--> Aswin and Alia's Food Journey: March 2014

Mamak Kitchen: A Fusion of Singaporean, Malaysian, and Thailand Cuisine

Opened in the mid of 2013, the restaurant is serving a fusion of Singaporean, Malaysian and Thailand cuisine

Bali (Culinary) Trip in March 2014

Finally, after a year of planning, we are able to set up a trip to Bali. Very excited! Alia has been mentioning about Ubud for quite some time and now this trip is about to be realized.

Welcome Home: Nanny's Pavillon Housewarming

On 30th of April 2014, we were invited to the housewarming of the newest Nanny's Pavillon restaurant in Jalan R.E. Martadinata (Riau), Bandung.

Caffe Bene: Korean Coffee Shop in Bandung

Alia has been craving to visit this place for a while, so when the time comes to visit she was delighted

Warung Sangrai: Real Indonesian, Eat With Their Bare Hands!!

Located in the opposite side of Mamak Kitchen, the restaurant is serving traditional Indonesian Food with one particular course that are standing out: Quails


Mon Cherie Dessert... It's What Happiness Tastes Like

Three of our closest cousins decided to start their own dessert line, and we are really excited and happy with their work.
Their pudding are based on our Grandma's secret recipe, so as as someone that already tasted them, we can say that it is tasty. They, however, managed to twist things around with additional four flavors of green tea, taro, bubble gum, and guava, making them more modern and fit for younger audience.

Besides the pudding, they also have their own line of Apple Pie Pop Tart. With the price range of around 9-12K rupiah, we suggested that you should try them. They also accept delivery, although right now it is just around Bandung area. Hopefully soon they would be able to expand their delivery area to wider area.

So, what are you waiting for?


Mon Cherie Dessert
Voila Salon
Jl. Kidang Pananjung No. 5C
Lapak Bu Ceuceu
Jl. Riau No. 83
Bandung - Indonesia
SMS/ Whatsapp: +62 89656935249
Twitter: https://twitter.com/myMONCHERIE
Instagram: MonCherieDesserts

Currently they have four flavors

The Pudding

Bubblegum Pudding

Guava Pudding

Taro Pudding

Green Tea Pudding

Granma's Pudding

Apple Pie Pop Tart


Bakso Miskam, Bandung

Since we returned to Bandung in early 2010, the price of Mie Bakso strangely has skyrocketed over the years. If it was a stock, and we invested there, we might be rich by now :).

So we were excited to find that there is one new branch of Mie Bakso that offers delicious noodle and meat balls, but with affordable price and good quality. The other main plus side is: It is located conveniently near where we lived! :)

The Mie Bakso tasted more lighter. It also goes the same with the broth. It is more lighter compared with other famous Mie Bakso stand all around Bandung. The overall experience was great, and with easier-on-the-pocket price, it is a bargain for us!


Mie Bakso Miskam
Jl. Talaga Bodas No. 52

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The Noodle & Fried Wontoon


Snack Gifts from Malang

Another gift set from our lovely sister-in-law who has conference in Malang. This time she brought the Lapis Mandarin and Pia.

The Pia is particularly tasted different from regular pia that we used to consume. It is the tangkwee flavor that probably makes the difference.


Lapis Mandarin Legit Tinabika and Pia Cap Mangkok

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Lapis Mandarin
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Pia Cap Mangkok
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The Address for Pia Cap Mangkok


Our Pilgrimage Journey to Medina and Mecca on January 2014: Sabar Jaya Restaurant

When we returned to Indonesia, we finally make a final pitstop in Purwakarta area for lunch. The place is apparently quite famous for Umrah and Hajj travel agents, judging from the hoardes of travel agents stickers in the front door.

The restaurant is also serving the menu different with the usual Padang restaurant branch. We take the food and the beverages ala carte, compared with being served with the usual small stacks of plates like in regular Padang restaurant.

The food is also quite limited, but yet fulfilling. The Sop Buntut in particular is quite delicious.

Perhaps the next time we visited Purwakarta, we can try this restaurant again.


Sabar Jaya Padang Restaurant

There is a Rice Somewhere in this Plate

Unique Business Idea


Our Pilgrimage Journey to Medina and Mecca on January 2014: Familiar Brand in Foreign Country

Couple of products that we thought did not exist, but yet available for sale in Saudi Arabia.

Perhaps they can be imported to Indonesia, soon?


Mars Chocolate Drink and Ice Cream

Pop Mie with Curry Flavour


Our Pilgrimage Journey to Medina and Mecca on January 2014: Broast Al Furoo

This is our second attempt to purchase the broast chicken. By looking at the logo we were convinced that we have found the one. However, after quick inspection, we were disappointed to find that the brand is not what we wanted for.

But a serving of food is a serving of food, right? Better enjoy them then.

