Discovering REAL Indonesian Dishes

If you think you know enough about Indonesian dishes, think again, because Aromanis Restaurant offers a unique flavor experience that can surprise even a native Indonesian.

THERE WAS a time, upon hearing new Indonesian restaurants opening, that I have switched off my high expectations just because most of them usually serve similar menus to other restaurants. Some dishes like deep fried fish with sambal, or seafood gulai are comforting, yet they are run of the mill.    

Fortunately, the new trend in Jakarta is about going local. This is something that many culinary enthusiasts have been trying to push for years and now the seeds are slowly starting to grow. Many chefs and restaurant owners now focus on authentic dishes of their city or province, but some also take it further by taking the ‘going local’ theme to represent all of Indonesian cuisine culture.

Aromanis restaurant which first opened in Menteng, Jakarta, is one restaurant that has put their whole heart and spirit into attempting to bring lesser known Indonesian dishes from all across Indonesia to the forefront. They just opened their second restaurant in Senopati area, South Jakarta, where I immediately visited after hearing many good reviews from friends.

One idea that resonated in my mind of my dinner experience at Aromanis was their commitment to serve unique dishes, some that I believe many Indonesians are not yet familiar with or don’t even know exist, and also some dishes come with their unique twists.

Take for example the Kepiting Soka Rujak Pomelo, which is soft-shell crab dish using rujak and pomelo. There are many soft shell crab dishes but to serve it with rujak and pomelo is quite unique. Also, Oseng Kecipir Koyor, stir-fried wing beans with lumps of beef fat, not for the faint hearted. Tumis Bunga Kulit Melinjo, stir-fried flower of Melinjo fruit, many know emping the crackers made from the Melinjo seed but aren’t familiar with the flower of the same plant. Udang Galah Lempah Nanas, river prawns with pineapple sauce, and Serimping Cabe Hijau Tauco, local scallops with green chili and fermented soybeans, and many more that are fun and unique Indonesian dishes.

They also shared that it is a hassle to collect all the authentic ingredients for their dishes, but at the same time is also a great pleasure for them. They like the challenge. With that kind of commitment, this surely will not be my last time to visit them.



Jalan Suryo No. 42, Senopati


T: +62 21 725 0873, 720 4567


Written by Yosua Yanuard Photographs by Yosua Yanuard June 7, 2018.