..It's a journey after all.. : Food and Travel Blog based in Jakarta: Bebek Bengil and Lara Djonggrang Night Out!

Wednesday, 18 January 2012

Bebek Bengil and Lara Djonggrang Night Out!

Basically, last saturday night, I went out with Sara, Andreas and Ivan. After an hour of waiting in front of Sara's house, we finally went off to hit the night out.. At first I was planning to try out this new place which served Netherlands dishes, but more to that later.. Since it was already pretty late, I aborted the plan of going there and we changed destinations instead..

At first, I thought we're going to Chilli's in Sarinah. But we were kind of sick of it (I didn't mean SICK sick, I just didn't mean it! CHILLI'S IS SO ADDICTIVE!! LONG LIVE CHILLI'S!!)

Ehem... Anyway, I was driving and I have this 'My Car, My Rules' policy. Instead of going to Sarinah, I turned the wheels to Menteng instead and TADAAAA... went to eat Bebek Bengil (click to go to their website)

I haven't eaten anything on that day so eating half a duck WAS NOT A PROBLEM AT ALL!!
(challenge accepted)

Still manage to ask Ivan to snap a picture of me while waiting in the car

This veggies are green beans with bean sprouts cooked with shredded coconuts, very rich and savory! Most of all, its taste really is the real BALI! Oh and I love the little pieces of shallots, chilly, tomatoes with oil in the upper left dish.. I am addicted to shallots!

Half a crispy duck.. The highlight of the night! The meat is tender and you can literally eat the some of the bones as they are very crispy. It doesn't look like much but it really is big in reality..! They have been serving it since 1990.. WHAT COULD EVER GO WRONG IN SUCH A LEGENDARY RECIPE?!

Just compare it to the size of my face! I always compare the size of the food with the size of my face.. and I'm not sure why I do it.. -___-"

Nasi Bali that Ivan ordered.. See the shallots in the middle? YES I LOVE IT! Basically, this dish is filled with rice, chicken satay, the green beans and bean sprouts veggies like in the picture above, corn fritters, and shredded duck with one more type of meat. If I'm not mistaken, it was rendang.. 

Andreas striking a pose while waiting

THE EVIL LADY! DON'T BELIEVE HER INNOCENT LOOK IN THIS PICTURE! While we were driving there, she said she was full because she ate with Andreas already (Making me wait in the car while SHE ATE barbarically and she knew that we were going to eat!) lol.. The actual reason was that they were waiting for her Mom at the saloon lah! That's why it's taking such a long time for them to get home.. and she was too hungry to wait. But going to this place didn't stop her and Andreas from ordering the crispy duck.. IT WAS JUST LEGENDARY TO BE MISSED!

Andreas ordered this dessert. I don't really remember the name except that I think it's called Black Russian something something.. It contains Russian whiskey I guess. As I have never been a fan of any alcoholic drinks, I only took a bite, found out that it was bitter, let Andreas finished it.. But coming from a non-alcoholic fan, it tastes fantastic in your mouth. The taste is really balanced between the sweetness and the bitterness. I guess, if I were a person who regularly enjoy a drink or two, this dessert would be the BOMBDIGITTY!

Going to this place fulfill the gap of missing Bali. The moment you stepped inside the restaurant, the place resembles a true Balinese restaurant. The waiter and waitress are very friendly. Maybe if you give them extra tip, they will start talking with Balinese accent to make you feel like you're actually in Bali.. (I'm just randomly saying) 

I love this placeeeeee.. I rate it 9/10 for the food, ambiance, service.. Check out their web to find more information, such as the history of the name Bebek Bengil, contact number, etc.. If you're a fan of Balinese food, going here will definitely satisfy your taste buds. On that night, this place really made me nostalgic of my nights in Bali. As I said earlier, a true Balinese restaurant..

After done eating, we all felt like we're just not done yet.. So we headed to Lara Djonggrang (click to go to their FB). We all have heard the spooky stories regarding to this place and we all were very curious about it. I have once visited the place and was really fascinated (mixed with scared).

We all are too full so I only ordered one dessert and Andreas ordered a mojito.. This restaurant / bar / cafe served imperial Indonesian cuisine. If you go to their FB account, you can see the photos of their dishes. They seperate every side dish in little plates. The very first time I went there, I ordered a dish and believe me, every little side dishes on the little plates were like bombs of treasure in your mouth. They all resembles different textures, tastes, aromas.. Ahhh, just the perfect balance in a dish..

The moment you parked your car in front of the place, you can see a big 300 years old banyan tree with its long hanging roots scattered around the free space in front. It's scary enough! Once we stepped in, and for the second time, I was very fascinated and amazed. The place is basically a house and each rooms has different concepts and decorations. So many antique artistic decorations inside that house. But here's the catch, I once heard that each object has their own "master", if you know what I mean..

Enough talk, let me just show you the crazy pictures we took there..

The bar is pretty dark so this candles are put in each table. I don't know why but I just get the creepy vibe out of it..

Snap Snap picture time


This is banana cooked with palm sugar, raisins, and served with a layer of thin crepe and coconuts. Okay, this dessert might not be a true Indonesian dish, you can say it's a fusion but it does taste good!!

