Spice Up Your Life

Spending her childhood surrounded with various sweet dishes in the heart of Central Java did not stop Florentina Puri Cahyani from having a fondness for spicy treats. This led to the young entrepreneur starting up her own business in selling Sambal Roa Maitua, which is her own brand of the Manadonese Sambal Roa (spicy smoked garfish chilli paste). Every so often she would comb through eateries in her current hometown of Jakarta to fulfil her craving for spicy food, and here are her top five picks.

Five Favourite Dishes and Where to Find Them

Warung Tiki Taka
I found this roadside warung four years ago when I was still residing near Jalan Fatmawati. No other shop in Jakarta has come close to its hot and refreshing sambal. My all-time favourites are its Lele Goreng (fried catfish) and Bandeng Goreng (fried milkfish).

Jl. Fatmawati,
Jakarta
Open daily from 7pm-12am

Mie Ayam Yunus
The fact that it is located nearby my house isn’t the only reason why I love Mie Ayam Yunus to bits. Its tasty Mie Ayam (chicken noodle) along with its juicy beef tendon meatballs are to die for.

Jl. Tebet Barat Dalam VIIID, No. 1,
next to Pasar Tebet, South Jakarta
T: 021 7094 5363
Open daily from 9am-8.30pm

Nasi Bebek Mak Isa
Nasi Bebek Mak brings to the table a more complete experience compared to the overrated Bebek Kaleyo. The combination of its savoury fried duck and tasty hot sambal is a match made in heaven.

Jl. Raya Bekasi Timur No. 44,
Cipinang, East Jakarta
Open daily from 5am-10pm

Bakso Titoti
Bakso Titoti offers probably the best beef tendon meatballs I’ve ever tried. The fact that it adds cow’s trotters into the mix is the cherry on top.

Jl. Pasar Minggu Raya No. 1,
South Jakarta
T: 0813 2927 5321
Open daily from 9.30am-9.30pm

Dapur Solo Ny. Swann
Its Selat Solo (Solo-style beef stew with vegetables in sweet-and-sour sauce) reminds me of my mum’s cooking back home in Sragen.

Jl. Panglima Polim 1, No. 59,
South Jakarta
T: 021 722 2311
Open daily from 9am-8.30pm


A die-hard fan of authentic Indonesian delights who loves the idea of travelling to the cradle of those enticing local treats. Yet, you might often find this young lad busy with his guitar – be it alone in his room or, sometimes, on stage.

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