It had been quite some time I wanted to go this place who took Tony's Roma former location in Panin building. So couple weeks ago on a Saturday night, I went there with hubby. Cafe Aria is one of the hippest cafe in town at the moment and the place was super crowded when we arrived without reservation. There were still some tables on the outdoor but it was super hot with all the yellow lights so we waited for the one inside, lucky for us we were seated shortly although it was not the ideal spot as it was in the center of the room between two long tables with big crowds who kept on looking whenever I lifted my camera to took pictures of the interior, so I ended to not getting any pictures as I thought to wait until I finished our dinner and that's when the camera's battery went off. :(
What I can say that the interior was nice. Place was spacious, bright lights with kitchen bar in the center and wine cellars on the back. Natural light wood for the furniture and artificial big trees all over the room. Anyway, here's what we ordered. Bread basket (20k) and Roast duck with mixed green leaves served with onion marmalade (52k) as starters. Hands down, one of the best duck I ever tasted, so juicy, so tender, so well done seasoned, and the aragula leaves was fresh and not bitter, comes with duck sauce and plum sauce. It was delicious! Nothing much to say on the bread basket, aside from how terrible it was. Unlike the one usually served as complimentary on Italian bistro, the breads were very standard white bread cuts in different shapes. It might be still acceptable if only they were soft, but it's not. It was rough and hard felt like over night bread, definitely not fresh. The cheese stick was not helping either.
|Roast duck with mixed green leaves served with onion marmalade|
As the mains, I chose Roast chicken with orange sauce (95k) and the waiter told me that it need around 30 minutes to be ready, yet still my hubby's choice of Italian style pork ribs served with vodka infused watermelon (155k) was served longer than mine. So you can guess how super long the food was being served, funny thing the bread basket came after our mains. Prompt service was definite not their specialty.
My chicken came in huge portion, served in each one piece of breast and thigh, grilled to perfection, addictive on few first bites yet losing its flavor after it, as I cut deeper, the meat tasted bland, so I guess the seasoning was not really seep in. The pork ribs came with fries and watermelon cuts. Ribs were tender although the flavor was not really special.
|Roast chicken with orange sauce|
|Italian style pork ribs served with vodka infused watermelon|
Overall, my personal impression was they did good on the food presentation, taste can be upgraded aside from the perfect roast duck, and service surely need an improvement. First, the bread basket came after our mains served, then they gave me spoon and fork to go with my chicken... seriously? And don't even bother to ask for a new plate and chilli as it took triple reminders and still forever to come.
Will I be back? Yes, I will as I enjoyed the food but I will not be coming on Saturday night again. I figure maybe if I come in a much lesser crowd, I will get much better service.
Gedung Panin Pusat
Jl. Jend. Sudirman Kav. 1
Senayan, South Jakarta
Ph. +6221 7395828
Opening hours: 8am - 11.30pm (weekend until 1am)