Bandung Culinary Guide

Many people visit Bandung, the capital of West Java province, to pamper their taste buds. You’ll be amazed with what Bandung has to offer. From various food sold on street vendors to haute cuisine, every visitor will be able to find something to their liking here, in Bandung.

Batagor or Baso Tahu Goreng
Batagor or Baso Tahu Goreng (Source : rumahmesin.com)

Sundanese (the people living in West Java are called Sundanese) has tempting refreshments. Sundanese food tends to be bland yet tasty unless you add sambal dadak (chili and other ingredients grinded together) to your food. If you’re looking for more spicy taste, just add this sambal dadak with nasi timbel (steamed rice formed into a roll inside a banana leaf) and other specialties. This mouthwatering treat is too good to be missed! Usually sour vegetables soup (sayur asam) is accompanied by nasi timbel.

Sundanese people eat vegetables a lot. Sometimes they even eat raw vegetables (called lalap or lalapan) like cucumbers, tomatoes, coriander leaves, eggplants, cabbages, lettuces, and so on. Lalapan is usually accompanied by sambal dadak.

The special food of Sundanese, Nasi Timbel
The special food of Sundanese, Nasi Timbel (Source : kulinersehat.com)

Probably one of the most well known dish, timbel, consists of nasi timbel, lalapan, sambal dadak, a piece of chicken (fried or roasted Sundanese style), fried beancurd, fried tempe, a slice of jambal (salted fish). If you want to, you can add gepuk (slices of beef, mixed in traditional herbs, then fried), pepes (main ingredients such as fish, chicken, mushroom, etc. mixed with crushed and blended herbs, folded into a banana leaf, then steamed until they’re ready to eat), sauteed greens, and others. Nasi timbel is a favorite among locals and visitors. Batagor baso tahu goreng (literally means, fried meatballs & beancurd) is one of the most well-sought specialty. Made from blended fish and beancurd, with a special peanut sauce, batagor’s popularity remains constant.

People with sweet tooth might fancy pisang molen, an Indonesian traditional pastry filled with banana and cheese. For a variation, try brownies kukus (steamed brownies). Es cendol, made of blended/grinded rice, palm sugar, and coconut milk, is delightful on a hot day. While for a colder day, you might want a taste of bandrek or bajigur.

Bandrek from West Java
Bandrek from West Java (Source : jabarprov.go.id)

Bandung also offers various milk products most notably, yoghurt. Basically there are two kinds of yoghurt in Bandung the thin one, and the thick one (French style).

Hot snacks ala Bandung are widely sold throughout the city. Among them are gehu -toge tahu- (beancurd with beansprouts and vegetables filling), pisang goreng (fried banana), cireng -aci goreng- (fried tapioca), and many more. You might be interested in trying other snacks such as, nangka goreng (fried jackfruit), peuyeum goreng (fermented cassava, fried), nanas goreng (fried pineapple), and so on. Ketan bakar (roasted sticky rice) and jagung bakar/rebus (roasted/boiled corns) are also recommended.

Nasi goreng (fried rice), although not originally from Bandung, is always the local’s favorite. The ingredients vary, according to people’s preference. Sometimes the rice is mixed with seafood (usually shrimps, pieces of cuttlefish, pieces of crab’s flesh), chicken and vegetables, mutton and vegetables, salted fish, and so on.

Cakue, a dish made of flour dough then fried, is also worth a try.

Bandung also has other kinds of restaurants, like Padangese (food from West Sumatra, very spicy in taste), Javanese (sweeter in taste), Chinese, Japanese, Korean, Western, Indian, and so on.

Sundanese Food Bandung Fondly called Parahyangan meaning, Land of the Gods, this valley city has both metropolitan and homey atmosphere at the same time. Full of eateries, factory outlets, and malls, many people find going on a trip to Bandung both enjoyable and memorable.

ACTIVITIES

For a taste of nasi timbel and other Sundanese food, you can try the restaurants mentioned below. There are many others, though, so while you’re in Bandung, you might be able to spot other restaurants selling tasty food.

For a taste of nasi timbel and other Sundanese food, you can try the restaurants mentioned below. There are many others, though, so while you’re in Bandung, you might be able to spot other restaurants selling tasty food.

BUMBU DESA Traditional food with elegant surrounding. Jalan Pasirkaliki 160 & Jalan Laswi 1, Bandung.

BALE GAZEBO – Wide place, where you can eat while lesehan (sitting on the floor without chairs) or using a chair. Jalan Surapati 49.