Similar with our previous experience with broast chicken, this one also packed for serving a family. Four broast chicken and stacks of french fries. What makes it different is their additional garlic sauce and two buns of diner bread, instead of flat breads.

Their taste is quite alright, and the garlic sauce in particular is quite tangy. I think it really compliments the chicken taste.

Perhaps someday we can find the one. In our next Hajj pilgrimage, perhaps?


Broast Al Furoo

The Full Package

Their Famous Garlic Sauce

Four Chicken and French Fries. One Portion for me :)


Our Pilgrimage Journey to Medina and Mecca on January 2014: Peanuts and Raisin in Jaronah Mosque

While waiting for the other pilgrims who are taking their second miqat, we strolled around the Jaronah Mosque, looking for something to snacked, and one particular vendor quickly emerged.

The outlets is very simple, just stacks of plastic bags behind a pick-up car. But the colors of the peanuts and raisins is very inviting. We could not resist to purchase a bag... maybe two... alright! Three! bags of peanuts and raisins there.

And we only stayed for 30 minutes there. Can you imagine how many bags that we purchased if we stayed there for more than an hour? :)


Peanuts and Raisin in Jaronah Mosque

Peanuts and Raisin
Minaret of Jaronah Mosque


Our Pilgrimage Journey to Medina and Mecca on January 2014: Al Kawakb Broast

One of the main interesting food in Saudi Arabia, is their famous broast chicken. It is basically flour battered fried chicken with sides of french fries and bread. So, our first take of the broast chicken is in the Al Kawakb Broast.

Located in front of our hotel, the vendor is located with several other seller, including Nasi Kebuli and Fruit Juice seller. We quickly ordered them out.

The serving includes 4 (four!) piece of chicken, a heapful of french fries and two large flat breads. I think it could feed at least four of us here.

And it turned out right. We finished the whole meal for two days. Hmmmm...


Al Kawakb Broast

The Broast Chicken

The Bag

Complementary Flat Bread


Our Pilgrimage Journey to Medina and Mecca on January 2014: House of Donuts

Our (late) uncle has a habit of traveling alone to foreign location and bringing unique, sometimes unexpected items along the way. And in Mecca, he is apparently also travel in solo between praying time.

While we were resting between praying time, he managed to purchase a stack full of donuts to be shared with us. We were really thrilled (and surprised) as we have not found any of these brand during our stay in Mecca. This means that he has travelled quite far, and into quite unknown places.

The donuts tasted quite alright, however, it is the place of the vendor that makes us curious.
So, one night, after Alia is already feeling better, we decided to circle around the Mosque area to find the donuts seller. After searching for two shopping malls, we finally found the place.

It turned out the house of donuts is quite famous in Mecca, as you can see from the queue line. Thankfully we have two bags full of them, so we can enjoy them conveniently in our hotel room :).


House of Donuts
Website: https://plus.google.com/105332896474776824588/about?gl=id&hl=en

The Packages

The Donuts Inside
The Outlet


Our Pilgrimage Journey to Medina and Mecca on January 2014: Murtabak, French Fries, and Juices

It turned out, staying in different country, with different temperature, can really affect your body condition. Combined with tight schedules and a lot of activities, can make you ill.

This what happened to Alia and my dad. Both of them, after finishing the Umrah, suddenly goes ill with high fever and rapid cough. From both of them, Dad's illness is worse than Alia's.

One of his request during illness is to have a Murtabak. So, I quickly went to the vendor in front of the hotel to purchase it. The seller is quite nice, but very straight forward. He speaks no English, so the communication is mostly done via hand gesture.

I ordered one Murtabak, one French Fries and Fruit Juice, and being a good foodie, I am "obliged" to taste them before serving :P. The taste in overall is similar with the martabak found in Indonesia, but with smaller portion and less crispy compared with the Indonesian counterpart.

I hope this can help fasten the healing process.


Murtabak, French Fries, and Juices

Murtabak and French Fries

Fruit Juice


Our Pilgrimage Journey to Medina and Mecca on January 2014: Dates Garden

Trip to Saudi Arabia is not complete without visiting their most famous fruits: Dates. And this morning, we have the opportunity to visit one of the dates garden here near Mecca.

The dates garden has a large store in front which sells all kinds of dates, chocolates, sweet treats, and even beverages such as tea (they are super delicious). I think this trip is a "mandatory" trip from the travel agents, besides visiting the infamous Cornish shopping mall. Of course, after we finished conducting the Umrah.

It really okay with us.

Sweet treats? We could not passed it for a lifetime :).


Dates Garden

Dates Trees

The Store
Chocolates and Dates. Everywhere!

