20 July 2014


The Islamic holy month of Ramadhan is here! For some of you, especially you guys who fast, such culinary indulgence might be a threat: but certainly not in what Keraton does!

Bengawan, Keraton at the Plaza provides a sumptuous break fasting experience, featuring a wonderful array of Arabic, Mexican, and Indonesian delicacies at IDR 350k per person, including hot beverages and tajil! Now what are we waiting for? Let's have a look!

From the first look of their interior, you can already see that its concept is really resort-ish! This place uses tropical leafs and wooden color in flooring and furnishings as its natural element, also with furniture that emanates the ambiance of a high class tropical resort! Major love! The only thing I wondered was that the restaurant's name is too Indonesian and it's making me expecting a somewhat authentic Indonesian elements in its architectural concept.

Here's the awaited buffet table! Just seeing this might activate your saliva gland and bet you're holding your drools back!

Beautiful presentation! Amazed by how neat and appealing those foods are presented: Exquisite.

Wholewheat tomato bruschetta with grated mozzarella! Yummy! Fresh bread and fresh tomato will always make it right. Great start!

They also have a selection of sandwich here, which I didn't try, honestly! Don't wanna be too full because I wanna try all the main courses!

Look at these beautiful greens! It's like seeing a garden..that you can eat! BUT… I'm not on diet today so I passed through this one! Apologies to all salad lovers!

What they also have in this salad bar: our very own gado-gado! Indonesian traditional salad consisting usually of tofu, spinach, cabbage, and long beans, simmered in peanut sauce! This one comes in better plating but less ingredient combination. Looks good, but not as good as the "street authentic" Indonesian cuisine.

Looks like sashimi already! But wait, these are smoked fish that you could actually eat by themselves as they already have a flavor of their own. If you haven't tasted them before I gotta say they're sort of unique in aroma and a bit strong when it goes through the palate: It stays. Press some lemon and wash your palate afterwards to taste others, but these stuffs are surely lovely!

Unlike most sushi restaurants, they only provide us with classic Japanese sushi rolls and nigiri! Here you'll only see simple California and Philadelphia rolls of some sort, but don't be down! You might not get all fatty in heavenly mentai sauce and stuff but the freshness of each ingredient is guaranteed. That's basically all you need in classic sushi: ingredients.

From fresh salmon sashimi to salmon belly, white fish, ika, tobikko, they have it all! YAY!

Now this is the bomb!!! They have make-your-own quesadilla, a Mexican authentic dish made from crepe-like dough with fillings. Here you can choose the fillings such as lamb, chicken, beef, or even spicy paella rice!

Drools all over. I'm serious.

TA-DA! Looks so simple in presentation BUT I can only assure you that this tops all the other goods! It has the meat we chose PLUS melted mozzarella inside. I was savoring paradise! CRAZY GOOD!

Mexican (or Spanish?) tortilla! it's basically plain corn chips that are so crispy and very lightly salted, paired with some dips. Traditional south American snack!

The dipping sauces! It's classical Spanish set of salsa, sour cream, and guacamole sauce! Their taste don't actually vary much; mostly sour but with different accents of aroma and other elements that you could taste in your taste bud!

Here they got a variation of stuffs from regular noodles, rice vermicelli, or kway teow! Plus the classic toppings you could use: beef slices, shallots, wonton, etc.

Despite its pretty presentation, this is the only one dish that has failed me dearly. The meat wasn't fresh and reeks of stench. Let's just move on to other interesting dish, shall we? Others are great though so I figured this one's just me being unlucky! 

Some of you might not be familiar with this dish as it's a middle-eastern authentic dish! Kofta is middle eastern meatball/meatloaf, which consists of ground meat mixed with spices inside! A bit different from your usual meatloaf, it's more to the spices that give off different aroma and tasting, also that they not only use beef, but also lambs.


Look at these unique pots! Love how they care for the decorations making such a perfect dining ambiance!

My all-time Indonesian (Padang, to be specific) favorite cuisine! Rendang, or usually known as spicy meat stew, is originated from Minangkabau, Padang. If you've ever had a taste, you would yield and get absolutely astounded, awed by this dish's existence. No kidding! I can't actually explain this dish with simple "spicy and savory" as it is much more than that! This is one of a few Indonesian dishes that use complicated mix of spice, which gives birth to such rich flavor that's unfathomably great. Perfection.

This one's a classic childhood dish of mine that I could never forget. Perkedel is of Dutch origin and has been adopted by Indonesia as one of its traditional cuisine heritage. Mashed potato mixed with corned/ground beef then deep fried. Simple as that! Its taste is great for a simple dish: good amount of seasoning and ratio of meat, not like those in cheap restaurants where they use too little meat.

