I always have that ‘rest assured’ feeling whenever I enter this particular ‘hotel lobby’, knowing that I’ll be under good care of Chef Maya Aldy and her kitchen charisma. I bet everyone feels the same about this restaurant!
Although Otel Lobby has been around for quite some time, I just recently learned that the restaurant has gone through a new touch on its decor. What I really love about it is the European feel like in the 1920s (if I’m not mistaken about the era) with its vintage briefcases and retro-looking furniture. Of course, not only the decor that has changed a bit, Otel Lobby has always been known to put the extra mile on its dishes. Chef Maya Aldy continuously creates something new to delight her beloved customers.
Even a short walk under the punishing sun on the business district of Epicentrum was enough to put me famished and the grilled lamb shank was a beautiful choice to seize the day alongside other refreshing beverages. With its appetizingly rustic appearance, the lamb boasts a depth with its flavor, drenched with sweet potato confit. Anyway, the diced sweet potatoes were also set as the sidekick for the lamb to give it a homey feeling about the dish but the cucumber salad was the one that gave the elegant touch.
Before that, a cutting board filled nachos was invited to join me and my wife conversation about our daily lives. Equipped well with melted cheese, diced avocado, tomato salsa, and crushed meatballs, the nachos was a powerful appetizer for any occasion. Even so, the tempo was a bit disrupted by the sudden appearance of the salmon pizza.
Of course our focus shifted to this extravagant traditional Italian dish topped with smoked salmon, cream cheese, rockets, and chives. Regretful, but we had to let the nachos gone stale from the sauce. It was all highly satisfying but of course it’s not right if I didn’t seal the day with a decent dessert and that choice fell for the Toblerone puff with creamy filling and chocolate sauce. Works the wonder for hot days during summertime!
So, those were my choices among several new inventions by Chef Maya. Other options such as “Pigs in the blanket” for example is actually a tender beef hot dog with warm pastry or from the pasta side, ‘Garden pasta’ filled with zucchini, broccoli, mushrooms, light tomato sauce, and added with chicken or seafood of your choice sounds intriguing as well.
Well, the downside was also there even though Otel Lobby is a place hallowed with magic spells. The service could use a more smile and attention to details were lacking that day like when they served the pizza too quick or when they didn’t clear the table after we had finished with each dish. Way before, the dessert was also served too early even before the nachos came and of course, we made them return it back to the kitchen. Well, I was actually hoping for a fresh dessert after we really finished with the mains but with this, there’s nothing you could do right? It would be a shame to waste it and luckily, the Toblerone puff turned out very well anyway.
At the end of our lunch, a chance meeting with Chef Maya happened just before we left the restaurant and it’s always been a pleasure to meet the lady proprietress. So, there goes my last visit to the ‘chamber of might and magic’ as I said back in 2012. Looking forward for many visits to come and to enjoy the creations of the chef I trust my tummy with.
Halal-friendly (liquors are served)
Some menu suitable for vegetarians
Address: The Annex Building of Bakrie Tower, Epicentrum Kuningan, Jakarta – Indonesia
Opening hours: Everyday, 11 am – late
Facebook: Otel Lobby
Spend: IDR 250,000 – IDR 400,000 for two