May 20, 2014

Izakaya Issei

Another new spot to share. Yay! It's the newly established Izakaya Issei. This small Japanese eatery is located in the busy Senopati area, tucked on the second floor, on top of a small cafe, Appetite and Chief barbershop. Though it was quite hard to be noticed on first go, I am sure you'll notice it if I told you it was on the house right next to the famous Cacaote. Well, you know where to go. 

The word izakaya represents Japanese drinking establishment which also serves food to accompany the drinks, a casual place for after-work drinking. While issei means first. This kind of joint was not common here in Jakarta and that's why Izakaya Issei brought a whole new experience. Let me tell you beforehand that I fell in love with the place, the dishes and even the very hospitable host. I was there to join the crowd for #EATJKT event, held from 21 April to 18 May 2014, and I was so pleased with all the food presented, the speed of service and the nice dinner companion. Here we go.

sharing is caring
The place was not too large but somehow comfortable. It was very crowded on Tuesday night, a good sign that this place really serves good food. We got ourselves a table on the corner, right in front of the famous 'Sharing is Caring' sign.

Let's start with something girly, like this Sake Beries Issei 125k. With a really nice and unique presentation along with cute pink liquid, this definitely fits me, a beginner for drinking. Tasted bittersweet with a strong strawberry taste.

Issei Chicken 27k
This is a must try when visiting Izakaya Issei, their signature Issei Chicken, deep fried chicken served with spicy sambal. The sambal was very spicy and of course I'm a fan. The chicken was very tender and you won't notice that along the conversation, a plate was finished. It was just perfect to start the night.

Age Dori Negi Sauce 36k
This is my personal favorite, age dori negi sauce. If you followed my instagram account, you'll notice I uploaded this live from Izakaya Issei. It was deep fried chicken thigh with special sauce. The chicken was tender, moist, juicy and almost melt in your mouth. The sauce tasted dominantly sweet and blended really well with the chicken.

top: Wakame Salad 45k - Korokke Potato 27k
bottom: Agedashi Tofu 27k - Jacko Salad 36k
Stop a while with a healthier option, like the delicious wakame salad and jacko salad. Both salad served with similar veggies but wakame salad is topped with seaweed and served with additional mayonnaise, while jacko salad is topped with jacko (Japanese small fish, similar to teri). I prefer wakame salad as the dressing were richer with the help of mayonnaise, but I do love the jacko. So perhaps, you can order both and mix them together? Korokke potato was served hot and has a smooth potato puree texture while the agedashi tofu was a darling. Love the warm sweet-salty soup with smooth silk tofu. Yums!

One of the must item in an izakaya is yakitori (Japanese skewer). I taste lots of these that I can't even remember what I had that night. Is there something called yakitori overdose?
Assorted Yakitori - original
Assorted Yakitori - sweet
Here's my personal favorites: gyutan 18k (beef tongue), teba 12k (chicken wings), tsukune 16k (minced chicken) and bonjiri 16k (chicken tail). These yakitori can be ordered with original sauce or sweet sauce. In my opinion, both sauce were nice with different, unique taste each. Theser yakitori are well-marinated and cooked to perfection. Now, if you are allowed to eat pork dishes, do not forget to have these luscious, buta bara (pork belly) and buta bara negi miso (pork belly with miso sauce and spring onion). These pork belly melts in your mouth and definitely not to be missed.

front: Buta Bara Negi Miso 27k - back: Buta Bara 25k 
Continuing our exciting journey, we had teba tsukune, chicken wings stuffed with minced chicken. This is definitely one of my must-order item. Love the juicy chicken wings texture and loving the minced chicken stuffing. Yum yum.
Teba Tsukune 25k
Overwhelmed with the starters and smaller menu, but spare your tummy for the mains. First stop is my favorite, gyutan don, Wagyu tongue with special sauce and rice - spicy. Delicious is an understatement. The beef tongue was very tender and smooth, with enough seasoning and some chilies, you have yourself a bowl of happiness. I do think that the portion would be too small for guys, but hey.. you had more than enough starters and smaller menus to choose.

Gyutan Don 95k
Continuing our bigger menu with butabara don and tori soborodon. Butabara don is pork belly over steamed rice. The seasoning was similar with gyutan don with spring onions and chilies on top. Of course, the pork belly was tender and smooth. While tori soborodon is minced chicken donburi topped with nori and egg. Again, it was well-seasoned and delicious!