SINDANG RERET – Jalan Raya Propinsi Ciwidey, Kabupaten Bandung, Jalan Surapati 53. One of the most famous Sundanese restaurants in Bandung. Jalan Raya Cikole Km 22.

SAUNG KABAYAN – Modernized Sundanese cooking. Jalan Dr. Junjunan 107, Bandung.

SARI PARAHYANGAN – Good, plain Sundanese cooking. Jalan L.L.R.E. Martadinata (Riau) 156-158 & Jalan Soekarno-Hatta 408.

KELAPA LAGOON – Chic place. Tasty but the price is higher than other Sundanese restaurants.Most foodcourts on the malls feature Sundanese cookings/restaurants. Most well-known is Ampera. You can grab nasi timbel here after browsing the malls. Jalan Sumatra 9.

If batagor seems to tempt you, then you might want to check out these restaurants:

BATAGOR RIRI – You can buy the batagors here half-cooked, so you can fry them at home. Half-cooked batagors only last a few days if put inside a refrigerator. Jalan Burangrang 41.

BATAGOR KINGSLEY – Has been Bandung’s favorite for ages. You can also buy half-cooked batagors here. Jalan Veteran (Bungsu) 25.

BATAGOR YEYE – Famous for its batagor and mutton soup. Jalan Buah Batu 139 & Jalan Cihampelas 198B

Pisang molen, brownies kukus are available at:

KARTIKA SARI – Jalan Buah Batu 165A, Jalan Kebon Jukut 3C, Jalan H. Akbar, Jalan Kopo Sayati 111A, Jalan Terusan Jakarta 77E, Jalan Ir. H. Djuanda (Dago)

PRIMA RASA – Jalan Kemuning 20, Jalan Buah Batu 169A, Jalan Peta 169

Other bakeries also sell these delicacies.

If you’re busy, you can always go to supermarket. Most of them sell pisang molen and brownies kukus.

The most famous es cendol is called cendol Elizabeth, for it is being sold in front of Elizabeth’s store (store selling bags and shoes) in Southern side of Bandung. However, it might be easier for you to order es cendol at traditional restaurants or buy it at the supermarket (prepacked, so you have to add the mixture of coconut’s milk, palm sugar syrup, and the cendol on your own).

Bandrek, Bajigur are available at most Sundanese restaurants. Sometimes they even sell bandrek and bajigur on sachets, so you can bring them as souvenirs for your loved ones.

Should you fancy yoghurt, you might try these places:

RUMAH MAKAN YOGHURT – Thin type of yoghurt, the hangout place for young and old alike. Jalan Cisangkuy 66.

BMC (BANDOENGSCHE MELK CENTRALE) – Apart from yoghurt, you can try other milk products here, such as milk, kefir, and so on. Jalan Aceh 30.

OLEH-OLEH ODISE – French-style yoghurt, thick type. You can order the yoghurt in small cups or in liters, Jalan Sukawarna Baru 28.

Interested in hot snacks? The street vendors selling these snacks can be found throughout Bandung, most notably in Jalan Supratman and Jalan Cilaki. Ketan bakar and jagung bakar/rebus can be found on Jalan Ir. H. Djuanda (Dago) and in Lembang area. Want a taste of fried rice? You can get fried rice on street vendors, restaurants, or food courts in malls.

Cakue, you say? Try this place:

HAUS TEABEC – Try the various yummy sauce to add some taste to your cakue. Istana Plaza Mall, Jalan Pasirkaliki 121-123, LG-B3.

Feeling adventurous in sampling spicy Padangese food? Try these restaurants:

SIMPANG RAYA RESTAURANT – A tad more expensive than other restaurants with similar type, but decidedly tasty. Try ayam pop without the chili sauce, for those of you who favor blander (yet still delicious) food. Jalan Buah Batu 150, Jalan Ir. H. Djuanda (Dago) 55, Jalan Surapati, Jalan L.L. R.E. Martadinata (Riau).

RUMAH MAKAN KAPAU JAYA – Relatively cheap and yummy. Jalan Dipati Ukur 80A.

If you feel like tasting Japanese, Chinese, or Korean food:

HANAMASA – Buffet style, Japanese food. Jalan Ir. H. Djuanda (Dago) 48.

SAN SUSHI BAR Hotel Holiday Inn – Just like sushi bars in Japan. Jalan Ir. H. Djuanda 29.

OKOH Hotel Horizon – Jalan Pelajar Pejuang 45.

