answered. At first, I was doubtful with the use of high temperature (98oC), after a sip, I realized my concern was pointless. The Ethiopia Kelloo bean from Smoking Barrels (roaster) tasted so bright with citrus, floral notes and sweet after taste. I didn’t even have to try too hard to figure what’s going on in the cup.


    Fortunately, Harison share the similar taste preference as I do. “I like bright coffee, bitterness is a big no no for me! Most people only concerned about body and sweetness, that’s what I call one-dimensional coffee. For filter coffee, the first rule is it has to be clear, very clear and clean so we can quickly and easily gets the notes. It’s like when you’re drinking orange juice, you know right away that it’s orange, don’t you?” explained Harison.

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  • 26/09/2017 - Edwin Pangestu 0 Comments
    [ID] - The Spice Orchestra

    Masih ingat pelajaran sejarah di sekolah? Negara pertama yang menjajah Indonesia adalah Portugis dengan misi mereka 3G (Gold, Glory, Gospel). Konon harga rempah-rempah di Barat sangat tinggi, itulah mengapa mereka datang ke Indonesia. Sekarang, alasan mengapa kita dijajah menjadi alasan mengapa kita sangat bangga menjadi orang Indonesia. Berbeda dengan masakan western, masakan Indonesia sangat kaya rasa, berkat orkestrasi bumbu di atas makanan tradisional yang diturunkan dari leluhur kita. Berlokasi di tempat modern di area Menteng, Kaum Jakarta merupakan lokasi utama dari konsep restoran Indonesia dari Potato Head Family dan mempersembahkan berbagai pengalaman lifestyle pilihan yang menampilkan warisan kuliner dan budaya Indonesia dalam konteks yang baru dan modern. Kaum Jakarta adalah lokasi yang ketiga, setelah Hong Kong dan Bali.

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  • 26/09/2017 - Edwin Pangestu 0 Comments
    The Spice Orchestra

    It took only a night at Kaum to understand why The Portuguese traveled half the earth to Indonesia over 500 years ago.


    Remember our history lesson at school? The first country to colonialize Indonesia was Portuguese, along with their mission, 3G (Gold, Glory, Gospel). It is said that the spices’ price back then in the West were very expensive, and that’s exactly why they came to Indonesia. Now, the reason why we were colonialized became the reason why we’re very proud of being Indonesian. As opposed to western cuisine, Indonesian cuisine is very rich taste-wise, thanks to the orchestra of spices on the traditional dishes which were passed down from our ancestors. Housed in a modern space in Menteng, Kaum Jakarta is the flagship outlet of Potato Head Family’s Indonesian dining concept Kaum and presents curated lifestyle experiences that showcase Indonesia’s culinary and cultural heritage in a new, modern context. The Jakarta outlet is the third Kaum location, following Hong Kong and Bali.


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  • 22/09/2017 0 Comments
    A Weekend Tea Party

    Despite being partly hidden in Canggu, Yamuna Homemade Pastry is quietly garnering faithful followers since opening its door six months ago. Passion talks to the man behind the artisan dessert factory and finds out the driving force behind its success.


    Blink and you will miss it. The tiny pastry shop is located behind a carved door. You may think that you get into somebody’s yard when you step inside. Potted plants, trickling water fountain, leafy wide leaves, and cozy benches are scattered on the yard. Only when you venture further inside, will you find that there stands a small pastry shop with delightful sweet items on display. In the wall cabinet, neatly aligned tea selections and carefully curated tea pots are displayed.

    Yamuna has been a cult hit for the people in the know. When I Made Agus Pramana decided to quit his cruise ship career on 2013, he only knew one thing for certain. “Pastry is my passion. That’s all I want to do. I didn’t know what or how but I know it will involve having my own pastry shop,” says Pramana. And so he learned from the best. He went to study in France under Chef Serge Billet of La Villa des Chefs in Aix de Provence, the respected Le Cordon Bleu, and even following the legendary pastry course from Pierre Hermé. By the end of 2014, he has begun to receive delivery orders from friends and family.

