June 10, 2011

Jakarta again

I mentioned in an earlier post that I’ve not had the chance to go to Jakarta in my previous company, and my trip then was the first. And just two months after the first, I found myself in Jakarta again!

I was a little apprehensive about this trip, coming so soon after Osama’s killing. We even had to change our event, involving more than 150 delegates, from JW Marriot to Mandarin Oriental, just a week before the scheduled date, as our company issued a security alert to avoid all US-brand hotels.

But it was business as usual, with nary any “abnormal” activities. But we did had a minor scare on the last day. We were having an internal regional meeting with about 15 people in the room when suddenly we heard something that sounded like a small explosion, and felt the room vibrating! Everyone started to look at one another but we carried on. This was followed by two successful “explosions” and our Indonesian colleagues decided to check things out with the hotel. Turned out, some guys at the gym one floor up, were doing something with the bar bells, and dropping them onto the floor. Phew!

Anyway, since I only spent all my time at the hotel and only went out during dinners, this post is about just that – the hotel and the restaurants we patronized.

The luxurious Mandarin Oriental Jakarta

Harum Manis serves authentic Indonesian food in a romantic ambience. The restaurant decoration is inspired by Javanese traditional home. The name Harum Manis is derived from the sweet cotton candy which can be found in traditional markets.

L to R (top): lumpia (spring roll), otak-otak (fish cake), gado-gado
L to R (bottom): stir-fried kangkung, gurame goreng (deep fried fish), satay 1-meter

Kembang Goela is a fine dining restaurant serving Indonesian home cooking with Dutch influence. The cozy interior, set in Javanese ambience and decor, coupled with the chandeliers and antiques, completes the elegant look.

L to R: deep fried spaghetti as snacks, drink with lots of chewy stuff inside, jus alpukat (avocado juice with chocolate syrup), the elegant menu

Clockwise from top left: dendeng balado (crispy fried beef slices), deep fried spring chicken, ikan kerapu bakar, stir fried four angle beans

True to its mission of bringing the majestic Majapahit Kingdom era back to life, antique pieces and artefacts from the Archipelago can be found throughout the premise of Lara Djonggrang, giving the restaurant a mystical and romantic ambience. This was my favourite among the three restaurants, both in terms of decor, and food.

L to R (top): gado-gado, corn pancake, vegetarian platter
L to R (middle): curry fish head, stir-fried vegetable, grilled chilli fish
L to R (bottom): deep fried spring chicken, grilled prawns, sate lilit

And as as luck would have it, I was in Jakarta again the last two days – that makes it my third trip to Jakarta within three months!


MeRy said...

very nice hotel...next time should drop by Medan,my hometown..another great place for makan-makan.

Small Kucing said...

nice place and food

A Mom's Diary said...

MeRy - you're from Medan? I was there 2-3 years ago but didn't really manage to explore much.

Small Kucing - yup, food was surprisingly very nice.