Oh Hi, Hello my dear foreigner! Welcome to this little guide about What to Eat When You Visit Jakarta for The First Time, I make a lots of foreign friend when I studied aboard. Most of them ask me what places to eat that i recommend them to try when they visit my hometown which is Jakarta. So i decided to write a little guide about place and restaurant to eat for your first dining experience in Jakarta.

Firstly you must know, that all the places that I will recommend are mostly a well known restaurant, and you can find it easily on local shopping mall. Why ? because for your health reason? yeah maybe. I honestly must say that for first timer to directly eat street food poses a lot of risk of having a stomach aches on the first day. Because most of them are spicy ( Indonesian spicy ) and some of them are not too hygiene. So adapting to a bit dirtier country little by little is my recommendation, especially when your origin country is more hygienic than Indonesia, eg. America, Japan, Australia, etc. But feel free to eat whatever you want !

If you are from developed country like Indonesia, i think you’ll be alright, just enjoy everything you can eat !

If you not convinced you can read some article here about our sambal (chili) here
“You like spicy food? Forget it. Indonesian chili is different than Europe’s. Explore the various red and green spices carefully. Otherwise you might start crying while eating and your hands will burn like fire for hours.” via TheJakartaPost

Please be aware that what I suggested is not a budget friendly options, starting around 6$ to 15$ per person.

Let’s get to the list :

1. Bakmie GM

Firstly open at year 1959, Noodles is their specialty, you can find a Indonesian noodles here, most of them are delicious, they also provide simple Indonesian Chinese foods, feel free to try their Bakmie Ayam Lada Cha-Cha or Bakmie Special GM Pangsit Rebus. Its one of my fave.

Website : http://www.bakmigm.com/

2. Java Kitchen

You can try our famous Gado Gado here, then the Tumpeng Mini is recommend also, its kinda fancy looking yellow rice! Tahu Telor is also one of my fave here, lastly why not try your first Nasi Goreng here ? Java kitchen is recommended for healthy choice, their food are free from MSG ( as they mention it )

3. Sate Khas Senayan

Firstly open at 1974, their speciality is Satay! yes meat skewer something like that, Their Satay Ayam Bumbu Blora is my recommendation, a well grilled chicken satay topped with sweet peanut sauce, definetly you need to try. They also provied lot of other Indonesian authentic food such as Nasi Uduk, Nasi Begana, Nasi Bali, feel free to try anything you want !

4. Remboelan

Indonesian Soulfood, its their tagline, you can find a lot of Indonesian style food here, starting from appetizer to dessert they have lots of them. I recommend the Tempe mendoan as an appetizer, than you can have Nasi Bakar for the main course and the Dessert is Es Campur, feel free to order !

Website :http://www.remboelan.com/

5. Tesate

Its the same group with the Sate Khas Senayan, most of food are similar, Its the premium one, as the Sate Khas Senayan is the more general level. You can order their Nasi Tutug for the main course and add some additonal menu to make it complete. You definetly can find your favourite here.

Website : https://sarirasa.co.id/tesate/home

6. Garuda

Garuda is a Minang and Melayu based on Medan, its similar with Padangnese food, Garuda is recommended because its taste is more soft I think, Its suitable almost for everyone. But you can definetly find something spicy here. Padang style food is something you need to experience when you visit Indonesia Jakarta, you will be greeted with lots of plates filled of food, and you can choose what you want to eat. Kinda like buffet on your tabble, kinda, sort of.

7. Sederhana

The most generic Padangnese food in Jakarta, you can find a lot of them on maps, but mostly located outside shopping mall. Its similar with number 6, you cant go wrong with one of them.

8. Bebek Tepi Sawah

Image credit : Tribunnews

A Balinese stye crispy fried duck, maybe a little introduction before you go to Bali, and meet their famous Mattah Bali Chili style sauce. Not only duck you can also opted for chicken, their speciality is on their selection of chilli sauce.

8 of them is not the most famous nor the most delicious restaurant. But all of them is considered my safe-list for my friends as an introductory food. If you already adapted to our taste bud, you can now try experimenting with streets food and smaller vendor, they have a lot of fantastic foods also. Go wild my friends ! I hope you all have a great experience in Jakarta !


disclaimer : Most of pictures are sourced directly from their website, but don’t worry I already tried all of them.

Updated : 03 April 2019