The Foodie Magazine - Cafe Bogor 1

Iconic: Bogor Café (The Foodie Magazine, Feb 2014)

One dish that is loved and enjoyed by many Indonesians as well as foreigners is the sop buntut or oxtail soup. And for the past 40 years, there is no other restaurant which everyone would point to for the best sop buntut but the iconic Bogor Café at the Hotel Borobudur.

Hotel Borobudur holds a very special distinction in Jakarta. Not only that it is one of the oldest hotels in the city, built on vast acres of land within the heart of Jakarta, and in close proximity to the city’s most famous tourist landmarks and government institutions, it also has, for food lovers, a great set of restaurants from different genres and supervised by local chefs.

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Bogor Café was inaugurated in 1974 and is widely known to have the best sop buntut in town. The specific reason behind the success and popularity of the café’s sop buntut can be traced back to a brilliant move back in the 1970s. Back then, a certain hawker stall selling sop buntut could be found just outside of the hotel, this stall was very popular and according to rumors, then Indonesian vice president Adam Malik was one of its regulars. After a while, the hotel management decided to ask the vendor to introduce the oxtail soup in the hotel instead and since then the legendary dish has been casting a magical spell upon the hearts of so many.

At first, the hotel set up a trolley that served the oxtail soup just nearby the main buffet section, served directly for the customers by an attendant. The oxtail soup proved to be successful among the patrons and at that time, the daily consumption reached 75 kg. As time went by, the sop buntut gained more popularity and it is estimated to this day, Hotel Borobudur has sold around 2.5 million portions of sop buntut and firmly establishing claim to as iconic and legendary. Now Hotel Borobudur serves around 350-400 kilos of oxtail a day for the oxtail soup and the buffet comes with all-you-can eat oxtail soup.

The Foodie Magazine - Cafe Bogor 5

Since it started, the hotel has had to raise the quality of the oxtail and now only used top quality oxtails from Australia and New Zealand to make sure it has standard size, weight, and fat content. The quality of the meat has to be complemented also with the soup, which Bogor Café has consistently managed so far by using a strict recipe that incorporates Indonesian spices such as nutmeg, cloves, ginger and peppercorns. Aside from the original oxtail soup, Bogor Café also serves grilled oxtail and oxtail fried rice.

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As the hotel’s all day dining restaurant, Bogor Café also carries other cuisines, including the Japanese buffet, Indonesian dishes, and delightful desserts which include a wide selection of homemade ice cream that everyone would not want to miss. Because of the popularity and success of the Bogor Café sop buntut, from the time of Sukarno until the present, the hotel has decided to branch out to the malls, opening Bogor Café branches in Pacific Place and Pondok Indah malls. A singular fete which is unduplicated in Indonesia. Now patrons need not head over to Hotel Borobudur to enjoy their favorite sop buntut, they can just pop over to the malls.

Hotel Borobudur renovated Bogor Café in 2005 to increase it’s space and accommodate a larger capacity of guests. Now it is ready to welcome a larger crowd of adoring fans of its celebrated sop buntut. Every year, during the Hotel Borobudur’s anniversary, one of its gifts to its patrons is a discount equivalent to the age of the hotel for it’s famed sop buntut. That, my dear foodies, is an annual opportunity you don’t want to miss.

The Foodie Magazine - Cafe Bogor 2


Featured in THE FOODIE MAGAZINE February 2014 edition

Download it for free here:

Photos by: Dennie Benedict

The Foodie Magazine - Mango Tree Bistrobar 5

Foodie’s List: Mango Tree Bistrobar (The Foodie Magazine, Mar 2014)

The recently opened Mango Tree Bistrobar in Plaza Senayan revealed a compact venue with an atmosphere that’s suitable for any occasion – be it for casual lunch, an intimate drinks with friends. The exciting combination between delectable Thai cuisine and intriguingly concocted libations is a must try.