Butabara Don | Tori Soborodon 62k
If you prefer something without rice, try the chicken katsu curry and chicken teriyaki. Crispy breaded chicken cutlet drenched in thick curry sauce. You gotta love it. The chicken teriyaki is another darling. Juicy chicken cooked with sweet teriyaki sauce.
Chicken Katsu Curry 46k
Chicken Teriyaki 39k
Are you thirsty already? I bet the sake berries we had earlier were not enough to quench your thirst. Do not be afraid as Izakaya Issei serves Asahi beer. Japan's no. 1 beer served in a frozen glass. I did not try it as I'm not too fond of alcohol, but everybody knows the quality of this beer.

Asahi Beer 
Or try their signature cocktail selection. We had rhubarb lemonade and Tokyo flush fixx. Rhubarb lemonade consisted of orange wedges, fresh lemon juice, Jim Beam White, sour rhubarb and sprite on top. While Tokyo flush fixx consisted of sake, midori, vodka, soda water and lemon wedges. These are lighter version of the alcoholic beverages served in the house. I have to say that I kinda like the rhubarb lemonade as it was really refreshing, with a light taste of alcohol.

 Rhubarb Lemonade 110k - Tokyo Flush Fizz 125k
To end the lovely night, we were served with beer sorbet, a dessert made from the alcoholic drinks which tasted unique and refreshing.

Now imagine you with your beloved friends share the table for great Japanese cuisine and some fresh cocktails over gossips. That's definitely my kind of night. Overall, I had a great time at Izakaya Issei with a lovely host and delicious food. I will surely return to taste more of their delicacies.
Izakaya Issei
Jl. Senopati Raya No. 82 Level 2
South Jakarta
Ph.: 6221 6079 6880

May 18, 2014

Godiva Chocolatier

Godiva is one of the most recognized chocolate brand, famous for its premium chocolates. Opening their first Indonesia store in Plaza Indonesia, Godiva Chocolatier definitely have made all the chocolate lovers spoiled. A gallery of curated chocolate tucked in the corner of 1st floor. It's something you definitely do not want to miss. Plus, the employees were so helpful and hospitable, you'll feel like you're in some best friend's house.

The minute I walked in the store, it almost felt like a wonderland. A bright white store full of chocolates! I must be in heaven! Pralines, truffes, carres, chocolate bars, the heavenly Godiva biscuits and.. the infamous chocolixir. I am one blessed girl. So that night I was accompanied by the lovely, cheerful Ms. Fredericka Rendy who was very kind to introduce me to the world of Godiva. Come and join me.

First, let me introduce you to chocolixir, chocolate-base drinks made of the premium Godiva chocolate. The chocolixir series consisted of the classic dark chocolate decadence, milk chocolate decadence, dark chocolate mint, dark chocolate raspberry and the new white chocolate matcha. All ready upon your orders. Priced on a stunning 70k each does not impact the enthusiasm of loyal customers.

I was given the privilege to taste one of the classic series, and I wasn't quite sure whether to pick the classic dark chocolate decadence, or the attractive dark chocolate raspberry. Somehow I fell for the charm of dark chocolate raspberry and there I was, sucking the most delicious combination of the holy 72% dark chocolate and fresh raspberry sauce. It was really surprising to taste just how good the combination could be. Definitely one of a kind taste, which should go to your must-try list.

Godiva keeps innovate and finally introduce the latest innovation called, White Chocolate Matcha Chocolixir. This one is a white chocolate base drink with a touch of green tea. I was quite skeptical when hearing the name of white chocolate. Well, white chocolate is not my favorite, as it often taste too sweet and too creamy. But a blogger got to do what a blogger got to do. A nice, greenish and very appealing chocolixir appeared before me and I had my first sip... then my second, and third, and I just couldn't stop. It was one of the most delicious drink I have ever tasted. Surprisingly light and not overly sweet, with a strong kick of matcha. It successfully exceeds my expectation. I even finished my cup, until the last drop. That's how much I love it! Not exaggerating.

Of course, it's not official to visit Godiva Chocolatier before having their famous curated chocolate, right? On top of their famous truffespraline and carres collection, Godiva continues to innovate by introducing new flavors. All these to satisfy your craving, chocolate die-hard fans! And again, I was so lucky given the chance to try their latest addition to the truffes collection.. These babies will cost you Rp300,000/100gr.. Now, let's meet the gorgeous Godiva's babies..

Truffe Praliné Brésilienne
Truffe Praliné Brésilienne is my favorite of the latest collection. Milk chocolate filled with hazelnut praline then coated with crispy caramelized hazelnut. It was sweet-nutty burst in your mouth. What not to love. 

Truffe Mousse Matcha
Attention all green tea lovers! This is not to be missed! Green tea custard inside Godiva's dark chocolate, dipped in green tea powders. It was so good. A bit bitter due to the dark chocolate and green tea powder definitely kick you tongue to taste and welcome the new addiction.

