Category Archives: Jakarta

La Maison, The Mansion of Macarons (Passion, 2017)

As a newcomer in Jakarta’s fierce pastry shop competition, La Maison quickly announced itself as a pastry shop with an interesting specialty – macarons!

Established in 2011, the company actually started as an online shop. The drive to move forward came from the simple, pure love of baking of its owner Stella Lowis including the pursuit of building her own pastry shop one day.

For Ms. Lowis, her version of pastry shop should be a refined one, based also by her serious education background at Le Cordon Bleu, Australia. “I gained a lot of experience by working part time as a pastry chef at several restaurants and catering company that supplies pastry for five-star luxury hotels”, said Stella. When she returned to Indonesia, Stella worked together with his brother, Harryck Lowis, to experiment over many recipes until finally they’re ready to share it with everyone.

Persevering for several months initially, orders since then had been coming non-stop. After some time realizing, it’s time for her to build her first shop in Medan. Her unique take on pastry was warmly welcomed there. Years passing by and La Maison have started to take shape and grow into something more significant. Finally, it’s high time for her to spread out the wings of La Maison to Jakarta – the one city where appreciation of pastry is at its zenith in Indonesia.

Speaking about the characteristics of this pastry shop, La Maison is almost exclusively promoting a vast array of macarons – a complicated confection that has gained prominence over Indonesian pastry world for the past few years.

“This small tidbit requires delicate hands and a very complex balance between texture and flavor. Its smooth top, ruffled circumference, a flat base, has mild moistness, and it should easily melt in your mouth. Now that’s what we’re aiming for and the challenge proved to be exciting”, said Stella smiling vigorously.

Taking it to the next level, La Maison’s mind-blowing innovations are macaron flavors which are inspired by Indonesian cuisine – such as Nasi Uduk, Lemper Ayam, Martabak Bangka, or even Sate Padang. “One of our best-selling however, is the Salted Popcorn Macaron. Although people tend to perceive macaron as something sweet, the savory version is actually a success”, shared Ms. Lowis.

From the cakes department, Stella personally admits that each and every of them has to be made with passion by using the finest ingredients and decorated with utmost care. “Two things taken into consideration are taste and also the aesthetic elements”, she said. One of La Maison’s signature cake (and apparently everyone’s favorite) is the Mademoiselle – a refreshing take of almond cake with layers of fresh watermelon, strawberries, red dragon fruit, and decorated with red rose petals.

To fully proceed professionally, Stella observes the trend as well. “Locally speaking, pastry has come a long way in our country. People used to buy cakes only for special occasions but now they have found the simple pleasure of enjoying it any time”, she said. Her remark here pointed out how strategic this move to cater Jakartans who are increasingly fond of dining out and nibbling with pastry.

The pastry industry in Indonesia has grown exponentially for quite some time now and shops can be found in many corners of Indonesian cities. The global trends, more or less, influence the demands especially now in the digital era where customers can simply access interesting pastry innovations by browsing through the social media.

So the next question would be, what’s after this for La Maison? Stella is certainly aiming to expand to other cities and in-between, she hopes to engage in interesting collaborations with legends in pastry industry. What’s even bigger in mind for her though is to keep on improving and serving the best for her beloved customers. (RF)

Jalan Biduk no. 66, Medan
T: +62 821 6602 6668 / +62 61 4573 745
Opening hours: Mon-Sun, 11am – 5.30pm

Grand Indonesia, East Mall – Jakarta
T: +62 811 987 6668 / +62 21 2358 1331
Opening hours: Mon-Sun, 10am – 10pm

Original link:

Images by: Passion


Dapur Solo, More Than Just a Tradition (mise en place, Vol 19 – 2017)

It is now only a year away until Dapur Solo, a Jakarta-based Javanese cuisine restaurant chain, commemorates its thirtieth year of existence. Like legends of prominent start-up businesses, Dapur Solo actually also started from a home garage, selling only rujak (Indonesian-style salad with spicy dressing) and fruit juices at that time.

The proprietress Mrs. Swandani Kumarga began promoting her rujak to people in her neighborhood by distributing pamphlets on a bicycle. Gradually, she began introducing traditional Central Javanese cuisine – particularly dishes coming from the city of Solo and Yogyakarta. Paying tribute to her ancestral hometown’s recipes, from there, her business rose to prominence around the area of Sunter in Northern Jakarta.

Many years later, the same passion and perseverance remain. Hardworking and dynamic as always, Mrs. Swan keeps herself in touch with many key aspects of the business. “Passion is key in the F&B industry as we will not go far without it. You definitely have to know your customers better, recognize the best ingredients, and once you are bigger – quality control is number one,” shares the passionate lady.

