Jakarta: Pempek Megaria


“Its tantalising appearance made my mouth water from the moment I laid my eyes on it. My first bite revealed the smooth taste of the mackerel that spread equally across my palate.”

Word on the street is that Pempek Megaria, which is located within the Metropole Theater Complex, serves the best Pempek (savoury fishcake originated from Palembang) in town. Despite having passed by the shop every time I pay a visit to the theatre to catch a flick, not even once have I stopped by Pempek Megaria to sample its offerings. Well, that had to change, so I specifically planned to make my way there to prove that the rumours were true.

As I remembered, the shop was located at the front end of the building, but when I got there, all I could see was an empty spot that was up for renovation. After asking a few people, I was informed that it has been relocated to the food court at the back of the building.
It can be quite a laborious task to find a vacant table at the food court, especially with the likes of Es Teler and Ayam Bakar Megaria all occupying a spot there. Fortunately, not long after I got there, a couple of customers stood up and left. Lucky me.

It took around five to six minutes for my order of Pempek to arrive. Its tantalising appearance made my mouth water from the moment I laid my eyes on it. My first bite revealed the smooth taste of the mackerel that spread equally across my palate. It didn’t taste fishy at all too. A relative of mine from Palembang once told me that the cuko(vinegar-based sauce) that comes along with your Pempek would define whether it’s a good Pempek or a bad one. What you’ll be getting here is a balanced mix of vinegar, brown sugar, and chilli – utterly refreshing and impeccably delectable.

If your visit here sees you having to jostle with other customers for a table, fret ye not as Pempek Megaria, which was founded in 1989, operates another branch over at Matraman.

Jl. Pegangsaan Timur No. 21
Cikini, Central Jakarta
Open daily from 12am-9pm
Rp. 20,000/ US$ 1.60


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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