Truffe Caramel Salé
This is dark chocolate-milk chocolate filled with rich liquid salted caramel. See the oozing liquid caramel coming out after the first bite? Yeah, it's sexy! Loving this till the last drop!

Truffe Mousse Vanille Mieal

Lastly I tried Truffe Mousse Vanille Mieal, wildflower honey infused ganache with light vanilla mousse, wrapped in dark chocolate and dipped into the creamy white chocolate flakes. This was too vanilla-ey and too sweet for my taste buds. Actually there is another new truffe addition, the Truffe Speculoos which is filled with cinnamon speculoos biscuit mousse, famous from Europe, but it was sold out and I didn't get the chance to try.

After trying their truffes, Ms Fredericka was kind enough to show me how to differentiate good from bad chocolate. And I'm sharing this little secret with you.
1. See. The surface of a good chocolate is slightly oily but very clean.
2. Touch. A good chocolate has the smooth, clean texture, not too dry and rocky but not easily melt
3. Smell. Of course, you have to be able to smell strong cocoa from a good chocolate.
4. Hear. Try breaking the chocolate next to your ear and hear the sound which should be just right, not to loud (means too dry) and not without sound (means too much milk).
5. Lastly, my favorite part.. Taste. A good chocolate should not be leaving any trace on your mouth, tongue or throat.

50% dark chocolate carres

Godiva Chocolatier
Plaza Indonesia, Level 1 Unit 114
Jl. M.H. Thamrin Kav 28-30
Jakarta 15350
Ph.: 6221 2992 3972

May 3, 2014

Publico Bistro & Winebar

One of the best feeling in the world is sharing great food with great friends. Well, that's basically how I felt eating out in Publico Bistro & Winebar. Tucked in the most busy area in Jakarta, Publico Bistro & Winebar has stolen my attention since a while ago, however the chance to try had just came last month. It was a regular dinner where I shared table with my favorite 5 girls. We had our youth together and now spending our maturity ages by seeing each other regularly. Talking about spending the old days by playing mahjong together sounds really realistic haha..

As usual, we went there after a busy day at office. Lucky for us, the traffic was quite nice and I managed to reach Senopati only in 30 minutes from Satrio area. If you're familiar with Satrio area, you'll know that's a blessing. The place was quite packed when we arrived, but we managed to get a table on the corner of their 2nd floor. I fell in love instantly with the place: high ceiling, white stone walls, geometric tiles and black-yellow dining chairs, completed with brown leather sofas in the corner. Now let's get into business. It's dinner time!

Started slow by having our drinks coming first. We had hot cammomile tea (Rp35k), iced lychee tea (Rp35k) and doctor recipe juice (Rp50k), some other drinks were not photographed due to the thirsty customer haha.. I had the hot cammomile tea which tasted just okay, it was ordinary cammomile tea anyway. The lychee tea was a bit bland, I blame the amount of ice put into it. Luckily, doctor recipe juice come to save the day. A blend of fresh green apple, lychee and lime juice, this drink really refresh the night.  

cammomile tea - lychee tea - doctor recipe juice

We spent almost half an hour picking our dish. After some rough discussion, we finally made our choices. We picked 24-hr marinated chicken wings (Rp70k) to start. Six pieces of succulent chicken wings grilled in charcoal grill oven and served with spicy smoked paprika and mint aioli. The chicken wings were juicy completed with that finger-licking good sweet, spicy sauce. However, in my opinion, it was a bit overpriced looking at the serving size.

Onto the pasta selection, we had vongole pasta (Rp70k). A bowl full of creamy spaghetti with generous clams. Well, I have always been a fan of vongole pasta and of course I love this dish! The cream sauce was not overwhelming the pasta was al dente and the clams were served really fresh. We finished the whole bowl in split second. 

Next, we had grilled assorted sausage (Rp90k), served with sauteed mushrooms, coleslaw and triple cooked fries. On our first impression, two sausages do not meet the standard to be classified as "assorted". Sadly, the best thing on the plate was the coleslaw and mushrooms. The sausage were actually quite good, with a nice crunchy texture on the outside and tender on the inside. The fries were just mediocre. Perhaps we were expecting too much looking at the name.

From the fish section we picked steamed-grilled barramundi (Rp145k), fllet of barramundi in garlic, ginger, fish sauce and lemon marinade, steam-grilled in banana leaf. It definitely looked like pepes ikan right? An expensive one I suppose. But it was probably my favorite dish of the night. Love the tender, smooth texture of the barramundi. Simply cooked giving a nice, balanced taste where everything falls just right into place.