Mrs. Swan now runs 15 outlets of Dapur Solo on a different scale – including five full-fledged restaurants and her more recent innovations such as the delivery outposts and an homage to traditional Indonesian desserts and snacks shop, branded Iki Koue and Sowan.

The business that started from as far back as 1988 ultimately underwent major expansions only a decade ago. There was a drive behind all these changes and apparently, the reason was undoubtedly poetic.

“It all star ted with a dream,” says Mrs. Swan. It’s a tag line also seen in a corner of each and every one of her restaurants. Her visionary goal is to promote Indonesian cuisine on an international level and with that, there is a perpetual need to expand. Even up until now, there’s only a handful of well-standardized Indonesian restaurant chains and most are in Jakarta, with Dapur Solo being one of them. Competition is rather fierce, especially coming from the more experienced Western cuisine chain restaurants which people seem to prefer.

Mrs. Swan was quick to open her second outlet at the wealthy Southern Jakarta neighborhood in 2007 and that was only a year after her re-branding campaign. As an avid marketer and quick learner, Mrs. Swan deftly utilizes young talent to create a whole new fresh look for her business, and experiments with other initiatives such as the successful delivery system known as DS Lunch Box and more recently – harnessing the power of social media.

Even so, Dapur Solo is still conservative when it comes to bigger expansion plans. “We are expanding only by using our own capital. The thought of franchising the business was intriguing, but we do not want to compromise quality,” she says. She laments the fact that many franchisees nowadays are more profit-minded rather than seriously involving themselves in the business.

As Dapur Solo grows, the role of central kitchens and training centers become more important than ever. Learning from many a trial and error, Mrs. Swan has created a unique logistics process – starting with devising accurate recipes since Indonesian cuisine is difficult to standardize, the division of roles between central kitchen and the outlets, the delivery scheduling, and other minute details.

Additionally, Dapur Solo also boasts its value proposition to differentiate what it has to offer against the competition. Two things generally perceived immediately by people in general are that Indonesian food is supposedly cheap and that it can be found easily on the streets rather than in restaurants. Mrs. Swan quickly refutes these arguments with several facts of her own.


“Certainly, you can always choose cheaper options; but what we have to offer here is hygiene, the quality of water, authentic recipes, air-conditioned restaurants, and service. I have also appointed native greeters as my representatives to give that Javanese hospitality, in addition to the Javanese feel that comes from the restaurant’s design and the food itself,”she tells us.


Despite her conservative stance all this while, Mrs. Swan is still faithful to her dream of expanding beyond borders, “If the time comes, probably we will need to come up with a smart collaboration plan with investors to open our outlet outside of Jakarta and even abroad.” She prefers to create an open managerial system to keep balance between her family and the shareholders.

Moreover, the government is now more open than ever to promote Indonesian cuisine internationally. With their support, it would be easier for Dapur Solo with its immense experience to tackle issues abroad such as permits, export import, location, as well as promotion.

Now with her daughter ready to take over the reins anytime, it would be interesting to see what happens next. Dapur Solo continues to surprise everyone here and hopefully one day – the most discerning diners abroad.


Images by: Dapur Solo

Original link:

Celebrating the Taste of Indonesia at The Hermitage Jakarta

Celebrating Indonesian Independence Day this August, the opulent The Hermitage Jakarta presents its esteemed patrons with the finest culinary offerings from the archipelago for a limited time only.

The highlight from the all-Indonesian menu is a platter that consists of four classic dishes with a twist. The nasi kebuli is paired with perfectly grilled ribs and peanut sauce, served alongside urap sayur and Balinese sate lilit.

Other must-try highlights are the vast choices for openers such as tahu gejrot or rujak cingur. If you prefer soup, The Hermitage also showcases its sayur lodeh and tongseng. Lastly, the vast array of desserts are not to be missed as well – from klepon, kue ku, and es campur.

The Indonesia Culinary Journey will be available from 10th of August 2017 and the program ends in Sept 10th.

Jalan Cilacap 1, Menteng – Jakarta Pusat
+62 21 3192 6888

Iftar Experience 2017: Grand Hyatt, Jakarta

Sukses dengan sajian-sajian khas Ramadhan di tahun yang lalu, kali ini Grand Hyatt Jakarta mengulang kembali sukses serupa dengan mempersembahkan masakan Turki sebagai menu andalan selama bulan ini.

Selama bulan Ramadhan ini, Grand Hyatt Jakarta khusus bekerja sama dengan Hyatt Regency Istanbul Ataköy yang mengirimkan dua ahli masakan Turki terbaiknya. Kontingen Turki dipimpin oleh Chef Gokhan Alkan dan seorang chef Indonesia yaitu Irba Sabarudin.

Grand Cafe khusus menjadi ajang perhelatan menu-menu iftar terbaik dari hotel kenamaan ini. Bila ingin berkesempatan mencoba masakan khas Turki yang hanya ada selama bulan Ramadhan tahun ini, maka sekaranglah waktunya.