Curry! One of the best dishes made using coconut milk! Despite their fattening nutrition facts and all, I can't deny the deliciousness of coconut milk in a savory cuisine. This is the embodiment of the potential in such ingredient: The bomb! The richness of the crab is sealed shut within the shells as you suck these legs dry with the taste of great curry in between. YUMMM!!!

The bible said that men do not live on bread alone. ALL GONE when I arrived upon this stall! They have all things bread from the classic french bread, bagels, buns, multi grain, and so on! Whether you want to put the best butter OR the greatest selection of CHEESE (where I'm gonna bring you just NEXT), paradise is guaranteed! Their *omnomnom* text *nom* ure? You don't have to ask!

Now I can happily pass on in the cheese paradise. Haven't I told you that I'm a HUGE fan of cheese?! By huge I mean HUGE. Fanatic. Look at those beauties: mozzarella, gouda, brie, camembert, and many others!!! Put a plain cracker OR a neutral bread selection and BAM you're done! 


Desserts!! Starting from this simple custard filled pastry with grape, strawberry, and kiwi bits on top, you don't have to think another time! The key lies on the freshness of the fruit, puff pastry's texture and of course the vanilla custard within. All passed! Cold, soft, fluffy in sweet and sour goodness!


If you don't want even a hint of sourness in your dessert, here goes your cream caramel!! Silky caramel cream pudding WITH burnt caramel sauce on top. No let me correct that: SIMMERED! Swee-eett~!!


Wait, caramel after caramel?! The classical legend is here: creme brulee! Known as the "burnt cream", a perfectly made vanilla custard pudding with crispy burnt caramel on top!! This is a great example of creme brulee: It's just sweet on top of sweet, but the fusing of savory-sweet burnt caramel that's so agressively fragrant COMBINED with the soft, fluffy vanilla custard just creates a passionate paradise!

If your granny's not around, just give a chance to what they have in town! Classic, rustic apple tart with hints of cinnamon, strawberry slices, and grilled cheese! A good tart is determined by having a crunchy crust AND soft topping mix. I do think the crust could be better but I think this one passes!

Past its trend but here it is! Doesn't change the fact that seeing rainbow indulges your curiosity and saliva gland, huh? The taste is pretty much the same as the others though: sweet and savory from cream cheese and sugar, without much innovation on the cake itself except for the marshmallow on top.

I personally think this one's the most elegant and luxurious dessert dish of this place! Best presentation and really smooth texture that truly gives you a silky impression: it emanates luxury. Sweet, with a hint of citrus and dark chocolate compound which gives you just the right amount of bitter and sour, enough to make your tongue sing a harmony! Ultimate indulgence!


It's basically rolled cake dough with cream spiral as its "adhesive"! With crumbles on top, it's a combination of taste from a brownie-like chocolate cake, vanilla cream, and crumbles. You get the best mix of crunchiness and softness!


Honeydew melon bits on sweetened coconut milk! The mix of sweetness in coconut milk and fruit was harmonious! It's fresh and the creaminess from the coconut milk isn't too overwhelming, making it a well balanced dish. Well done!


Unfortunately can't judge you quite objectively on this part! Not exactly a big fan of Southeast Asian desserts since they most usually use coconut milk and mixing it with something REALLY filling such as cassava or something similar. Well, gotta tell you that this one is okay since it comes in small portion and that it's still on the fresh part instead of being too filling!


Now this is what I was talking about: Didn't try it because it made my tummy full in just one go. A lot of people like it though! I'm trying to be objective in terms of taste so it's not that my taste bud is always one to follow: taste varies and that's why we're all unique in our own way :p


The white one is called Mouhai Abieh and the other one's Balousha. I've never heard of it before as well! Indonesia doesn't have a great reference of Mediterranean cuisine and here at Bengawan they do have them! But I have a little confession to make: I was too full to try it..Sorry and let's get moving!


Another Mediterranean snack! Peanuts covered with sugar and caramelized honey, then wrapped in thin layer of pastry! Do I have to explain? Simply crunchy sweet goodness! Tastes similar to "ting-ting", a snack under the brand of Garudafood, in my opinion :)

There are others! Traditional Indonesian snacks in a high tea manner. Class.

Gosh, even their fruit cuts are so fresh! Crunchy, juicy, fresh, and ultimately delicious! Made me thank the mother nature once again that such delicacies just hanging right on a tree branch (or vines, or other plant forms). YUM!

It's needless to say that I'm blown away. I've written all my impressions up above and here I am, full and satisfied, enjoying the majestic view that's also part of the Keraton Hotel. Thank you Bengawan and have a great holy month to all of you peeps!

Bengawan, Signature Restaurant

Keraton at The Plaza, 7th Fl.
Jl. MH. Thamrin No. 15
Jakarta Pusat
DKI Jakarta 10350, Indonesia
(021)5068 0000



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