    The response was very positive until he decided to open a pastry shop when the opportunity of a place comes up. With his other two assistants, he bakes, glazed, sugared, and garnishes their beautiful cakes daily. The minimalist look of their cakes belies the complexity underneath. Take the romantic appeal of Ispahan, for example. Inspired by Iran, the cake is made of white chocolate, raspberry and rose. It is glazed elegantly in a romantic heart shaped with an elegant rose petal on top.

    The Montaigne is another favourite. Inspired by the mountain, it is made of salted caramel, almond tart, chocolate mousse, and raspberry lava. The flavour of sweet and salty are complementing each other. Early Pillow will make tea lovers giddy with joy since it is inspired by the Earl Grey Tea. Their dedication in using only the best ingredients and careful artistry in each and every piece definitely paid off especially after watching the beeline in front of their door. Open only for weekends, Yamuna Homemade Pastry is certainly a special treat that you want to enjoy with your friend and special ones.

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  • 18/09/2017 - Eve Tedja 0 Comments
    All That Jazz

    Dinner is over and yet, you still don’t want the night to end. Luckily, there is now a jazz club that opens until late. There is something dark and secretively sexy about Paris Cat Jazz Club. As soon as you climb up the staircase, you will find a beautifully dark space for intimate time for two and a well-lit stage with a dedicated acoustic that will make any jazz aficionado happy. 


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  • 16/09/2017 - Rian Farisa 0 Comments
    THE FINEST FROM THE LABOR OF LOVE

    Sabrina Mustopo knew well that Indonesian cocoa has a lot of potential waiting to be further discovered. Her experience working with governments and international think tanks for agricultural matters brought her to a realization that improving the lives of the farmers will positively affect the cocoa industry and the nation’s economy. As we know it, our country is the third largest cocoa producer in the world but severely lacking when it comes to quality. 


    Together with her colleague Simon Wright, Kakoa was established in 2013 - which later rebranded as Krakakoa. The aim is to produce high quality Indonesian cocoa beans through sustainable farming methods and direct trade. Initially concentrated with plantations in Lampung; Krakakoa also partners with farmers from Bali, Kalimantan, and Sulawesi.


    Krakakoa starts by training the farmers on a two-month program before finally outfitting them with tools, guaranteeing a good buying price, and giving them the freedom to choose whomever they want to sell their cocoa beans to. This bring a sense of motivation and responsibility for the farmers to truly tend their crops, while at the same time improving their livelihood and the whole industry in general.


    Today, Krakakoa has a rich lineup of cacao-based products, from the single origins and flavored bars, to cacao nibs, drinking chocolates, and even cacao tea. The highlights from Krakakoa are the award-winning, signature single origin of 70% Sedayu Sumatra and 75% Saludengen Sulawesi bars. Additionally, the internationally recognized Academy of Chocolate from London also awarded their uniquely flavored chocolate bars such as the dark chocolate sea salt & pepper, the dark milk chocolate ginger, and the milk chocolate creamy coffee.


    Further pursuing their ideals to showcase quality chocolate from Indonesia for the world; Krakakoa has been partnering with F&B personas and establishments - in addition to displaying their lineups at gourmet retailers in Jakarta, Bali, Bandung, Surabaya, Tangerang, and as far as Singapore.

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  • 07/09/2017 - Eve Tedja 0 Comments
    A la Folie

    It is rare to find a restaurant who is dedicated in both their cooking and their pastry. Happily, we come to discover that the recently opened Folie Kitchen & Pâtisserie is doing both perfectly.


    One will unmistakably awed by the burst of tropical flowers on the wall at the entrance of Folie. After confirming to the charming host that we would like to sit outdoor, we walk to the long pastry counter where stacks of freshly baked flaky croissants, quiche, muffin, and cakes are lining up temptously. Remembering myself to spare some room for dessert, I ask my company to sit down in the nicely done blue booth. Behind us a photogenic soft pink wall is complementing the decor nicely while the breeze and soft bossanova is playing in the background.

