Wednesday, July 20, 2016

One Afternoon at Old Town White Coffee Pakubuwono

It’s probably not too much to say that OldTown White Coffee is legendary. While our first encounter is at supermarket shelf, these days the Malaysian brand has expanded into full-serviced restaurants. Opening its latest stand-alone outlet in Pakubuwono, South Jakarta, we’re honor to be part of the crowd.

This is Ruth and her late-afternoon coffee adventure.

I had known that OldTown White Coffee had turned into more than bags of ready-to-make coffee off the supermarket shelf, when it was first opened at the airport. I remembered excitedly reading the letters on the closed boards behind the immigration line. When it opened another counter outside the arrival area, I visited the place. But just for coffee. Well, this brand introduced me to white coffee, so when they open a shop, I would order coffee.

Never had I imagined they actually have tasty food.

So when invitation arrived for an afternoon breakfasting at their newly opened branch, I was excited. Coming off Malaysian origin, the place served Peranakan dishes, from chicken rice, Hor Fun, Pan Mee, Egg Noodle and Nasi Lemak.

Every meal is a surprise, even though they seem like your neighborhood dishes on the menu. The first to arrive on our table is Steam Ginger Chicken Rice (52k), rice with chicken and ginger sauce, served on a closed bowl. Steam blows out as I opened the cover. This dish becomes my comfort food right away, with subtle ginger flavor and soft but tasty chicken. 

The comes the rice couple: Nasi Lemak with Fried Chicken and Old Town Rendang Beef Rice. If I had come to this place by myself, I would probably have a hard time choosing between beef and chicken. Crispy fried rice stands on the side as the center of attention on the white plate. The rendang isn’t as spicy as those found in several Padangnese restaurant, so this might serve better to some taste buds. The two rice dishes came with sambal on the side.

However, my favorite rice dishes of the night are Hainanese Chicken Chop Rice (52k) and Hainanese Fish Fillet Rice (56k) Unlike the Nasi Lemak, these ones are more simple in presentation but as tasty. The Chicken Chop Rice reminds me with a mix of Fuyunghai and Oyster Omelette. Crispy on the outside, paired with Hainanese Rice, it’s definitely an instant steal from the menu. The fish has this tasty sauce that you’d love to have more of, than what’s poured on your plate. Both chicken and fish dish also come with a spicy option.

Surprise, there’s another rice dish that you shouldn’t miss: BBQ Chicken Rice (45k), which comes in pretty “hat” of sunny side up egg.

Another highlight of this eatery is its noodle which comes in different shapes and flavors. And there’s one that caught my attention right away. Hor Fun, a thick flat Chinese noodle made of rice flour, is authentically adapted from Ipoh. Curry Hor Fun is the popular one, but if you’re not into curry dishes, there are the ones with gravy and plain chicken. Another noodle on the table is Dry Curry Pan Mee (49k), which is served on a plate with a bowl of broth soup on the side. BBQ Chcken Dry Egg Noodles with Fried Wonton (49k) are perfect for fried noodle lovers like me.

In Indonesia, OldTown White Coffee has more than 20 outlets, with the one in Pakubuwono being the latest one to open in the capital city. Wow, I have missed a lot apparently. So, what is a visit to a coffee place without actually tasting its coffee? So I ordered a cup of coffee for the ending, and soon arrived the familiar aroma in the air. The coffee here is made from their well-known powdered coffee you encountered on supermarket stalls because Old Town White Coffee uses the same beans and roasting process. It’s a relaxing ending to a fun-filled late-afternoon meal.

Next time I’d be more than happy to visit during the day, when the light is up. I can imagine the light coming through the front window. The restaurant also serves light meals like kaya toast and half-boiled eggs- my kind of breakfast whenever I’m in Singapore and Malaysia. Now, whenever I feel like avoiding the mall crowds, I can easily come to Pakubuwono and enjoy my day.

Where is this?
Oldtown White Coffee-Pakubuwono
Jl. Hang lekir X No.20
Jakarta Selatan

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