With restrictions easing up, and things starting to feel better, we are slowly weaning ourselves off of the habits we have stuck to during the period of staying at home. But some things are hard to shake off, especially when they have incorporated itself into our lives and leave an affectionate impression.
One of the common sights during the height of the pandemic were the metallic boxes on people’s Instagram stories — shiny and reflective, opening up to an array of glistening laminated pastries and viennoiseries. Spreading like wildfire from one Instagram story post to another, friends and families share their love and affection in the currencies of pastries — fueling Bakerman’s takeoff to become Jakarta’s most sought after pastries. Now, with people roaming the streets of Jakarta once again, it’s not a strange sight to see stylish pedestrians toting that iconic silver box. Everyone had to have their hands on one of these iconic boxes.
But more than just a box to check on a bucket list, Bakerman’s baked goods has imprinted itself as one of Jakarta’s most sought after pastry creations. No one does it better than Bakerman, and behind Bakerman is none other than Jakarta’s dessert luminary, Darryl Iswaratioso.
No stranger to the scene, Darryl is the genius behind Cacaote which set the bar for premium pastries back in the heydays of Senopati and the power behind Bakerman’s sister brand, Social Affair. Bakerman’s outlet is located at Ashta, District 8, and they have rarely seen low days. Day in, day out, their fans queued patiently for a coveted table, and food-delivery drivers are constantly picking up orders. Offering more than just baked goods, offers a wholesome all-day dining experience. From their tarts, pasta, and even burgers, guests are welcomed to relax and catch up with friends over a leisurely meal.
Of course, the star of Bakerman’s show are the array of their coveted croffles, ranging from the plain croffle and the cinnamon sugar croffle, Bakerman also offers other varieties such as the maple, Nutella, salted caramel, peanut butter & jelly, kaya toast, and biscoff lotus croffle. “We first launched the croffle back in August 2020, and we didn’t expect at all that it would pick up the way it did,” shared Darryl, “No one foreseen how the croffles would explode into becoming one of the staples of the lockdown period. “It all started from an idea from a friend who blurted out that we should put croissants into a waffle maker.” Some love it, some question it — but there is no denying the success of Bakerman, “Now, our bestselling croffles are selling more than a thousand pieces per day.”
What makes Bakerman’s croffles so special? For us, there’s something about how they retain the crispiness of the outer layers, and the chewiness on the inside, even after leaving it overnight. The way Bakerman’s croffle presents a beautiful texture that holds speaks volumes about how well-thought out and well-created their pastries are. “I’ve always been the fancy one,” he chuckled. The graduate of Le Cordon Bleu, Sydney is notorious for his meticulous way in preparing, presenting, and plating his pastry creations. “We started preparing the recipe for our croffle back in June 2020, at the height of the pandemic,” shared Darryl. He also shared that the earlier version of the croffle had his DNA all over the place as it was a plated dessert that was more on the avant-garde side, unlike Bakerman croffles that we know and love today.
Preparing for the opening of Bakerman at Jakarta’s hottest spot called for a thorough reading of the market, “Here at Ashta, we want to present something that is suitable for the people that are always on-the-go. Something artisanal yet modern, and uncompromising to the quality of the products.” Taking lessons from the previous ventures with St. Germain, Cacaote, and Social Affair has adequately prepared Darryl with, “In 2016, we opened Social Affair that was heavier on the neighborhood, more Australian feel. Now it has developed more into catering to the Indonesian taste buds, and we try to cater for a more local appeal with our latest creations of pandan and martabak flavors.” In his pastry portfolio is also Cacaote, an institution that is no stranger to the Senopati neighborhood that first opened in 2013, “With Cacaote, it was very posh. We really went after sophistication and precision, something that is totally the opposite of what we are doing now with Bakerman and Social Affair.” After Cacaote, Darryl opened St. Germain to cater to a larger market in Jakarta.
Committed to take their all day dining venue to the next level, Bakerman is cooking up more exciting projects in the kitchen, “We are preparing to open a speakeasy bar in the outlet,” shared Darryl as he gestures to a inconspicuous door at the backside of the restaurant – one can easily dismiss it as a service door. “The bar would comfortably host up to 20 people inside. Other than that, we are planning to open a Chinese restaurant by the end of 2021, also at Ashta.” Well definitely be on the lookout for the city’s next hottest openings!
Bakerman at Ashta, District 8
Ashta at District 8, GF 06-07