    Folie is created by Stephane Simond, a French chef who is fascinated by Asian flavours. “My style of cooking is influenced by my upbringing and kitchen experiences. I believe to be a good chef, one must be creative and obsessed with food to the brink of madness. A la folie, as the French says. French cuisine is my root, it is rich and flavourful. But, I have worked, live, and love all of these tasty and spicy Asian dishes. Folie is the result of these two obsessions,”said Simond who used to cook for Michelin-starred restaurants, a globe-trotting Michelin team Formula 1, a resort in French West Indies, an award winning French restaurant in Jakarta, as well as leading the kitchen of Bali’s five-star resort. The chef himself is coming to our table and recommending us some dishes that we must try.

    I start with the Folie Caesar Salad. A decadent mixture of basil, anchovies, parmiggiano, yolk butter on croutons, and a satisfying crispy chicken skin. It is a solid start and definitely manage to raise our appetite. Nicoise Salad is also something that you should not miss for it is light and refreshing with its perfectly cooked tuna, vegetables, and lime dressing.

    Angel Hair Pasta Aglio e Olio are our mains since we have been hearing rave review about it. Being an aglio oglio fanatic that I am, I am curious to try Folie’s interpretation of the simple garlic and olive oil pasta. It turns out to be nothing like I expected. It is better. It is served in a mixture of garlic and pesto while being adorned by crispy pancetta and grilled king prawns. It is savoury and what I consider as an upscaling of the traditional aglio olio. We close our lunch with coffee and cakes, as we have promised ourselves.

    A spoonful of the sea salt crumble, dark chocolate, and walnut Brownie later, I think I can see why this new restaurant is gathering faithful followers by the day. “We want people to come back, for our pastry and our food, over and over again,” says Simond and that is exactly what will happen when you have tasted the food a la folie.


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  • 06/09/2017 - Edwin Pangestu 0 Comments
    Unmasking Pak Wawan

    The first official appearance of Kopi Pak Wawan was reported by TV station on a fund raising event for one of governor candidate in the last Jakarta’s election. Some people in the industry finally realized that the one behind Kopi Pak Wawan is actually someone familiar in coffee communities and competitions (as judge).

    The coffee roastery was started by Ronald Prasanto (an F&B consultant, coffee expert, also ex-owner of Ron’s Laboratory) and 4 other senior coffee people in the industry by the end of 2013, apparently you’ll have to find out yourself who they are.

    With its tagline “cheerful heart & addictive”, you have all the rights to assume that Kopi Pak Wawan is a joke, perhaps because it actually is.
    In the beginning, they were just fooling around and experimenting to get the so-called “ideal” roasting profile. Located in Ronald’s garage, who has been entrusted to run the operational, the group decided to buy a 1 kg roasting machine and green bean coffee from various origins. The problem arose when Ronald’s wife complained, “Why did you spent hundred millions just for research?”

    “Finally we decided to sell the roasted bean on Instagram with the name Kopi Pak Wawan. We only sold the bean we had in the shelf. When we run out of bean of an origin, that’s it, we offer bean from another origin (seasonal),” said Ronald. The other issue is the time availability. Ronald’s job as consultant required him to travel across Indonesia frequently and it caused the production process to be unpredictable.

    “Why we named it Pak Wawan? Because we’re just a bunch of curious people, wawan to know. We were not preparing the brand seriously, marketing-wise. On the other hand, we also want to test the market, if we use decently named brand, but we can produce quality products, will people be coming back?” Ronald wondered.

    About the anonymity, Ronald has a funny story. “My relative brought me to a coffee shop in Semarang. The owner of the place recognized me as coffee person, but he didn’t know I was behind Kopi Pak Wawan. He started to present Pak Wawan’s bean in front of me, ‘here we have roasted bean that we bought from Instagram, nobody knows the identity of the roaster, please taste the coffee.’ I just said to myself, ‘it’s like having coffee at my home’.”

