Indonesia, a nation of supreme diversity and a vibrant culinary haven, also happens to be home to one of the world’s largest—and most flavorful—instant noodle producers, Indomie.
This staple pantry item is a must have in every Indonesian household, with more than 20 different flavor varieties.
But the humble Indomie is now being transformed thanks to some of Jakarta’s more creative chefs.
Here are some places in this sprawling megacity that serve up Indomie, with a twist.
Mix Diner & Florist
A casual eatery on the legendary Raden Saleh street, Mix Diner & Florist is mostly populated by office workers and students.
This colorful joint is the answer to all instant noodle lovers’ prayers, offering almost all of the Indomie flavor profiles matched with mouthwatering toppings.
From crispy and salty deep-fried shallots grown in Brebes in Central Java, to deep-fried chicken leg that’s succulent with spices, and slices of sweet and sticky Korean bulgogi, these creative dishes are definitely worth a try.
Jl. Raden Saleh Raya, Cikini, Central Jakarta, +62 812-1237-8048
The People’s Cafe
The People’s Café promises a modern global street food concept and on its menu is a playful, exciting nasi mawut: a dish centered around Indomie Cabe Ijo (green chili).
The combination of fragrant rice infused with kaffir lime leaves, savory and spicy green chili Indomie, stir fried herby chicken and an egg sunny side up sums up one of Jakarta’s most exciting—and mouthwatering—noodle dishes.
Although this place is famous for its playful martabak (stuffed pancake), it has also become one of the destinations to visit for elevated Indomie.
I love the branch at Pondok Indah, an area considered to be the city’s answer to Beverly Hills.
The Indomie carbonara may not be something from a staple Italian kitchen—set aside expectations of creamy yolks and parmesan with bacon or prosciutto—but do expect cream, English cheddar cheese and beef bacon (for the Halal crowd).
Also try the Indomie Bolognese and the sliders—noodles that are formed into a patty, dipped in egg batter and fried.
12A, Jl. Margaguna, Pondok Indah, +62 (0) 21- 453-3004
Roti Bakar Eddy
This place is legendary. A snack hut, Roti Bakar Eddy was the first spot in Jakarta to introduce the concept of elevated Indomie.
Its signature dish, named Internet—(an acronym for Indomie, telur (egg) and kornet (corned beef)—has three quintessential toppings for the noodles: cheese, corned beef and poached egg.
It’s only open in the evenings and you can count loyal locals as well as celebrities among its customers.
11 Jl. Raden Patah, (behind Al-Azhar school), Kebayoran Bar