Here's the things about my best friends.. We like to create weird poses and call it a trendsetter pose.. So while waiting for the food, the culprit was trying to convince and teach Sara how to make this pose.. 

Yes, this is the newest trendsetter pose! Look how happy they were just being able to do this.. and it's quite hard to copy the hand gestures.. It's just not as easy as it looks.. 

Not long after seeing them, somehow I found it really fun and joined them instead.. SUCCESS! (btw, Sara's face is EPIC)

Now this guy right here, trying to blend in, but obviously it was an epic FAILLLLL! lol

Okay, I deliberately took this picture to show you guys the interior of the bar. We were at the very corner of the room but what's behind Ivan was the bar (with 5 straight lights on the left of his head). The ceiling looks like it's really an old house which just add another level of creepiness to the place. I also found out that some of the tiles in this place were taken from demolished houses in villages and they re-used it.. talking about recycling, how cool is that?

Not to mention that the bar is also filled with paintings of Middle Eastern men. I'm not sure who they were but what I know is that it is scary. The other side of the room opposite to us, there's a side of the wall painted but I didn't get the chance to snap a picture out of it. On the other side, I was too scared to do anything alone in that place anyway..

After done eating, chatting, acting stupid, we finally asked for the bill. While heading out, one of the waiters was being very polite and nice. He saw me bringing my SLR camera and he offered us for a tour around the whole place. We agreed on the spot cause it's just a chance not to be missed! I took a shot of every room we visited, so let me just show it..

President Soekarno Room

On the way to our table, I caught a glimpse of this room and saw the big painting of President Soekarno. So when the waiter offered us for a tour, this was the first room I went into. He turned on all the lights and I was  more amazed at the little details and the photos that are hanged inside.. You see the picture of black and white on the right, it's made with pencils only.. and it really looks like a real picture. Andreas was the first one to really approached it and examined very closely, then realized that it's not a picture but a drawing..

In opposition of the room, there's a painting of Sultan Sahid (as far as I remember). On its left is the pictures of Netherlands Queen who built VOC in Batavia (Jakarta) back when Indonesia was still colonized.

I think it's really nice that the owner presented a room about our first President to honor his service for this country.

The Blue Main Room
But I only took a pic of this painting)

When I went outside the room, we saw this painting (also with pencils only) and figured out who she was. We have seen this book with a Chinese lady with very long hair on the cover in book stores and our guess is right. It is her.. She used to be the richest Chinese lady in Indonesia. Sorry for the low quality of the picture, I was too damned nervous (read it as scared) to not shake my hands. It was really creepy!

Not sure what this room is called

and here we have the scariest room ever!!! I also caught a glimpse of redness from this room but was too scared to even look inside. When the waiter turned on the lights, I was quite freaked out. At the other corner of the room, they also have another Yamantaka (If I wasn't mistaken, it is the king of hell in Tibetan tradition). Taking the picture of this statue was the scariest thing ever. I was familiar with it as the last trip I went (to China) was filled with Tibetan traditions. I've seen this before but by that time, I was watching a performance, the room was filled with lots of people and it was very far away. This is a very up close distance according to me AND I WAS FREAKED OUT! I even scrolled down the picture so I don't get to see the face of it as I'm typing right now. Yeah, I am such a coward..

The Lara Djonggrang Room

This is the Lara Djonggrang room. So in the middle of that two wood pillars there is the statue of the infamous Lara Djonggrang. *tremble tremble couldn't get a focused picture*

Again with the details, it really is amazing. These traditional Indonesian 2D puppet called wayang are put around the room.. 

In the other side of the Lara Djonggrang statue is the statue of Buddha. YEAH I WAS TREMBLING THE WHOLE TIME SO BEAT IT FOR THE UNFOCUSED PICTURE! Ehem.. Anyway, I asked the waiter whether the Buddha statues are really from Candi Borobudur. He said that the heads are really from Candi Borobudur, one of Indonesian Wonders. And also, there is one big Buddha head statue in the bar but I didn't saw where it is put. It turns out the owner of this place is a collector, that really explains it all

I didn't take this picture (obviously). It's the Lara Djonggrang statue and I took this picture from their FB account

Not done asking the waiter, Andreas kept asking about horror stories. I was only listening. He said that there used to be a lady who killed herself in the backyard tree. There was a Javanese ghost wearing traditional clothes in the front door. The most powerful ghost there is the one on the gigantic banyan tree in front of the restaurant. He's the one who keep all the other ghosts inside the place. I was too scared to hear the rest so I kind of spaced out.. hehehehe *shy* 

Although this place scares the shit out of me, I really think it's very fascinating. The antiques there are priceless!! I've never visited a place like this before, it is truly a unique place! The owner didn't hire any designer to help him design this place. He really is the one who designed the whole place.. HOW AMAZING IS HE?!

I rated it 8 / 10 for the food, 9 / 10 for the service and 10 / 10 for the decorations, interior, and details (although I was really scared).

The waiter also said that they are going to open up a new place and it will be scarier as the statues there are at least 3 meters high. It is in Kota Tua. And the deal is, I'm gonna challenge myself and go there when it's opened.. 

creepy creepy creepy.. ;p

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