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For many, venturing into the posh Plaza Senayan mall would be reserved for specialty shopping or the cinema, but recently, the top floors of the mall has been playing host to a wide array of restaurants catering to various palates. It’s newest resident, Mango Tree Bistrobar surprisingly feels open and presents great options at a very affordable price range.

The interiors are dark yet welcoming, the left side is lined with round cubicles that offer a private feel, while the right side has banquet seating. The white brick walls are punctuated by bright artwork, which give the dining room a kick of energy. Deeper inside, an open kitchen is positioned face-to-face with the bar and in-between, a huge screen that may probably be used for lively nobar (nonton bareng, literally means ‘watch together’) events on football matches or perhaps, muay thai.

The Foodie Magazine - Mango Tree Bistrobar 1
Spicy papaya salad with salted egg and soft shell crab with mango salad
Deep fried sea bass with tamarind sauce
Deep fried sea bass with tamarind sauce

While you may not feel the traditional Thai atmosphere, common at most Thai restaurants, upon browsing the menu, expect to confuse yourself with a full range of tempting Thai cuisine. During our visit, everyone enjoyed the rejuvenating spicy papaya salad with salted egg and soft shell crab with mango salad, which we had for our starters. Then we continue with the elegantly complex deep fried sea bass with tamarind sauce. For us, this is definitely the wow dish that everyone must not miss while here. And to end, we had everybody’s favorite – the durian panna cotta.

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From the long bar, Mango Tree Bistrobar has brought internationally acclaimed mixologist Joseph Boroski to create a set of Thai-inspired cocktails to compliment the food. Joseph’s concoctions are well known throughout many properties around the world and his know how with Thai culture made his creations an essential addition to
Mango Tree Bistrobar cocktails.

Joseph Boroski
Joseph Boroski

Among some of his best for MangoTree Bistrobar are the Muay Thai Kick that mixes bourbon, lemon grass, gula Melaka and pandan that appears beautiful and fragrant, or can also opt for the Silk Spun Sister made from vodka, Thai basil, mulberry and candy floss. The Mango Tree global signature cocktails with the Thai influence are also of great options while you’re here. The Mango Tree Bellini consists of vodka, schnapps, fresh mango, orange juice, and red wine; while Thai Caipirinha is made from vodka, pineapple juice, lychee juice, coriander, and ginger ale.

A lethal combination just like we told you earlier, right? There’s no need to wait any longer for a visit here then.


Halal-friendly (food to confirm, the restaurant serves alcohol)
Suitable for vegetarians

Plaza Senayan, Jalan Asia Afrika no. 8, Jakarta – Indonesia
Telp: +62.21.572.5217

Mango Tree Bistro Indo

Opening hours: 
Everyday, mall opening hours


Featured in THE FOODIE MAGAZINE March 2014 edition

Download it for free here:

Photos by: Dennie Benedict

My Way of Enjoying #Magnoffee

Bahwa saya begitu mencintai kopi adalah sebuah fakta yang tak terbantahkan! Apalagi sejak satu dekade terakhir ini saya semakin menikmati jenis yang terbilang klasik, alias jenis-jenis kopi hitam yang biasa kita kenal dengan nama espresso, ristretto, long black, kopi tubruk atau apapun itu.

Masyarakat perkotaan masa kini, khususnya di Jakarta, sudah semakin bereksplorasi dengan berbagai macam rasa yang mengaitkan manis serta pahit. Begitu banyaknya coffee shops maupun dessert bars menjadi tanda bahwa kini eksplorasi tersebut telah mencapai titik terang dan orang tidak ragu lagi untuk berkecimpung dalam sebuah lifestyle sebagai seorang konsumen, maupun dari segi bisnis yang berlatar kedua rasa tersebut.

Tergoda dengan perkembangan pesat dalam dua industri ini membuat saya memutuskan juga untuk ikut andil bereksplorasi di luar dua rasa aman kesukaan saya – yakni asin dan umami. Harus diakui bahwa pencarian saya begitu berwarna dan dalam prosesnya saya menikmati berbagai twist dalam kreasi penciptaan minuman kopi, dessert, serta es krim.

