Authentic Indonesian on Aberdeen

FOOD stops were looked forward to for many reasons on a 20-hour bus trip from Sumatra to Bali, not the least the discovery of the food of West Java.

The driver would pull in at warungs, small family shops that cooked up regional dishes that were familiar but different to Indonesian food elsewhere.

The emphasis is for sweeter flavours with a reliance on sweet soy sauce and palm sugar, along with spices such as turmeric, galangal, ginger and chilli.

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Set over a number of pleasant rooms in an cute 1920s home on Aberdeen Street, Northbridge, Tasik is a family-owned and operated eatery that evokes memories of this mountainous region.

“It’s authentic and the best Indonesian food I have had,” a diner enthused as she tackled the sop buntut ($10), a brimming bowl of oxtail soup, the meat falling off the bone.

A regular, she reckoned she’s tried just about everything on the menu–and has never been disappointed.

A beaming waiter seated us, reappearing quickly with water and menus and her service couldn’t be faulted throughout.

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With its batik tablecloths and Indonesian carvings there’s a laid-back feel to this eatery.

But faced with such deliciousness my lunch companion and I ate with unseemly haste, kicking off with a serve of curry puffs ($6): “They look like little Cornish pasties,” my UK companion exclaimed.

The shortcrust pastry was wonderfully crumbly, and tasty with a spicy potato filling.

When it came to noodles our helpful waiter recommended a bakmi, with tofu rather than chicken ($12).

Delicately flavoured it was a great foil for the ikan bakar ($19) a couple of well-sized fish fillets, spiced up with chilli, onion, tomato and sweet soya sauce. The crisp crunchiness of the fish was magnificent.

The gado gado ($12) could have done with a bit more of a peanut flavour, but was nevertheless enjoyable, and the still crunchy cabbage had a pleasant sweetness.

To discover West Java without breathing in other people’s smoke and listening to ear-splitting, tinny Indonesian pop music throughout the night, just head to Tasik and soak up the peace and great, well-priced, food.

by JENNY D’ANGER

Tasik Indonesian Restaurant
63 Aberdeen Street, Northbridge
9228 1884
open Tues–Fri lunch and dinner, Sat–Sun 6–10pm

16 Pink Rice 10x3 16 Turban 10x3

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