Thursday, March 31, 2016 Sharon Halim 0 Comments

Namaaz Dining is the first molecular gastronomy restaurant in Indonesia. It consist of 17 unique and well prepared course with the cost of IDR 1.155.000 per pax. Andrian Ishak is the man behind Namaaz, he is a self taught chef and he clearly has a high curiosity, imagination, creativity and passion in food. He uses molecular gastronomy technic and combined it with scientific techniques adding a playful variations on traditional Indonesian taste in creating his dish at Namaaz. In Namaaz the menu changes every 6-8 months and each seasons have a unique theme. I was lucky enough to dine in on their first season of 'Favourite', where Andrian brings back some of the most favourite dishes from the previous 5 seasons.

Reservations is highly recommended because they are very popular and they can only accommodate 28 seats every night. They have three sessions; 6.30pm, 7pm and 7.30pm. Funny thing happen, I was stuck in traffic and decided to call namaaz to inform them that I'm going to be late. Turns out, they did not get my reservations but after a long chat they are happy to give us a table later that night. The restaurant has a classic but modern vibe, the decorations are simple with dark black furnitures. While waiting for the first course we were given unique wash cloth, it expand when in contact with water.

Each dish will be presented by the chefs and explanations on the philosophy, inspirations, ingredients and how to eat the dish will followed. We start with a blind tasting, the chef himself comes to our table and ask us to eat them and guess what it is. Turn's out the beef was watermelon, the egg was passionfruit and I managed to guessed both of them. The watermelon was juicy and sweet mixed with a slight sourness and freshness from the passionfruit. It was the perfect opener.

Kertas (Paper) is one of their most well known dish cause of it's uniqueness and creativity. This dish turns out to be Opor Ayam (Javanese Chicken Curry). You have to roll the pencil inside the paper and dip in into the coriander curry sauce and add some crunchiness with what's look like pencil dust and eat it. I was amaze by the taste, it was delicious and taste just like opor ayam.

Cabe (Chilli). The red chilli on top is not chilli but pepes ikan tongkol (mackarel tuna steamed cake) with bone marrow and bread. It's tender, crunchy, a little bit spicy, the fish taste clearly present and but no fishy smell.

Pempek (Indonesian Fish Cake). The pempek texture was so soft almost like a moose but still have a little but of chewy texture present in results from sous vide technique with subtle fish flavour. Sous Vide is a method of cooking which the food is sealed in airtight plastic bag then placed in water with controlled temperature.

Donat (Doughnuts). They bring out dish doughnuts and told us in Namaaz, they boiled their doughnuts so they put a clay pot on our table and drop the doughnuts in.

Sendok (Spoon). The spoon is actually made from squid ink and the snail is inspired by a childhood Traditional Indonesian game called Balap Keong (Snail Racing). Inside the shell is squid and to be eaten all together with a little bit of chilli on the spoon.

Batu (Stone). This dish is known for Indonesian old proverbs "Udang di Balik Batu" (Prawn Behind the Stone) which means there is something suspicious behind the actions or good actions not necessarily genuine in heart. The stone is potato and best to be eaten with the prawn but before that rub it into the Himalayan salt plate. 

Rujak (Indonesian Fruit Salad). In Indonesia we have various type of rujak and this one called rujak bebek (Smash Indonesian Fruit Salad). Transformed into a dramatic dish with nitrogen technique. You have to smash the ice and mixed it with palm sugar sauce, the taste was mixture between sweet and sour.

Rokok (Cigarettes). These cigarettes were made from marshmallow and popcorn wrapped in sugar paper while the ash in the ashtray was made from black sesame and terasi (Shrimp Paste). They will dip the cigarettes in a pot of nitrogen and will instantly froze the cigarettes. In results, fake smoke cigarette effect was present. It was fun, sweet and unique in taste.

Rawon (Traditional Indonesian Black Beef Soup). Do you still remember the doughnut? Turn's out it's not doughnut after all, it's a strong rich black beef broth. In the cup provided tea bag and when we pour the hot rich broth into the cup, the tea bag resolved and it become rawon soup with beef and bean sprouts.

Areng (Charcoal). This dish is uniquely presented, enclosed with glass to trap the injected charcoal smoke. It certainly looked burned and smell burned just like charcoal but it was perfectly cooked lamb. The lamb was tender and full of flavour with cassava.

Paha (Thighs). What look's like chicken thigh is actually fish marinated in Indonesian tumeric sauce and served with rice.

Rendang (Indonesian Beef Curry). The last main meal in the course and the most normal looking dish. Beef Curry usually served in soup but Chef Adrian decided to served in dried with all the flavours normally presented in the soup appeared in the beef it self. The beef was tender and very rich in flavour.

Kelapa (Coconut). This is the first dessert, cute white and red ball in a stainless steel bowl. You have to crack the ball's and mixed in all together than it become Bubur Susum, one of the traditional Indonesian dessert. It consist of coconut milk, almond, jelly and palm sugar. I love this dish.

Sabun (Soap). Chef Adrian describe dish as Pencuci Mulut (Dessert) and the soap made from Regal biscuits and the foam is milk. Regal and milk is a great combinations just like oreo and milk, as a kid I often eat this combinations as a snack. The refine version of this dish by Chef Adrian literally melts in your mouth.

Tete (Boobs). Kue Tete yg di Cubit it's the title of this dish. In Indonesia we have street snacks called Kue Tete (Boobs Cake), it got the name from the shape mimicking boobs and Kue Cubit (Pinch Cake). This dish is a mixture of both. The base was Kue Tete with matcha powder on top and to eat them you have to pinch the top of the cake and put it in your mouth as a whole.

Teh (Tea). This is not a regular tea, Chef Adrian instruct us to drink the whole tea in one action and then he ask what do you feel? Magically just like Heston version of this drink at Fat Duck, it was a hot and cold tea. 

Anniversary Orange. I made this reservation quite some time a go and I totally forgot that I put a special request. Chef Adrian deliver this to our table and he ask us several questions regarding our marriage and he explain that this orange is actually Klapertart - Indonesian Traditional Cake from Manado and inspired by Dutch culinary.

Es Podeng (Indonesian Iced Dessert). We were given rain coat prior to this meal than this small ball arrived, they pour liquid nitrogen on top of it soon after. Then this small ball starts popping similar to pop corn in a microwave. After it's stop popping than it's ready to eat.

It was an amazing experience, I would love to repeat next season. While all the food construction is beyond complicated, innovative and creative, the taste of the food are refine. Well done Chef Adrian, I left in awe and curious for more. It really was a fun experience.

Namaaz Dining Menu, Reviews, Photos, Location and Info - Zomato
Monday & Sunday: Closed
Tuesday-Saturday:  7pm-10pm

Jl. Gunawarman No.42
Kebayoran Baru,
Kota Jakarta Selatan,
Daerah Khusus Ibukota Jakarta, 12110