    Getting Serious
    People started to like the product, and Kopi Pak Wawan have more coffee shops to supply to. Within a year, the people in the industry started to know who’s behind the wheel. Although, there are many who still have no clue, until now. They started to get serious when Wahyu Nazar Amir joined the group in 2016, with the official position as “Son of Pak Wawan”. Basically, Wahyu runs everything, from the sales, roasting, packing, etc, while Ronald monitors the cashflow, inventory, and audit.

    Kopi Pak Wawan started to apply professional workflow and monthly target. “We’re quite surprised to see Kopi Pak Wawan’s progress. We used to roast 40 kg of green bean coffee. When Wahyu stepped in, we reached 100 kg. Now, with sales activity, we roast 1 ton of green bean per month,” said Ronald. It’s no wonder that they upgraded the 1 kg roasting machine to 5 kg. If you’re having difficulties to imagine the number, we’ll help. A cup of coffee needs around 20 gram of coffee. A usual coffee shop (not too busy, nor slow) uses 40 kg of roasted bean, in other words, they sell 66 cups in a day. A trending coffee shop might uses up to 120 kg/month or 200 cups a day.

    Even though with the high demand, Kopi Pak Wawan doesn’t have any plans to open its own outlet in near future. “The current system is clear, we can close down if we don’t do the production, meanwhile for retail, we have to open at all cost. The fluctuation of coffee shop is crazy, because Indonesians are into anything trending. However, we are certain that the coffee trend will be around for much longer, because when you’re used to drink fresh coffee, it’s hard to go back to the sachet ones, unless you got no other option,” explained Ronald.

    Premature Trend
    Of course, the coffee trend brings positive effect as we have vast growing number of new coffee learners. On the orher hand, this premature trend also have its side effect: many baristas don’t have clear ideas of his own responsibilities. And this sometimes bugging Kopi Pak Wawan.
    “For barista, it’s easy to blame the roaster, perhaps to look good in front of owners. In fact, this morning Wahyu just returned from our customer’s coffee shop who said our coffee was bitter. After he did some setting of the espresso machine, the problem was easily solved. This doesn’t have to happen if they have barista or owner who’s capable of setting their own machine. Actually, setting the machine is not our responsibility. Imagine, if we supply to 60 coffee shops, and each one of them request their machine to be set. We can spend the whole month just to set machines,” said Ronald.

    Another more extreme example would be when someone complained about the coffee that smelt like spoiled milk in a hotel’s cafe. Again, the roaster was blamed. After investigation, it appeared that the barista never clean the espresso machine’s steam wand, thus some crust of spoiled milk was formed there and it gave the smelly aroma.

    Fortunately as someone who’s been there, Ronald can understand their situation. “When I was a barista, I felt the roaster was not consistent. Now I’m a roaster, I feel it’s the green bean supplier, which is unfortunately true. Perhaps the green bean supplier will blame the farmer, and who will the farmer blame? God? For giving unpredictable rainfall? Why don’t we learn to adjust, similar to what the chefs do to compensate the taste with the available ingredients? Unfortunately, the number of barista who can detect problems is surprisingly low in Indonesia,” stated Ronald.

    Pak Wawan’s Idealism

    Because it started as casual project, Ronald admitted that Kopi Pak Wawan’s idealism is quite firm, not too profit oriented. “In the beginning people saw us as supplier for extreme beans, such as 90+ Hachira Yirgacheffe which costed Rp 1.000.000/kg of green bean. We only sold it at Rp 130.000-140.000/100 gram. when you count weight loss (from green bean to roasted bean) in, we only got Rp 10.000 per pack. That’s why we managed to sell 10 kg of roasted bean in only 30 minutes in Instagram,” he remembered.