We still have some more food to go. Stay with me! Continuing our dinner that night, we had grilled peri-peri chicken panini (Rp75k), succulent grilled chicken homemade panini with smoked peri-peri aioli. The chicken was huge, served on top of panini bread, along with potato chips and salad. The chicken was tasty with a hint of spiciness from the peri-peri sauce. Their panini bread was fluffy and light, giving a nice texture to the whole dish.

Still from the chicken section, we also had grilled oven chicken breast with pesto (Rp90k), served with basil tomato concasse and butter mashed potato. The dish was very pretty! Loving the colorful food arrangement on the plate. The taste was as good as it looked. The chicken was tender and pesto sauce perfectly blend with the tomato concasse. The butter mashed potato was delightful side dish. The whole plate was just perfect in the eye and in the mouth.

Of course, there's always room for dessert. So we had varlhona mars bar (Rp60k) and vanilla creme brulle (Rp60k) to end the night. Warning, food porn ahead. The varlhona mars bar was a must order item for you, chocolate lover. The famous Mars bar with varlhona chocolate mousse, chocolate crumbles, vanilla chantilly then topped with salted caramel. I would say that varlhona chocolate mousse was the star of the plate. I really love the smooth, tender chocolate mousse especially when eaten together with the crumbles and salted caramel.

The vanilla creme brulee was served pretty to tickle our almost full tummy. It was served with caramel disc, banana passionfruit compote and coconut gelato. It was a dessert pick for non-chocolate lover. The creme brulee was not like the ordinary as the caramel was served separately. It was soft and not overly sweet with the right texture. The coconut gelato tasted a bit weird for my taste buds, though.

At the end, it was a nice dining experience we had in Publico. There were several hit and miss, but overall we had a great time, with great ambiance and delicious food. I, personally, will be back for their desserts. Yums!

Publico Bistro & Winebar
Jl. Senopati Raya 65, Kebayoran Baru
South Jakarta 12190
Ph.: 6221 5296 4960

Apr 1, 2014

Koffie Warung Tinggi d/h Tek Soen Hoo

Koffie Warung Tinggi is a new established coffee shop, located in the corner of 5th floor West Mall, Grand Indonesia Shopping Town. I don't usually wander around the 5th floor of the mall, so I did not notice until few fellow food bloggers made it on their blog. I was more than curious to try. See, I'm a sucker for coffee, so it's like a must to visit new coffee shops. Of course, I took my mom, the coffee connoisseur to also try this newbie with me.

To my surprise, the tag shows that it was established in 1878, while I just notice the name recently. That's when my mom said, "Oh, I know this place. It used to be very famous for selling coffee beans in Hayam Wuruk area.. Oh there you go, it was known as Tek Soen Hoo." Now I see. It started in 1878 when Tek Soen Hoo was just a modest convenient store in Hayam Wuruk area, and how it developed into a coffee brand supplier to Indonesia's best hotels and supermarkets. And in 2013, a modern coffee house is established by OPCO Group. 

It was a long story of a coffee shop, claimed to be the first in Jakarta. I love the historical touch of this shop already. I'm cheap, eh? Well, Koffie Warung Tinggi, of course, sells mainly Indonesian local coffee, coffee companions and heavy bites. Since I had my lunch, I decided to try their coffee and bought martabak to balance my bitter coffee. So here's our coffee break.

long black 8oz (22k)

cappuccino 8oz (30k)

martabak manis plain (15k) with nutella (20k)
My mom fell in love with their long black as it was bitter with low acidity just the way she liked it. She said it was most certainly the best cup of coffee she ever had. See, she loves her coffee black. I also llove my cappuccino so much, it was smooth, creamy and topped with just enough foam. No sugar added as the companion is the sweet martabak topped with nutella jam. This martabak topped with nutella jam has been really famous throughout Jakarta. Warung Tinggi's version was delightful. I love the soft texture of martabak and oh those melted nutella jam. What's not to love? The butter was just enough not to make it too oily and ruin the whole plate.

Overall, I had a really pleasant coffee break at Koffie Warung Tinggi. I must admit that cup of cappuccino definitely has won my heart. Definitely going to return to this historical coffee shop.

the leftovers.. nothing!
Until then, cheers!

Koffie Warung Tinggi d/h Tek Soen Hoo
Grand Indonesia Shopping Town
West Mall 5th fl.
Jl. M.H. Thamrin No. 1
Central Jakarta 10310
Ph.: 6221 - 2358 0311/2
website | twitter


Related Posts Plugin for WordPress, Blogger...