Piping hot water, bowls of noodles, and a crowd that were either eating or waiting for their order to arrive welcomed me during one morning at Bakmi Jhon, which is located on Jalan Sampit Satu. Don’t go looking for a restaurant if you come here, as the only thing you’ll find is a handcart serving chicken noodles by the side of the road that is frequently teeming with customers.
As I waited for my noodles, I had a chat with Mas Rahman, who is one of the cooks at the place. He’s only been working for the last three years, yet Bakmi Jhon was established in 1997. Many people are willing to queue for long periods of time just to have a taste of its noodles. Mas Rahman told me that they could sell approximately 800 portions in just a day.
My order for the day was its Mi Komplit (complete noodles), which comprises meatballs, fried wontons, chicken meat, dumplings, and mushroom. Although it appears like your typical serving of chicken noodles, its noodles are smooth and succulent. The boneless and skinless chicken meat are quite sizeable as well. Bakmi Jhon also offers a jumbo-sized portion for the price of Rp.37,000.
Before I made my move, I inquired to Mas Rahman regarding the difference between Bakmi Jhon and its equivalents. The affable man didn’t hold back in disclosing the business’ secrets by telling me that their use of fish sauce is the key in lending their signature dishes their trademark savoury taste – a method that has been employed by founder Jhon since the day Bakmi Jhon was founded.
Jl. Sampit Satu, Melawai, Jakarta
T: 0812 991 2932
Open daily from 7.30am-3.30pm
Rp.25,000/$1,86 per person