Terakhir berkunjung, semua lini masakan Turki tersaji dengan lengkap. Mulai dari barisan meze dan salata sejuk dan segar, pengiring yang tepat adalah roti bazlama khas Turki yang rupanya lebih empuk dibandingkan roti-roti khas Timur Tengah lainnya. Sederetan meze tersaji berupa haydari (yogurt dengan daun mint dan bawang putih), çoban salatası yang mirip dengan salad hummus fatoush berupa potongan sayuran kotak-kotak yang saya pribadi sangat gemari, serta hummus yang sudah tidak asing lagi.

Dari bagian sajian utama, tidak ada yang lebih menggoda selain dua hal. Yang pertama adalah bütün kuzu tandır & iç pilav atau kambing yang telah dibumbui dimasak perlahan selama berjam-jam dan disajikan bersama nasi pilaf. Kedua adalah bagian döner yang kali itu menyajikan daging ayam. Seperti biasa daging yang telah diiris-iris disajikan dengan sayuran dan ditangkap oleh roti pita.

Pengiring masakan utama hari itu adalah kofte (bola daging), zeytinyağlı enginar (artichoke yang dimasak dalam minyak zaitun dan sayuran), serta karnıyarık (terong dengan daging sapi dan daun mint), dan banyak lainnya.

Satu hal yang sangat khas dari Ramadhan tahun ini adalah penampilan menarik dari pastrami serta sosis sapi khas Turki yang cocok dipadukan dengan roti. Sedikit usil, tentu kali itu saya padukan saja dengan nasi pilaf dan hasilnya tetap lezat!

Terakhir iftar ditutup dengan sederetan dessert khas Turki seperti buah pir yang dicelup dengan saus gula yang khas, cookies khas Turki dengan kacang badam, dan banyak lainnya.

Tidak hanya masakan Turki, seperti biasa Grand Cafe juga menyajikan sederetan masakan internasional lainnya yang sepertinya tetap sulit dilewatkan. Namun terakhir jangan lupa tutup dengan pilihan pastry ciamik Grand Hyatt Jakarta yang termashur, homemade ice cream, serta tentunya kopi Turki!

GRAND HYATT JAKARTA | Jalan MH Thamrin no. 30, Jakarta | +62 21 2992 1234 |

Podomoro University Gelar Event “Pesona Pedas Nusantara”

Podomoro University kembali menyelenggarakan event tahunan persembahan dari mahasiswa Hotel Business Program angkatan 2015 (HBP 2015) bertajuk “Pesona Pedas Nusantara”.

Dengan tema “Mengenal Lebih Dekat Cita Rasa Sambal Indonesia”, kegiatan ini diselenggarakan pada hari Jumat 16 Juni 2017 dan bertempat di kampus Podomoro University, Jakarta. Acara serupa akan diadakan setiap tahunnya dengan tema yang berbeda.

Cita rasa pedas sambal merupakan salah satu warisan budaya Indonesia, yang mana pada umumnya masakan Indonesia menggunakan cabai sebagai salah satu bahan terpenting dalam beragam masakannya.

Melalui event ini, para mahasiswa mengharapkan agar masyarakat luas semakin mengapresiasi cita rasa sambal Indonesia dan mengangkatnya tidak eksklusif dari sisi rasa saja, namun juga dari sisi seni. Warisan budaya cita rasa pedas ini merupakan salah satu keunggulan dari kuliner tradisional Indonesia.

Pesona Pedas Nusantara memiliki rangkaian acara mulai dari Bazaar, Pameran, Talk Show, dan berbagai kompetisi. Talk show tersebut menghadirkan beberapa narasumber, yaitu: Chef Marco dari restoran Marco Padang Peranakan, Anak Jajan sebagai food blogger dan Togi Panjaitan sebagai food photographer.

Masing-masing narasumber akan membawakan materi seputar demo masak, food photography yang saat ini sedang digandrungi oleh kaum millennials, dan pembahasan dari sisi pecinta kuliner. Selain itu, acara ini juga menggelar Food Bazaar dan pameran aneka sambal Nusantara yang dapat dicicipi secara langsung oleh pengunjung secara gratis. Panitia khusus menyiapkan 25 jenis sambal dan dapat dicoba semua pengunjung.

Kali ini Podomoro University berkolaborasi dengan Samyang dan OPPO dalam mengadakan Kompetisi Masak Kreasi Samyang, Kompetisi Makan Mie Cabai dan Lomba Selfie atau Group untuk semua yang hadir. Diperkirakan sekitar 300 peserta hadir di acara Pesona Pedas Nusantara, terdiri dari pelajar dan mahasiswa, masyarakat sekitar area kampus, serta keluarga besar Podomoro University.