    When the demand is going up and the supply stays the same, why not raise the price? “Taking high margin (from exotic bean) is not our goal. We want Indonesians to experience expensive bean, to know whether they like it or not. I have someone complained to me, why our Panama Geisha’s body is very light, no bitterness, it only has sweetness and acidity. Well, that’s Panama Geisha’s characters. As you can see, expensive doesn’t mean good for everyone, especially when I found out that he preferred bold coffee,” he said.

    To further educate the market, Kopi Pak Wawan deliberately offers the same bean with different processing (such as Bajawa honey and Bajawa full washed) or bean from the same farm but different varietal (Andung Sari and Bor Bor, both came from Pengalengan, West Java). “If you’re serious on coffee, you have to find out the differences first hand. Somebody has to give these kind of information, it’s not all about sales. I remembered 7-8 years ago when V60 came to Indonesia, me and my friends have no idea of how to brew coffee with it, because the information was very limited,” said Ronald.

    Chances are, if you often hangout in coffee shops, you’d probably have seen the packaging of Kopi Pak Wawan hanging around the shelves. You might even have tasted the coffee as it has been available in numerous coffee shops, especially in Jakarta. As a mixture of joke, quality products, social media sensation, education and idealism, Kopi Pak Wawan brings the fun into the serious coffee world.


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  • 05/07/2017 - Edwin Pangestu 0 Comments
    Coffeesmith’s Challenges and Adaptations

    Entrepreneurship promises bigger gain, but bigger risk also follows. Here’s how Coffeesmith overcomes their obstacles.


    The first risk the owners of Coffeesmith faced, as faced by every new entrepreneur, is the instability of income. “We’re used to work as employee with fixed income, but now we have to get used to the fluctuation of income. Fortunately, we don’t need too many staffs because as the owners, we can cover everything, from design, becoming baristas, and doing the back office works,” said Cindy Herlin Marta, one of the owners of Coffeesmith.

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  • Venue Passion Media
    17/06/2017 - Eve Tedja 0 Comments
    Dessert Revisited

    PASSION  shows up at the sweet laboratory in Bali and talks to Will Goldfarb and his talented team about Room4Dessert as well as finding out the secret of how to pair sweet dessert with killer cocktail.


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  • Venue Passion Media
    10/06/2017 - Eve Tedja 0 Comments
    A Good Year

    Indonesia’s own winery, Hatten Wines, recently won the much coveted The 2017 Asian Wine Review Winery of the Year award. Proving once and again that grapes flourish on a tropical island, PASSION talks to its innovative founder, Ida Bagus Rai Budarsa, and finds out how Hatten Wines has ripened overtime and thrive against all odds.


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  • Venue Passion Media
    08/06/2017 - Rian Farisa 0 Comments
    La Maison, The Mansion Of Macarons

    As a newcomer in Jakarta’s fierce pastry shop competition, La Maison quickly announced itself as a pastry shop with an interesting specialty - macarons!


    Established in 2011, the company actually started as an online shop. The drive to move forward came from the simple, pure love of baking of its owner Stella Lowis including the pursuit of building her own pastry shop one day.


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  • CoffeeSmith Passion Media
    06/06/2017 - Edwin Pangestu 0 Comments
    Living the Classic Urban Tale

    A group of friends who share the same love of teamed up to open a coffee shop. I wish the story were that simple.


    Admit it, we’ve had similar kind of dream at some point in our lives. I’m speaking to you, millenials. And if you plan to start your own coffee shop business, here’s a story you should hear. It’s from the people who’s been there and done that, or should I say, still there, still doing that. It’s a story of Muhammad Aga, Rendy Mahesa, and Cindy Herlin Marta and their place, Coffeesmith.


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  • Venue Passion Media
    13/04/2017 - Edwin Pangestu 0 Comments
    Invading Japan

    Irvan Helmi explains the reason Japan is a significant entry point to penetrate Asia for Pipiltin


    In this new chapter, Pipiltin aims big. They want Asian market, and they do it by penetrating Japan. Although they’ve been doing business in Singapore, Irvan Helmi (Pipiltin’s owner) thinks Japan is a significant entry point for Asia, because, as we know, Japan is very strict when it comes to quality, “If I were to approach new distributors in Asia, I can say that we’re readily available in Japan, there should be no problem if you’re concerned about quality. We’re very confident with our quality. After all, Indonesia is the third largest cacao producer in the world. Now it’s up to us on how we do the branding.”