Salah satu yang mengundang perhatian saya adalah rebranding sukses yang dimainkan perusahaan dari es krim idola saya sejak kecil yaitu Magnum. Meski berawal hanya dari satu rasa vanilla saja – sebuah rasa yang teramat istimewa dalam ingatan masa kecil saya, kini Magnum telah berkembang menjadi sebuah brand es krim yang kuat dan memiliki cafe sendiri yang lengkap dengan berbagai sajian makanan serta kreasi-kreasi dessert yang melibatkan berbagai rasa es krim Magnum.

Mengikuti tren menikmati dessert terkadang bukanlah hal yang mudah maupun murah bagi banyak orang, Kini dengan konsep mutakhir Magnum with coffee yang menggunakan tagline #Magnoffee, es krim ini tengah memperkenalkan tren menikmati dessert yang terbilang murah meriah karena bisa dikreasikan sesuka penikmatnya.

Berangkat dari kesukaan saya menikmati espresso affogato alias kopi jenis espresso yang disatukan bersama es krim vanilla atau rum raisin, saya terinspirasi melakukan hal yang sama dengan Magnum.

Magnum with Cappuccino
Magnum with Cappuccino

Pertama-tama yang saya coba adalah segelas cappuccino panas yang saya tambahkan dengan bubuk kayu manis, serta kemudian dipadukan dengan Magnum rasa vanilla dan kacang almond. Rasa yang tercapai ternyata cukup bisa saya nikmati dan memang rasa vanilla selalu fleksibel dengan kombinasi apapun. Eksterior luar Magnum yang merupakan coklat Belgia selalu dapat memuaskan di berbagai kondisi, baik dinikmati langsung maupun digabungkan dengan kopi.

Di kesempatan lain saya juga mencoba Magnum yang saya celupkan langsung dengan long black yang berasal dari biji kopi Toraja yang terkenal kaya dengan rasa yang kuat dan mouthful. Tidak disangka pula ternyata eksperimen kali ini berjalan sukses dan saya beserta istri menikmati hingga tetes terakhir meskipun hujan deras tengah melanda Jakarta pada siang itu.


Eksperimen ini tentu akan terus berlanjut dan bahkan saya berencana untuk berbagi kebahagiaan yang sederhana ini dengan teman-teman serta keluarga yang lain. Mungkin lain kali akan melibatkan whipped cream, jenis kopi yang berbeda, rasa Magnum yang lainnya, dan kesemuanya dinikmati bersama-sama dalam satu waktu.

Ternyata tidak hanya Magnum with coffee #Magnoffee ini merupakan tren baru tersendiri tapi juga mengajak kita untuk berinteraksi dan berkreasi dalam ranah pribadi, bersama pasangan, maupun teman dan keluarga juga. Sehingga sayang bila kita tidak mencoba untuk menciptakan sesuatu yang baru dan berbeda ketimbang menikmati es krim langsung seperti yang selama ini kita selalu lakukan.

Bagaimana dengan Anda?

Shangri-La Jakarta - High Tea Time 1

Classic High Tea Time at Shangri-La Jakarta

ONGOING. Promotion started from March 2014.
Available only from 3pm – 5pm
Price: IDR 185,000/set

Lobby Lounge, Shangri-La Hotel Jakarta
Jalan Jend. Sudirman Kav. 1, Jakarta – Indonesia


It appears that the trend of enjoying high tea time like the nobility of old have been going on for several years now in Indonesia but many may haven’t found the art or the excitement of enjoying it.

However that’s not the case when you’re in the Lobby Lounge of Shangri-La Jakarta. My time of enjoying it was during a quiet weekend where I ultimately found serenity upon the usually-busy halls of the hotel. It was a bright afternoon and through the enormous windows, one can witness the sublime greenery from the poolside and the hotel’s garden.

Shangri-La Jakarta - High Tea Time 3

While at that, a tower of delicacies from savory to sweet, accompanied the iced coffee float that I chose and my wife’s cup of tea. I may have to admit that tea time for me may not be something that’s too strict and with me wearing the formal attire, but I love taking it casually and over pleasantries between friends or families.