Chocolates #1

Chocolates #2


Our Pilgrimage Journey to Medina and Mecca on January 2014: Elaf Kinda Hotel

After Medina, our next destination is Mecca, the holy land. For your information, Mecca and Medina are the only cities in the world that only Moslem can enter here. In the outskirts of Medina we can find non-moslem, but the inner city is strictly prohibited. The penalty for non-moslem who entered these area are deportation and black-list in the Saudi Arabian immigration database.

Enough with the serious information, let's continue to talk about the hotel.

As our previous hotel in Medina, our hotel in Mecca is also nicely and conveniently tucked nearby the main Mosque, Masjidil Haram. It is just behind the famous Zam-Zam tower, a mega mixed use structure consisted of six internation hotels there, including Sofitel and Pulman, and shopping mall.

In front of the hotel is an array of stores which sells chocolate, dates, perfumes, meals, and supermarket (Bin Dawood).  This restaurant also provides similar services with our previous hotel in Medina, with meals for breakfast, lunch, and dinner, already conveniently prepared for us here after praying in front of the holy Kabah.

The hotel has two restaurant. One serving International cuisine, while ours serves Indonesian cuisine (as most occupants comes from Indonesia). The food was great. It reminds us a little bit of home actually (with the Kerupuk and others).

One particular dessert that we really loved is their Strawberry Mousse. What better way to energized yourself before doing Tawaf then this delicate yet lite sweet tooth, right?


Elaf Kinda Hotel
Website: http://elafgroup.com/elaf-group/our-businesses/hajj-umrah/our-services/hotel-booking/makkah-hotels/elaf-kindah/

Breakfast Menu

Lunch Menu


Standard Breakfast Menu (for one or for two?)

Look at the Size of that Egg!

Lunch Menu

There are Rice Somewhere on this Plate...

They Served Kerupuk and Sambal. How Indonesian!


Our Pilgrimage Journey to Medina and Mecca on January 2014: Chocolate Filled Croissant

We don't know the brand of this croissant, but every time we went using bus, this croissant and mineral water are always presented.

The flavor includes chocolate cream (pictured) and strawberry jam. The taste is OK, especially when we are on the road.

Additional notes: When we showed this pictures to several other people who already takes Umrah previously, most of them nodded and say: "That croissant is also being served to us when we went for Umrah".

Hmmmm... Makes you wonder, eh?


The Infamous Chocolate Filled Croissant


Our Pilgrimage Journey to Medina and Mecca on January 2014: Sofaraa Al Huda Hotel

In Medina, Saudi Arabia, we stayed in the Sofaraa Al Huda Hotel. The hotel was conveniently tucked just across the Nabawi Mosque, making the praying and resting to be easier for us.

The unique thing about hotels in Medina, is that they are always surrounded by small kiosk all around them. Either you are staying at the Hilton or in three stars hotel, you can always find dates shop, restaurants, fast food chain, or even starbucks.

As most of the hotel guests comes from Indonesia and Malaysia, most of the foods served here has adjusted Malay taste. We say, adjusted, as the flavor might not be as similar as you can find in the local warong around Indonesia, but for some of us, it does lessen the burden for homesickness.

As the meals for breakfast, lunch, and dinner are served in the hotel (making the trip as the ultimate pilgrimage and praying trip), it will be boring for us to eat the same thing everyday. It is a good thing that the chef here is quite creative, alternating the Mediteranian cuisine in the breakfast menu, and on lunchtime and dinnertime, focusing on Malay and Indonesian taste.

Yum. Back to praying I guess.


Sofaraa Al Huda Hotel
Saudi Arabia, عبدالرحمن بن عوف، The Central Area, المدينة المنورة 42311
Phone: +966 4 820 5550
Website: http://www.alsafirhotels.com/services.html

Breakfast Menu #1

Dinner Menu

Lunch Menu

Breakfast Menu #2


Our Pilgrimage Journey to Medina and Mecca on January 2014: Saudi Arabian Airlines Meal

As mentioned in our previous blog post around two months ago, we were traveling to Saudi Arabia, to Medina and Mecca to be exact, for our Umrah pilgrimage. The trip itself takes around 14 days including the trip. Along the way, we learn more about the Arabic culture, about Islam, and also about their cuisine :).

So, for a couple of days onward, we will share with you about our journey there, mostly about our food journey to the holy land: Mecca.

Our post will begin with our food experience while taking a flight using Saudia Airlines. The in-flight menu was delicious, with mixtures of Indonesian and Arabian menu. The options include: Spaghetti with Beef Sauce, Chicken with Kebuli Rice, Beef Stew with Rice, and Pancake with Strawberry Sauce.

The food was OK, and it really helped us pass through our eight hour long trip to Medina. Yum.


Saudia Arabian Airlines
Website: http://www.saudiairlines.com/portal/saudiairlines/Welcome

Spaghetti with Meat Sauce

Rice with Beef Stew

Rice with Kebuli Chicken

Noodle with Stirred Fry Chicken

Waffle with Strawberry Sauce