Header image courtesy of @beaujkt via Instagram
Ask any Jakartans where the hippest place in town is and chances are they will recommend you to visit Senopati. Located in between three business districts—Blok M, Sudirman, and Mampang—the Senopati area grew in popularity after a throng of lively bars, high-end restaurants, and cosy cafés popped up to accommodate the rising demand back in 2015. After just three short years, the area has seen an overwhelming increase in the number of F&B establishments offering delicious food, sizzling drinks, and, of course, Jakarta’s vibrant nightlife. Read on for our best picks of where to eat and drink around the Senopati neighbourhood.
Opened a little over four years ago, Gioi is always packed with foodies who cannot get enough of its Asian delicacies—their salmon lodeh, roast duck, and molten cake are to die for. The new-ish Bubur Cap Tiger has been making a buzz for its classic affordable Chinese-style porridge, served in an aesthetically-approved interior on the Cikajang Street.
For Japanese lovers, don’t miss out on the famed Sushi Hiro with its Instagram-worthy sushi stack and long-list of sumptuous items, including shiitake bomb, truffle tori dry ramen, and tempura udon. Do reserve a seat as this wooden-clad eatery as it is always crowded! Last but not least, the comforting Fūjin is still in the game after five years, thanks to its vibrant teppanyaki charm, delicious food, and bombastic index of Japanese whisky and sake.
When we think of Senopati’s high-end eateries, it’s hard not to include Sofia in The Gunawarman hotel. Opened in 2016, the restaurant’s interior is inspired by European royalty, with Asian and Western menus and patrons of the town’s crème de la crème. While Monty’s shares the same clientele, its minimalist interiors, eclectic Scandinavian menus, and vegan options set it apart.
For something a little bit extra, Namaaz Dining offers breathtaking Indonesian molecular gastronomy with ever-changing menus. Helmed by chef Adrian Ishak, the visually-pleasing—yet at times peculiar—17-course set menu is perfectly paired with varied themes for lucky diners. Reservations are a must!
Bali’s own Pison Café launched in Senopati this year, offering Jakartans the oh-so-warm brioche French toast and an array of espresso-based coffees (espresso avocado is a favourite). Around the corner, Beau Bakery is still memorable with its delectable pastry choices (éclairs, croissant, baguette, and sourdough) and caffeinated drinks served in an open and green space.
As the longest-serving player in the neighbourhood, Crematology still lures in the crowds from weekdays to the weekends. Do opt for its signature drinks—es kopi manja and cinnamon elixir for a taste of unique flavours. Kopi Kalyan is another old-time coffeehouse that pioneered industrial interiors and the popular single-origin brews.
Lola, or Lola Espíritu y Libación, is a haven for good music and good drinks in Senopati (located next to Fūjin). While the crowd evolves through the week, the speakeasy bar boasts impressive libations from gin to rum to tequila along with its signature cocktails inspired by Caribbean rum and American tiki. When you see the Virgin Mary statue, you have come to the right place.
Despite the diverse crowds, everyone comes to Pao Pao Liquor Bar and Dimsum to have fun. With its Chinese red neon sign at the front, the bar champions high-quality drinks and dinner—fried and baked dim sums for light snacks. Sip on their Asian-inspired cocktails (Dragon Flame, Kinky Yuzu) or classic cocktails (Negroni, Long Island) for a night to remember.
Already known as the indie hangout, Duck Down Bar is tucked under the Soho building and modelled after American dive bars where plastered posters (say hello to Donald Trump’s) and neon signs make up the interiors. Let loose and sing your hearts out to legendary rock songs while drinking hard liquor in this unpretentious place, true to the rock ‘n’ roll spirit. Sorry, no cocktails allowed!