“Garnished with shredded celery on top, I found out that it only had six pieces of beef in total, which was a bit of a let-down.“
Despite the dominance of Gudeg (jackfruit-based dish) and Bakpia Pathok (Pathok sweet roll), there are other local dishes that one should sample whilst on a culinary sojourn in Yogyakarta. One in particular is the Soto Daging (beef soup) at Warung Soto Pak Marto, which can be found nearby the historical site of Taman Sari – the former royal garden of the Yogyakarta Sultanate.
According to one of the staff members there, Warung Soto Pak Marto has more than ten outlets operating across the city and Semarang. Having been in operation since 1960, itsSoto Daging has been a favourite of the locals for decades now, with its reputation warranted by how fast it sold out during my visit.
I turned up at around 2pm – two hours before it was due to close at 4pm – yet the place was still bursting at the seams with customers. I was among the last three customers who managed to get our orders taken before they stopped serving new patrons, which was an improvement from the previous day when I came at 3pm only to find that it was already closed. Take not, latecomers.
The Soto Daging here consists of rice, a bowl of beef broth, beef chunks, bean sprouts, and cabbage. Garnished with shredded celery on top, I found out that it only had six pieces of beef in total, which was a bit of a let-down. The viscous broth was a bit on the bland side, which prompted me to sprinkle a couple of pinches of salt and throw in a dollop of sambal in the hope that they could enhance its flavour. The result was magical – it now tasted fresh and zesty. In fact, it almost made up for the pitiful amount of beef given. Almost.
Open daily from 5.30am-4pm
Price: Rp.20,000/US$1.50 per person