Celebrating my department first anniversary, we booked seats two weeks prior for a dinner at Java Restaurant, Intercontinental Hotel Jakarta. For this Ramadhan, Java promotes 50% discount for all using ANZ credit card. A chance indeed!
Arriving early, we were given good positioned seats and the privilege to take the foods before the everybody else arrive. Iftar at Java with this promotion proved to be good business since you gotta book way earlier. My colleague checked the availability earlier that morning and to found out that it’s fully booked already. Best to do it at least a week prior. Though in normal times, I suppose you can just waltz in and sit.
Plenty of seemingly good openers from Indonesian delicacies to international style appetizers. I love picking the raw stuffs like sushi, shrimps, sashimi, and variety of mussels. Salad bar was also available also with other unique Indonesian food like Cirebonese tahu gejrot (small fried soybean curds mixed with black sauce made from mixtures of bird-eye chilis, shallots, garlic, and soy sauce) and satay made of lambs, beef, and chicken.
The opener was delightfully nice except for the certain bamboo mussels and bul bul mussels which were a bit strange and cannot be digested easily. The freshness level was still under C’s Seafood and Steak Restaurant in Grand Hyatt Jakarta of course but slightly better than Rosso at Shangri La Jakarta.
A bit of shame goes to the main dishes. While the big and intimidating steamed garoupa fish was delectably great but the rest was just disappointing. The dory, cheese sausages, chicken cordon bleu, and beef tongue were definitely ruled out from five star hotel standard. While the beef kalio (sauteed beef with certain Padangnese style cooking taste a bit spicy with a hint of curry and certain sweetness in it), beef meatballs, and of course, again the garoupa fish were the stars of the warm Iftar that night.
Additional Indonesian stalls such as the batagor and soto mie dishes were also available. The batagor or baso tahu was similar like dim sum actually. It comprises of steamed siomay, soybean curds filled with fish, and many others. Add the ground nut sauce with Indonesian sweet soybean ketchup for better taste. While the sotomie was actually noodles, meat, and vegetables with curry soup.
The dessert was also not highly commended. I didn’t taste the Indonesian desserts but the other cakes like classic tiramisu and vanilla pannacotta were not convincing at all. Try to compare it with Rosso’s divine pannacotta and you’ll see the difference.
The problem within massive buffet prepared for breakfast to dinner at five stars hotels like this sometimes only boasts the hygienic level (which we don’t know actually) and/or the service and especially the unique foods. The service is also sometimes not that good. The unique foods sometimes also turn out to be a disaster while the standard foods are most of the times less tasty than those in hawkers or even your home dishes.
I can sometimes understand the hardships they experienced inside the kitchen but it is also important to respect the patrons expectations, especially expectations for a five star hotel dishes. They’re paying a fortune and it’s your duty to comply to their expectations. But not failing miserably like this, Java. Sorry to say, it’s not good enough for me.
Intercontinental Hotel Jakarta Midplaza, 3rd Floor. Jl. Jend. Sudirman Kav. 10-11, Jakarta
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