Bengawan - Keraton at The Plaza

7/27/2014 Soya Yanagawa 0 Comments

You might already know about the Keraton at The Plaza's signature restaurant named Bengawan. Located on the seventh floor, Bengawan will indulge you with their sleek décor and beautiful view on the heart of Jakarta. It really makes my heart soar, I can see Jakarta's city view outside the windows, and getting indulged by it sleek and wonderful atmosphere.

I feel like that I was hypnotized by the luxurious and wonderful interior design. The interior shouts for Indonesian culture and geography, but it still have the elegant and sleek atmosphere. Bengawan use rich of colors and textures for their walls and furnitures.

To tell you the truth... I wish that I can stay there as long as I wanted.

For your information, Bengawan at Keraton at The Plaza providing an authentic five-star dining experience. Open seven days a week for breakfast, lunch and dinner, including Saturday and Sunday Champagne Brunch.

Starting 20 March 2014, Bengawan will indulge us with their modern Mexican Kitchen. Proudly to announced, the Mexican dining experience at Bengawan was served in the hand of Chef Lamberto Valdez Lara. Here is a brief about Chef lamberto:


Chef Lamberto Valdez’s culinary journey spans across 8 destinations in 5 countries over 25 years, where he professes culinary arts in both casual and upscale fine dining restaurants. Lamberto believes in using only the freshest local ingredients, and likes to keep the taste simple. 
Lamberto grew up in the pacific coast of Acapulco, Mexico, where in between school and fishing, he did his apprenticeship in the legendary Princess Hotel of Acapulco. Lamberto’s culinary adventure brought him to the California coast where he explored San Francisco to San Diego in between surfing and cooking. His passion for cooking saw him rise from commis to executive levels at high end resorts including Le Meridien, Marriot and Sheraton. Lamberto has cooked for US President Bill Clinton, when serving as Executive Sous Chef at The Ritz Carlton Manalapan, Florida. 
In 2003, Lamberto opened his own restaurant El Chamol at Lake Worth, FL, a 150-seat upscale modern Mexican Nuevo Cuisine fine dining restaurant where he was personally involved in the detailed planning of the restaurant concept, kitchen design and layout. 
In 2009 & 2010, Lamberto was appointed executive sous chef at the five- star diamond resort W Hotel, Doha, Qatar where he worked alongside world renowned three star Michelin Chef Jean-Georges Vongerichten, in setting-up and establishing two elegant concept restaurants. 
By 2011, Lamberto was promoted to Executive Chef, where he was selected by renowned three star Michelin Chef Alain Ducasse “Enterprise” to oversee the food operations at the first Mix concept restaurant by Alain Ducasse in Puerto Rico. 
Fluent in English, Spanish and French, Lamberto is presently the Director of Culinary at Keraton at The Plaza, a Luxury Collection Hotel, Jakarta.

On the Modern Mexican Kitchen, you can taste the authentic Mexican dishes for lunch (12.00-15.00) or dinner (18.00 - 22.30). Above is the complementary Crispy tortilla chips (totopos) that served with 3 different kinds of sauce, which are green salsa sauce, sour cream and red salsa sauce. Chef Lamberto made the presentation of the sauce to similar like the Mexican flag.

I really love the idea that we can dipped the tortilla chips with 3 kinds of sauce. You can choose the herby freshness taste of green salsa, refreshing taste of sour cream or hot ans sexy taste of red salsa. You will be indulged by the rich textures and complex taste. Overall, the complimentary was outstanding!



Chef Lamberto once said that  You haven't tasted the Mexican dish if you haven't tasted the guacamole. That is why I ordered guacamole

Guacamole is an avocado based dip that originated with the Aztecs in Mexico.The guacamole was served with crispy corn totopos.

I really love the presentation. It was so rustic yet beautiful. The guacamole was served with stone container and garnished with tomato and cilantro. For the taste, I might fans with avocado, so I really like it. You can taste the creamy and characteristic taste of the avocado with a hint of tangy taste from the lemon and do not forget the fragrant and a hint spicy taste from the onion.

Sopa de Tortilla

You know what, Sopa de tortilla for me is like a soup version of enchilada, with chicken and tortilla chips. This Sopa de Tortilla is a great soup to serve for starters, the textures is a little bit thick and have a bold taste of the spices. I really love the crisp flavors of cilantro and lime combined beautifully with the tomato-chili broth. You can taste a hint of corn's sweetness, onion's tangy and spicy taste and heat from the pepper that echoed the taste of the soup.

For me, this sweet sour savory soup is really worth trying when you went to Bengawan Restaurant.