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  • Venue Passion Media
    24/03/2017 - Edwin Pangestu 0 Comments
    Indonesia’s 4 Chocolate Origins

    As the third largest cacao producers in the world, Indonesia has many single origin chocolate to offer


    Even though Pipiltin still have their dessert café in Sarinah, they focus in the 32 variants of chocolate bars. Of course, it is interesting to discuss the variants with different kinds of nuts and short bread, but any company can do that. I prefer to talk about their 4 Indonesian single origins chocolate, it’s what separates Pipiltin from the competition. The 4 regions are: Pidie Jaya Aceh, Glenmore East Java, Tabanan Bali, and Tanazozo (read: Tanaroro) Flores.


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  • Venue Passion Media
    17/03/2017 - Edwin Pangestu 0 Comments
    Pipiltin’s Crossroad

    Irvan Helmi is facing crossroad in 2015 for his business


    it’s pretty natural to search for “Pipiltin” in Instagram when you want to search chocolate cafes. But this year, something uncommon happen, I found @pipiltinjapan with Pipiltin’s inverted color in the search result. I said to myself, “the chocolate bar is authentically Pipiltin’s, are they opening new business in Japan? Or is this a fake account?”. I don’t like assumption, so I called Irvan Helmi, the owner of Pipiltin Cocoa (and also Anomali Coffee, FYI). It appears that my first guess was spot on!

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  • Venue Passion Media
    03/03/2017 - Edwin Pangestu 0 Comments
    Raising The Patisserie Standard

    Social Affair proves that Indonesian market is ready for premium products


    It is no secret that the influence of French pastry products in Indonesia started in 5 star hotels through the hands of expatriate chefs. Later on, the outlets outside hotels started to adopt the authentic recipe, altered some of the ingredients by using the cheaper counterpart for the sake of affordability, thus, quality is sacrificed. Sometimes the modification stretched way too far to a point that the only thing they share in common with the original products is the look. Sounds familiar?

    Fortunately, not all outlets exhibit the same issue. Back in 2012, Cacaote reminded me of how good a chocolate cake can be; now Darryl Iswaratioso did the same through Social Affair’s croissant. Both Cacaote and Social Affair prove two things: Indonesian market is ready for premium products and they have set the standard pretty high.

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  • Venue Passion Media
    03/03/2017 0 Comments
    Let Them Eat Cake

    For the last twenty three years, Bali Bakery Patisserie and Cafe has spoiled the sweet-toothed islanders with their fantastic pastry and cakes. PASSION talks to

    the next generation of the founding family, and discover their enduring secret on staying sweet in a fierce industry.

    It wasn’t that long ago when Bali Bakery was the only place on the island where you could get tasty Danishes or Tiramisu for a birthday party on a daily basis. When the first Bali Bakery opened in 1994, the days when croissants or quiches could only be bought from Bali’s luxurious establishments was over. A new era of patisserie for the people has begun.

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  • 03/03/2017 - Edwin Pangestu 0 Comments
    The Rise of Specialty Chocolate

    You’ve heard the term over and over as it has matured in the world of coffee, how about in chocolate?


    While specialty chocolate is still new, “couverture” is perhaps more popular term in chocolate. According to Irvan Helmi, owner of Pipiltin Cocoa, couverture and specialty chocolate are used in different context. While couverture refers to the amount of cocoa butter, specialty chocolate shares the same spirit and approach as specialty coffee. How they handle the raw materials, how they view consistency and refuse the use of synthetic additives are some of the approaches that belong to the world of specialty. “Not all couverture chocolate is specialty, because specialty chocolate requires the cacao bean to be fermented first hand. Non fermented bean doesn’t have any acidity. Fermented cacao bean is sold in higher price because the fermentation process takes longer time,” explained Irvan.

