Jakarta’s dining scene is hotting up these days. My search for something high-end led me to this much-touted restaurant at the penthouse of MD Place in Jakarta – serving modern Japanese cuisine influenced by the Korean heritage of the celebrity chef Akira Back, a former professional snowboarder. He was named “Best Chef In Las Vegas” by Las Vegas Weekly, and debuted Yellowtail Japanese Restaurant at Bellagio Resort there.
I’m always sceptical about such hype, and my fears were heightened when I saw the decor – achingly hip with dim lighting and gorgeous design – more befitting a nightclub than a restaurant.
The table setting is classily done.
Then came the food. The chilled corn soup with Togarashi (Japanese red chilli pepper) popcorn and avocado cream made a very refreshing starter.
The star of the show has to be the Tuna Pizza with ponzu mayo and micro shiso was amazingly innovative; fresh tuna on crispy pizza crust dripping with truffle oil. This is probably one of the most innovative dish I’ve come across in recent memory; simple but yet so full of subtle flavours.
So was the AB Tacos with Wagyu Kalbi in spicy tomato ponzu; again beautifully presented in a special aluminium taco holder. I love the zing of of piquancy from the beef, aided by the green chilli.
And finally, the Korean Galbi rolls of braised short rib with coleslaw was made to be instagramed. The rice was moist, and the savoury and tender braised beef was nicely balanced by the sweetness of the coleslaw.
Th ice-cold Bintang beer was a good companion for the food.
The hype is well deserved. Don’t miss if you are in Jakarta.
MD Place Bulding, Penthouse Level, Jl. Setiabudi Selatan No. 7,
Setiabudi, Jakarta, Indonesia
Phone: +62 857 – 777 88 777