“Well made and with no traces of the pungent aroma that would usually come from cooked bamboo sprouts, these are the sort of Loenpia that would leave you begging for more.“
Semarang is famous for a number of things, chief among them its Loenpia Semarang (Semarang spring roll). If you ever find yourself in the city and are looking to sample this local delicacy, then I would suggest making your way to Loenpia Mbak Lien. A time-honoured joint that features a Chinese-Javanese heritage, Loenpia Mbak Lien is located inside Gang Grajen on Jalan Pemuda and can easily be spotted from the prominently displayed yellow-coloured signboard placed in front of the alleyway right across Sri Ratu Plaza. FYI, they also have another outlet on Jalan Pandanaran.
They have a selection of flavours on offer, including prawn, chicken, and a special mix of both. You can also have your Loenpia fried or unfried, depending on how you like it. Besides its signature food, the eatery also has a myriad of snacks available, such as peanuts, crackers, and the local delicacy that is Wingko (coconut-based pancake-like snack).
I paid a visit to the shop while I was in the area last month, and ordered a couple of its special-mix Loenpia to go. However, as I was waiting for my order, it started to rain heavily. As I would be a wet mess if I decide to go as soon as my Loenpia was done, I opted to stay there and enjoy the scrumptious spring roll in the dry surrounding of the shop instead.
Featuring bamboo sprouts, fried egg, chicken and prawn as its fillings, there are no significant differences between a friend and an unfried Loenpia flavour-wise, except for the salty aftertaste that comes from the crunchy wrapping of the fried version. Well made and with no traces of the pungent aroma that would usually come from cooked bamboo sprouts, these are the sort of Loenpia that would leave you begging for more. A little tip: dip your Loenpia into the Wijo sauce (starch-based sauce) to get the best out of it.
Jl. Pemuda, Gang Grajen No. 1
Semarang, Central Java
T: 024 358 0734
Open daily from 8am-5pm
Rp.13,000/US$0.95 per piece