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  • Venue Passion Media
    02/03/2017 - Rian Farisa 0 Comments
    Innovating Beyond the Boundaries of Indonesian Traditional Snacks

    Heading to the southern part of Jakarta in a busy, weekday morning was no small feat. The excitement to know more about Markoek, a decade old business that successfully promotes traditional Indonesian snacks, pumps up the spirit for even the most seasoned foodies.


    Any efforts nowadays through personal means to promote Indonesian food in its own country are very much appreciated – let alone if one could successfully introducing it also abroad. More and more people are showing their love to Indonesian food nowadays, but the pioneers may be only a handful and they are here to inspire us today. One of them is Markoek.

    Traditional Indonesian snacks have unlimited potential – especially if we could appreciate how influential they are within the fabric of our society. Its intricacies behind the making, how colorful they are, and its rich variety are the mediums that brought people together in social functions for as long as any Indonesians could remember.


    Even so, its place within the society nowadays is considered only for lower segments, since the mid-high markets are more interested with the likes of modern French and Japanese pastries nowadays. Not to mention of course, the onslaught of Korean influences for at least a few years now.

    Upon reaching our destination, we meet Mr. Mindiarto Djugorahardjo. Traditionally known as an experienced salesman, a business consultant, and also a trainer; Mr Djugorahardjo has been in the business for around three decades now. Surely if the motivation is righteous and the opportunity arises, one can tell that he would be undaunted with the task of expanding his business to food.

    That was the case regarding the inception of Markoek in 2006. It was a leap of faith in remembrance of what his mother had taught him about food and the spirit to promote Indonesian cuisine. As a foodie and a home cook, Mr Djugorahardjo jokingly suggest that, “Entering this business is a matter of changing the main ingredients of rice to flour”.But even so, Markoek turns into a very serious business.

    Fun fact, Markoek itself may sound like a real world but it’s actually a portmanteau between “markt” (the Dutch for market) and “koek” (cake). Markoek was then labeled as a boutique cake shop, instead of just the usual snack shop.

    The story of how it all started came from eleven years ago. Menteng - a verdant neighborhood in the heart of modern Jakarta, was about to witness the opening of a strategically located small shopping mall that goes with the name Menteng Huis.

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  • Venue Passion Media
    02/03/2017 - Edwin Pangestu 0 Comments
    The Artisanal Tea Blender

    Find your own cup of tea from 89 selections of premium tea blend in Lewis & Carroll.


    By the end of 2015, the modern tea house: Lewis & Carroll captivated the bloggers and early adopter communities in Jakarta with its rainbow colored tea cups and interior decoration. The posts of the place which was influenced by Japanese design’s clean look in Instagram were usually followed up by common question such as, “what a cute place, where is it?” However, we knew Lewis & Carroll was very serious about tea when we see the unique smelling station: small batch of various tea blends in test tubes to help customers find their own favorite cup of tea, and wide range of the tea blends. The clean, colorful Japanese interior design and adventurous smelling station are the reasons why Lewis & Carroll went viral back then.

    In total, Lewis & Carroll offers 89 tea blends which can be grouped into 12 categories: black tea, black blend, white, white blend, herbal, green, green blend, oolong, oolong blend, spice, fruit, and flower. Every tea variant can be enjoyed hot or iced. With their wide variants of artisanal tea blend, it’s a definite heaven for tea lovers out there. “Lewis & Carroll is on a mission to introduce Indonesian tea to the world, not as commodity, but as a brand. We use 80% of Indonesian tea in our modern tea house,” said Bambang Laresolo, Lewis & Carroll’s Master Tea Blender.

    “We offer different tea experience to customers. People might have their own personal taste preference, that’s why we give you many choices. If you’re still new to tea and feel confused, we have the smelling station. Most of the times, if you like the smell, you’ll love the taste of the tea,” said Bambang.

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