Lamb Birria Tacos

I am amazed with the taco's presentation. Bengawan put the tacos on their special and self modified container. The presentation made this street vendors in Mexico looks neat and beautiful. For your information, Taco is a traditional Mexican dish composed of a corn or wheat tortilla folded or rolled around a filling. Bengawan offers you four kinds of birria which are skirt steak, chicken, lamb and portobello for vegetarian.

Taco is usually eaten without utensils and often accompanied by garnishes such as salsa, guacamole, cilantro, tomatoes, onions and lettuce. For the tortillas, Bengawan use corn tortilla instead of wheat tortilla. For me, it has beautiful crisp and a hint of sweetness from the corn, but I don't really like the bitter aftertaste. For the birria, the lamb's meat was well cooked and seasoned. To produce the Lamb Birria, Bengawan took 12 hours to cook, that is why it was so soft and moist and the spices perfectly soaked.

Bengawan's Lamb Birria Tacos was served with Mexican rice, pinto beans, limes, green and red salsa. I really love the herby rice and the sweet pinto beans.

Chicken Skillet Fajitas

One of the skillet fajitas that Bengawan served is Chicken Skillet Fajitas. Every skillet fajitas was served with bell peppers, tomatoes, onions, mexican rice, refried bean and flour tortillas.

To eat this skilled fajitas, you can take a leaf of tortilla and put all the ingredients in it. After you put the ingredients, you can fold it and start to eat it. I really love the refried bean. It has a smooth texture and sweet taste; combined with the savory and herby mexican rice, it taste so wonderful. The chicken was tender and beautifully seasoned. 

By combining all the ingredients into the tortilla, you can taste the richness of textures, tastes and fragrances. One of my recommended dish at Bengawan.

Hanger Steak Skillet Fajitas

For those who prefer steak rather than chicken, you can order the Hanger Steak Skillet Fajitas. The beef itself has a spicy sensation, but not overwhelming. It makes the taste become more wide and rich.

Oh, did I mentioned that to preserve the heat, Bengawan put the protein into the hot plate? So you can compound all the ingredients calmly and the protein will still warm. So you can have its maximal deliciousness. Just like the Chicken Skillet Fajitas, it was served with bell peppers, tomatoes, onions, mexican rice, refried bean and flour tortillas.

Steak Grilled Quesadillas

Quesadilla's name derived from tortilla and the spanish word queso. It was a flour tortilla that filled with savoury mixture. Usually it contains cheese, meat, vegetables and other ingredients, then folded. We often to find quesadilla that folded into half moon shape, but on Bengawan their quesadilla was folded into triangle shape and looks like a crepes.

This Quesadilla has a very diverse taste, textures and fragrant. This steak grilled quesadilla was combined with the mexican cheese, tomatoes, chipotle sauce, crema agrua, pico de gallo. I really like the solid texture from the tortilla that combined beautifully with the moist of cheese on the inside and its rich flavour is jawgapping.


Pastel 3 Leches
3 Milks cake,  Berry Compote, Kahlua Sauce

I really love the moist and soft texture from the cake. It was served with crunchy caramel, berry compote and thick kahlua sauce.  To enjoy the cake, you should compound all the ingredients and then you eat it. It taste so rich and very refreshing. But to be honest, I think the Kahlua can be bolder.

Choco Flan
Vanilla flan, chocolate, pistachio caramel crunch

I really amazed with the presentation of this dish. It was beautiful and mouthdrooling. The vanilla and chocolate flan was so indulging. you can taste the softness of vanilla combined with the bold chocolate taste and richened with the pistachio caramel crunch. For a sweet tooth, I really love this dessert. the pistachio caramel crunch was beautifully incorporate the flans and add some kick into it.

Cinnamon Sugar Churros

It was so cute. The churros was chubby like me. hehe.... OK, The most important thing is the dipping sauce. Bengawan served this churros with their 3 kinds of home made dipping sauce. It was Cajeta Caramel (Goat Milk), White Chocolate Sauce and Mango Compote. Obviously, you can imagine their indulging taste. You can taste the savory-sweet cajita caramel, the sweet and silky white chocolate sauce and sweet-refreshing taste from the mango compote.

for the churros, it has beautiful textures. crunchy on the outside and soft on the inside. It is up to you to dipped the churros into your most favorite dipping sauce. Well, for me, it was the mango compote!


To add some more refreshing element into your dining experience you can try their delicious beverages. You can asked them which one will suit you the most.

To tell you the truth, I am amazed with Bengawan, either for its idea and execution to brings the colorful and sexy mexican dish into a sweet and calm fine dining. What a wonderful experience.

Have a great day y'all

Keraton the Plaza
Jalan M.H. Thamrin No.15
Jakarta 10350
T. 021-50680000

TWITTER: @KeratonJakarta

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