Namaaz Dining (revisit)

During my first visit to Namaaz, I felt that this restaurant had something to offer to the Jakarta culinary scene. I like the way they present their idea to elevate authentic Indonesian cuisine by applying avant garde technique into it. I decided to spend my Valentine’s day here to experience their new menu and location.

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The restaurant itself is more refined in terms of dining room and service. The new 30 seats Namaaz has an open kitchen where the guests can almost barely see everything throughout the dining experience. I was sitting on the chef’s table, so that basically I had more exposure to the kitchen.

IMG_0725Passion fruit sphere. Soda tablet.

What you see isn’t what you get. Both the appearance and the texture are completely like a proper raw egg. The idea is to create the flavor similar to passion fruit Italian soda in a egg form. The yolk and the white are made from passion fruit juice, and served with soda tablet.

IMG_0726Martabak

Ultra light and crisp puff pastry, served with sous vide yolk spread (The chef keep the temperature at 64’ C), sous vide mutton topped with egg whites caviar and spring onion. Even though this interpretation of the martabak (or known as murtabak in Singapore and Malaysia) didn’t really meet the real stuff apart from the components, it was absolutely delicious. The moment you spread the yolk jam on the pastry, and having it together with the mutton, you’ll know that that this plate wasn’t enough.

IMG_0727Sate lilit

I personally feel this interpretation is way too off from the original version. It’s normal for a chef to push the boundary, but the danger lies when he doesn’t know where to stop. This is a spanish mackarel fish cake with red cabbage coating served with peanut sauce. Let’s get it straight, the fish cake is too salty, and fishy to a state where it was being unpleasant. I was close enough to stop myself from having it after the first bite.

IMG_0655Bebek cabe rawit

The concept of this dish is similar to Heston’s “meat fruit”. Basically, it’s a minced duck in a red chili case, served with authentic Indonesian bbq sauce. Taste wise is pretty decent, and I don’t like the duck to be prepared this way.

IMG_0728Rujak semangka

Again, this is another manipulative dish. It looks like a plate of beef carpaccio, but the beef was actually made from “dehydrated and rehydrated watermelon”. It’s served with “rujak” sauce (rojak in malaysia). This dish was spot on! Especially for the rujak sauce was really good, even though it might be slightly too spicy for some people.

IMG_0729IMG_0730Rujak bebek

This dish was adapted from the original rujak bebek (“pounded rujak”), where normally some selections of fruits are pounded and mixed with palm sugar or known as gula Malacca. The “case” is made from jicama juice shaved ice. Jicama or known as bengkuang in Indonesia is a root vegetable that high in water content, naturally sweet, and normally used in the soup, salad, or even dessert. Inside the jicama case you have mangosteen sorbet, peanut, pomegranate, diced ubi jalar (some kind of yam), topped with jambu air (known as water guava or malay apple) foam, and served with Malacca sugar sauce. This dish was so good, because every component compliment each other and blend really well.

IMG_0740Beef Rendang

The beef is pre-seared and cooked in sous vide for 1.5 hours in 58’ which resulted in a beautiful piece of pink meat. As I mentioned in some of my previous post, I’m not a big fan of sous vide beef, but, it works. Here, you are having something different from the normal meaty (sometimes tough) beef rendang meat sink in a bold, oily rendang sauce to a neat and classy beef rendang on a plate without sacrificing the authentic flavor a bit.

IMG_0731Sop buntut (oxtail soup)

Normally the original sop buntut  is served with bone marrow. Here, the bone marrow is emulsified with with rice to form a puree, but the texture is too pasty in my opinion. I think the soup has been on top of the stove for quite sometime that makes the broth somewhat slightly too salty (over reduced).

IMG_0732Udang telur asin (prawn with salted egg yolk)

Smoke butter infused king prawn, mashed potato, smoked butter sauce. Perfectly cookef prawn, tender, sweet, and tasted far too good compared to the normal salted egg prawn.

IMG_0733Bacem

Braised mutton chop, mutton jus, white rice, broth foam. The meat was undoubtedly tender, but it was slightly dry.

IMG_0668Opor ayam

This is a complete makeover from the original dish. Short biscuit topped with “opor” custard that is too heavy in my opinion. I get the idea, but the execution is a no for me.

IMG_0734Kue keranjang (Basket Cake)

Basket cake or normally known as Nian Gao in Chinese is a special cake during Chinese new year. It is made from glutionous flour and sugar. On this plate I was having a basket cake with mandarin coating, served with Indonesian cotton candy (rougher texture compared the normal cotton candy). I personally don’t like basket cake, so I can’t comment much about this one.

IMG_0736Pisang bakar lilin (edible grilled banana candle)

Some people might easily notice that this dish first introduced by Heston Blumenthal in his legendary Fat Duck restaurant in a different version. On this dish the chef  use the grilled banana coated with fructose and served with popping candy. The wick is made from pecans.

IMG_0675Dragon’s breath

Another famous gimmicky dish, Dragon’s Breath. The vanilla meringue is dipped in liquid nitrogen for about 35 seconds, and it will produced a smoke when you eat it.

IMG_0737Es kachang

Caramel pearl, peanut puree, chocolate paste, and Chocolate pearl filled with es kachang syrup. Check out my Instagram account for details.

IMG_0679Hot and cold ice tea

Similar to the previous session, you can read it here

IMG_0739Smoked chocolate mousse

There’s an Indonesian proverb saying that whenever you’re in love, even a cat shit will tasted like a good chocolate. This is where the idea was coming from this dessert, smoked “poo” chocolate mousse.

 

I have zero doubt about the way chef Andrian executes his flavor. He is the man who can put almost everything on the plate tasted right. One thing that bothered me was about the slow service. I was far too slow in my opinion. Looking the way the chefs (apart from the head chef) plate their foods was really pain in the ass. It was slow until I felt that the 3 hours meal was supposed to be end in less than 2 hours.

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I really appreciate the way chef Andrian explained every single dishes to every tables on that night, but it will far more efficient if the floor staffs are trained to explain the dish as well.

Hopefully by the time I post this they’re having some improvements.

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Namaaz

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Jl. Gunawarman No. 42, Kebayoran Baru, South Jakarta

http://www.namaazdining.com

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