The incessant clanging sound of a spatula clashing against a wok has been ringing since the fried rice warung located opposite Alfamidi Panglima Polim opened its business for the day at 5pm. A constant stream of customers ordering its creations come and go, with the drizzly weather having no effect on the long queue of punters awaiting their takeaway.
The name of this popular joint is Nasi Goreng Apjay – its name Apjay is short for Apotik Jaya, the location where it is sited. According to one of the cooks, the place has been in operation for 11 years since 2005. Although the moniker Bakmi Jogja Pak Ivan is written on its menu, it seems that people have overlooked the name of its owner in favour of its whereabouts. This is why it is more familiar to the general public as Bakmi Jogja & Nasi Goreng Kebuli Apjay. Able to sell more than 200 portions each evening, it also has a branch up in Cipete.
Its menu is quite varied, with items such as Nasi Goreng Bumbu Kebuli Kambing (spicy mutton fried rice cooked in goat broth), Nasi Goreng Bumbu Kebuli Ayam (spicy chicken fried rice cooked in goat broth), Bakmi Godog (Javanese boiled noodles), Nasi Goreng Biasa (plain fried rice), Bakmi Rebus (boiled noodles), Sayap (chicken wings), and chicken liver and gizzards available. Besides its assortment of noodle and fried rice dishes, you could also have a go at the Martabak Manis (sweet stuffed pancake) and Martabak Telor (pan-fried pancake) that is sold right next to Nasi Goreng Kebuli Apjay. A period of waiting for your food to be prepared is a given as there is no shortage of customers at this establishment. However, you won’t have to bide your time for long as they cook their fried rice in large amounts.
My obvious choice for the day was its Nasi Goreng Kebuli Kambing – with additional omelette for good measure – and it took 20 minutes for me to get my hands on it. Its strong kebuli aroma immediately grabbed me by the nostrils, with its portion size enough to satisfy one’s famished tummy. True to its fragrant smell, the rather oily fried rice featured a very intense kebuli taste. And with the abundance of kebuli spices that it is cooked with, there is no need for any other flavouring to be added on. Instead of being served shredded and scattered on top of the fried rice, the mutton meat is cut into small pieces.
With its very piquant taste, it might take a while for you to get yourself together and make a return to this shop once you’ve given it a go – especially compared to other fried rice joints. However, it’d definitely be a unique culinary experience for you and your taste buds.
Jl. Panglima Polim IX, Kebayoran Baru,
T: 0812 835 9996
Open daily from 5pm-2am
Rp.35,000/US$2.60 per person