I have always believed that there are stories behind the dishes served on a plate. Food, to me, is a form of art, and chefs often go beyond to create the best culinary experiences possible, sharing their stories and their deep love for food.
After several successful years in the industry, including the establishment of Markt, Chef Patrese Vito has decided to introduce an alter ego to channel his passion for fine dining. Located in the same place, The Pantry by Markt now serves as a platform for Chef Vito to express his love and stories through a meticulously curated and refined culinary offering.
“I have a deep passion for fine dining, and I also offer private dining experiences,” says Chef Patrese Vito, the owner of Markt and The Pantry by Markt. His culinary journey began at Teatro Gastroteque Bali, followed by stints at BLANCO par Mandif in Ubud and an ultra-luxurious Indonesian Fine Dining Restaurant. Afterward, he gained valuable experience working under Chef Joel Robuchon at his three Michelin-starred property, Robuchon au Dome, in Macau.
“At first, we didn’t plan to open The Pantry. Our initial intention was to focus on brunch,” he recalls. Alongside Chiria Leozha, who manages Markt and owns Crusty Loaf Bakery, where she is responsible for Markt’s baked goods and pastry selections; they decided to expand their brunch offerings due to high demand. This expansion led them to repurpose the space that was once the Crusty Loaf Kitchen to accommodate more brunch guests. However, Chef Vito’s deep-seated passion for fine dining soon resurfaced.
Considering his background in fine dining, Chef Vito was still actively involved in private dining events, which posed a logistical challenge. “When I do private dining, I can’t be at Markt to oversee everything because I need time to prepare and travel to people’s homes,” he explains. To address this challenge, the idea of creating a private dining room within The Pantry by Markt emerged. “For me, it’s more convenient because I don’t have to transport everything to people’s homes and back. It’s less hassle, and the food can be prepared in advance without constant transportation,” he concludes.
Chef Vito’s cuisine is an exquisite fusion of European elegance with delightful Asian flavors. For him, cooking is not just a profession but a way of life, a medium through which he shares happiness at the dining table, transforming each moment into unforgettable memories. With an impressive culinary background that includes training at the luxurious Robuchon au Dôme in Macau and his role as Head Chef at The View, Fairmont Jakarta, Chef Vito showcases his exceptional talent in every dish he serves, creating a dining experience that captivates the senses.
“It’s a delightful blend of my culinary passions,” he shares. “In essence, it’s French at its core, as my culinary journey began in a French restaurant, and that influence runs through all the techniques and foundations. Yet, you’ll always find an Asian touch, a reflection of my Indonesian heritage. It’s a harmonious fusion that caters to the Asian palate because it’s simply what I adore eating.” When one indulges in Chef Vito’s creations, the flavors seamlessly blend into a symphony that resonates with Asian tastes.
Take, for instance, the consommé, an ingenious transformation of French onion soup. “This consommé has its roots in the French culinary tradition,” he elaborates. With bold, spice-infused flavors, it takes on an essence reminiscent of Indonesia’s Soto Betawi. “But when you taste it, it resembles Soto Betawi quite closely,” Chef Vito admits with an amused tone, finding the coincidence rather delightful. “I added an abundance of spices to the consommé to enhance its flavors, and it unexpectedly took on the familiar taste of something I really like (Soto Betawi). So, it has inadvertently become a cherished part of our menu.”
The menu predominantly features European classics. For instance, their carbonara adheres to the traditional recipe, incorporating eggs and a generous amount of cheese. However, a unique twist emerges with the addition of Japanese sea urchin paste and ikura. The consommé, inspired by French onion soup, undergoes a transformation with the inclusion of tender beef cheek and a comte cheese foam subtly infused with coconut milk. This unexpected blend yields a taste reminiscent of Soto Betawi, a delightful surprise crafted by Chef Vito to offer something distinct from the ordinary.
“I like to make people wonder when they eat, ‘Oh, this is a consommé.’ So, they are expecting a regular consommé, right? But when they taste it, it’s something different and even better than the original. That’s the goal, and I hope it delivers.”
For the main course, Chef Vito enthusiastically shared his love for carbonara. “I love eating carbonara a lot. The normal carbonara in Indonesia is often heavy with cream, which I don’t really prefer. But I truly appreciate the original carbonara made with eggs and Italian cheese.”
In crafting the dessert, Chef Vito and Chiria worked together to present a delightful Tarte Au Citron, a lemon tart. Originally, the lemon tart was created by Chiria, while Chef Vito added the final touch by expertly garnishing the dessert, showcasing his penchant for creating intricate garnishes, including tuiles and other fine dining elements from his original repertoire.
Despite offering a private fine dining experience, Chef Vito maintains a casual and welcoming ambiance at the Pantry by Markt. He recognizes the Jakarta Markt’s desire for flexibility and a relaxed dining atmosphere. “People don’t necessarily want a stiff atmosphere where they have to sit up straight. Here, it’s all about flexibility and casual dining. You can leave your formal trousers and dresses behind; shorts and sandals will do just fine. Yet, you’ll enjoy dishes crafted from high-quality ingredients. It creates an intimate setting,” he explains.
The Pantry’s layout facilitates interaction among guests. Tables inside the rooms can be connected, allowing diners to converse freely about the food and more. The intimate size of the venue contributes to this sense of togetherness.
“I get to build a connection with our guests. We can discuss the food and its inspirations. It’s a warm and welcoming experience, akin to having your personal chef cooking in your very own kitchen. Overall, it creates a fantastic ambiance,” he shares.
The Pantry by Markt
Ruko Simprug Gallery unit U, Jl. Teuku Nyak Arif No.10, Jakarta 12220