It took me years to ever finally see Decanter again. Just as I still remembered like it was back then, I am finally home.
It’s not that I came too often back then but surely there was a time when I used to go out with my colleagues from my previous career. Friday night is the time we had been looking for the whole week and we usually went out to try new places to eat and having that cuppa late at night.
Well, Jakarta’s dining scene back then was not as colorful as it is today but certainly there were places that we can always visit from time to time. Decanter was among the most exciting in Kuningan and the one that still stands tall against other come-and-go competitors coming from nearby office buildings and also with the tenants of Setiabudi One and Pasar Festival (now known as Plaza Festival).
My recent visit was originally to exclusively meet Chef Johannes Pratiwanggana. I was quite surprised to find out that Decanter houses one of the most senior chefs that Indonesian culinary scene ever has for the past few decades and also among the rarities that is still very active until this day.
Of course, he wouldn’t let me go without actually tasting some of his best in Decanter. It was late in the afternoon and dinnertime will happen in an hour or so. Despite of that, Chef Jo – as he’s usually called, presented two lovely dishes that day.
The first one was the rigatoni with spinach and pesto made from sundried tomato. It was a balance mixture between heartiness and the refreshing taste from the pesto. The single serving of it was already very generous and Decanter can also prepare the patrons sharing portion which I deem would be a really good try for group of friends and colleagues for solid lunch or dinner.
The second one was that perfect duck confit accompanied by oven-roasted potatoes. It’s actually rare to find a really good duck confit lately for me, but Chef Jo’s version is not just crispy on the outside but the in-depth flavor inside is not to be taken lightly at all.
Well, that was one helluva nostalgia. It was short but intimate, it was not at all splurging but instead, comforting. Despite the growing pains coming from the competition, Decanter actually has all that it needs to beat the odds.
If we can appreciate what Chef Jo has to offer, judging from his vast experience and finesse, Decanter is that one place to go for your weekend dates, business lunches, and even for some personal time alone.
Not halal-certified, smoking is allowed
Some dishes are suitable for vegetarians
Plaza Kuningan, Jalan Rasuna Said, Jakarta – Indonesia
Opening hours: Daily, 11am – 12am