That is also why Shangri-La Jakarta specifically promotes a set menu that completes the needs of any of its Lobby Lounge visitors. The set consists of finger food of different elements from cold, hot, and sweet. I particularly enjoyed lemongrass marinated chicken lollies, the tempura, and the sublime scones with cream and marmalade.

Shangri-La Jakarta - High Tea Time 2

I will not dare to say that the rest was not equally good but all of them was, as a matter of fact! Let’s see, well, there was the chocolate layered cake, crème brulee, dill & yuzu marinated prawns, beef and enoki teriyaki rolls, and even I love the mini burgers made from filet mignon.

For a price IDR 185,000++ per set, it was a really worth-it experience. It’s practically great for two and do please complement such excellence with good drinks, and as I said earlier, experience it upon a comfy sofa overlooking the garden view of the hotel on one fine sunny afternoon.

To tell you the truth, that is an experience that I want to emulate as well back home, but if only I can have the scones and the tea from Shangri-La Jakarta for that. Oh well…

Cold Mezzeh

Authentic Lebanese Fare at Mandarin Oriental Jakarta

Promotion lasts only for 14-19 April 2014
Cinnamon, Mandarin Oriental Jakarta
Jalan M.H. Thamrin, Jakarta – Indonesia


Levantine cuisine has always been the only one thing that intrigues me most when it comes to Middle Eastern fares. I believe that the region is a melting pot between the Arabian and Turkish cuisines and one of the representation of that came from Lebanon, naturally.

Mandarin Oriental Jakarta, for the second time, promotes the specific Lebanese cuisine led by a native chef who happens to be the CDC of Mandarin Oriental Kuala Lumpur, Mr Raymond Abou Rjeily.

Chef Raymond Abou Rjeily
Chef Raymond Abou Rjeily

For me personally, this is a Ramadhan festivity that came a bit earlier this year and I am grateful for it. Not only that I finally managed to explore one new uncharted territory, but to also completely sample all the dishes available that day.

When it comes to Lebanese cuisine, one can see so many influences there like the mezzeh from the core of Middle Eastern countries cuisine, the sweet desserts of Turkish, the authentic Levantine hummus, and even the lemon chicken as influenced by North African’s tajine.

Pita bread and cold mezzeh
Pita bread and cold mezzeh

Of course, the cold mezzeh (cold appetizers), or some say meze, comes first. Chef Raymond served us three types of bread – the plain pita, one with cheese, and one with the herbs. All the five kinds of mezzeh suited my appetite for my lunch that day.

I particularly enjoyed so much Chef Raymond’s interpretation of baba ghanoush that adds fresh pomegranates into it to make it even more delicious and crunchy in texture!

Four other mezzehs are the safsouf (couscous and chickpea salad), labneh bil khear (dry yogurt), hummus, and shamandar mahrous (beetroot puree). Additionally, Chef Raymond also prepares fatoush salad and shawarma stations – all fresh and intriguing!

Arabic rice, couscous, and skewers
Arabic rice, couscous, and skewers

The main dishes are not to be missed as well, especially with so many options of chicken and lamb skewers like shish tawouk (chicken breast marinated with garlic and cumin), kafta antabli (grilled minced lamb skewer), and the kebab. Top that on an Arabic rice filled with peanuts like walnut, pine nuts, pistachio, and almond. Sublime!

When compared with other southern countries, Lebanese cuisine provides milder taste but still, it uses a wide range of spices and ingredients. However, it matches a lot the Turkish way when it comes to sweet desserts.

Chicken shawarma
Chicken shawarma

Traditional desserts like umm ali (Middle Eastern-style of bread and butter pudding) and baklava are among the best you can try. I can actually bear with the sweetness now or was Chef Raymond reduce it a bit? I couldn’t care less but it was really nice after all!

So, be sure to catch up with the promotion as it will only lasts until 19th of April. Chart the Lebanon into your culinary map like I did, guys!

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