For sushi and various teppanyaki lovers:

MOMIJI JAPANESE CUISINE – Classy and unique. Jalan Braga 64.

PAGODA MENU MANDARIN HALAL RESTAURANT – Spacious place, oriental-style. Delicious food, too. It is also halal, so Muslim people can eat here without any doubts. Jalan Trunojoyo 32.

EASTERN SHARK FIN’S RESTAURANT – Wide variety of Chinese food. Istana Plasa Mall, Jalan Pasirkaliki 121-123.

FLAMBOYANT CENTRE – For hainan rice and juan lovers. Jalan Sukajadi 232-234.

KOREAN HOUSE – Cozy place with great service. Jalan Sukajadi 175.

HAN KOOK GARDEN RESTAURANT – Very Korean, very chic. Jalan Karang Sari 21.

If steak and western food are your favorites, then you might be interested in trying these places:

CAFE BALI – Yummy western food with Balinese atmosphere. Aside from western food, this place also serves tradional Indonesian food. Jalan L.L. R.E. Martadinata (Riau) 215.

DAKKEN COFFEE & STEAK – While savoring your steak, you can also try their coffee. Ideal for hang out. Jalan L.L. R.E. Martadinata (Riau) 67.

WARUNG LAOS – Delicious spaghetti and tasty pizza with thin crusts will make you longing for more. Jalan Prof. Dr. Eyckman 2.

SUIS BUTCHER & TERRACE – Cool atmosphere, yummy food. Jalan Dr. Setiabudhi 174.

TAMANI CAFE – Great western food. Also serves Indonesian and Japanese food. Big portion. Jalan Ir. H. Djuanda 7-9.

Bandung also has many good restaurants serving seafood. Among them are:

KEPITING SUPER PARIT 9 SEAFOOD – Mouthwatering dishes. You can also buy their specialty? crabs, put inside a thermos flask. Ideals as gifts. Jalan Cendana 4.

THE OCEAN SEA FOOD & GRILL – On weekends, you will be able to watch live music. Big portion. Jalan Sukajadi 225.

Those who fancy Thai food can try these restaurants:

CO CA SUKI – Great service. Mouthwatering dishes.Jalan Ir. H. Djuanda (Dago) 173.

ROYAL SIAM THAI RESTAURANT – Endless variations of Thai food. Jalan Braga 121, 2nd Floor.

Vietnamese food lovers might find this restaurant to their liking:

HANOI HOUSE – If you visit this place on weekends, you’ll be able to order from their special menu. Jalan Sunda 56.

Bandung mainly offers food and drink as souvenirs. Visit these stores to grab the famous keripik tempeh, keripik oncom, sale pisang, dodol, and other delicacies:

RAOS, KARYA UMBI – Both are located in Jalan Cihampelas.

Jalan Cihampelas happens to be the central of jeans stores, so you might want to look around some more. And there’s more of course. Which is why Bandung is the shopping capital of West Java.

Bandung has it all, cozy little inns to five-starred hotels.

GET AROUND

If you have multiple destinations in mind, you’d better rent a car for a day (or two). There are taxi services in major streets and malls. Other parts of the cities mostly use public transportation called angkots, which are only recommended if you actually live in Bandung.

Public transportation called angkot, covers most of Bandung. For greater comfort, it is best if you take a taxi. For greater comfort still, rent a car. A day’s rent will save you time and trouble moving from one place to another and since Bandung is relatively small, you can cover most of Bandung’s interesting places in a day.

GET THERE

There are many ways to go to Bandung. You can go by plane, embark a train, or rent a car from Jakarta.

Fondly called Parahyangan meaning, Land of the Gods, Bandung has both metropolitan and homey atmosphere at the same time. Full of eateries, factory outlets, and malls, many people find going on a trip to Bandung both enjoyable and memorable.

Ways to reach Bandung from Jakarta may be as many as to Rome, so to speak. You can ride trains, buses, or use the many shuttle services with hourly schedules. Flights are less favored because the time it takes to travel to Jakarta’s airport (Soekarno Hatta) and check in may take longer than travelling by car.

Tips

  • If you plan to go to Bandung often, buy a complete map in major book stores. It’s a great investment. That way you might save some money. Instead of renting a car, for instance, you can maximize the public transportation to bring you anywhere you want to go.
  • If you’re not certain of local customs, language, menu, etc. don’t hesitate to ask!
  • It is advisable to learn a few important phrases in Indonesian. Not all Indonesians can speak English well.
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