Jl Gunung Agung No.8
+62 22 2032 666
Our short visit to Bandung happened to coincide with my uncle’s wife Elizabeth’s birthday. Being one to get tired early in the evening and one to be antisocial, I didn’t really want to go. I mean, we spent the whole morning driving from Jakarta before spending the afternoon eating congee, checking out factory outlets and visiting relatives. Life was tough and I was tired! However, I managed to put on a smiley face as I hopped in the car with the rest of the family to go to a restaurant that was supposed to be ’15 minutes from downtown Bandung.’
Whoever told my dad that Maxi’s Resto was 15 minutes from the city centre had no idea what they were talking about. We followed the directions we were given which only resulted in us circling the same area for 30 minutes. Then when we finally realised which street we were supposed to turn into, we spent another 20 minutes driving up a hill and into what looked like a really dodgy part of town. Because we were so far away from the bright lights of Bandung proper, we had no mobile reception. And because my family – including myself – were too pussy to get out of the car to ask for directions, we got our driver to do it.
After being given a few wrong directions, we FINALLY arrived at the restaurant. After all that drama, we were worried that we’d look foolish arriving way late only to realise that we were actually the first guests to arrive. Ahh good ol’ Indonesia and jam karet (I meant that in a sarcastic way, of course. Try as I may but as a highly-strung female with a type-A personality, I cannot cope with the idea of time being elastic).
Maxi’s Resto is an interesting restaurant. You might be wondering what is up with the name. While I have no idea who or what Maxi is, I do know that Indonesians like to abbreviate and shorten words. Thus, restaurant becomes ‘resto.’ While I don’t particularly like the word resto, a lot of Indonesians do so who am I to argue. Foodwise, Maxi’s serve a variety of Western dishes, though Indonesian favourites such as chicken satays are available.
When the other guests finally arrived, we were able to order. I didn’t bring my DSLR that evening so I’m afraid you’ll just have to deal with crappy iPhone photos.
We started off with good ol’ bread and butter.
My sister Janice had the chicken soup that was covered in a neat puff pastry crust, which how my mum makes her soups back home during the Melbourne winters. It was pretty tasty and Janice finished it up really quickly.
When my brother Kenneth ordered the chicken burger, he expected it to come in a bun. He was surprised to find that all he got was a crumbed chicken breast pattie with veggies and baked wedges. Sometimes I forget that Dutch influences are still pretty strong in Indonesian restaurants and that when a restaurant offers ‘burgers’, they usually mean just the meat. Regardless, Kenneth’s ‘burger’ was delicious. The coating was crispy and the chicken breast super-tender.
Meanwhile, I made a bad choice by ordering a lasagna di carne al forno (read: Maxi’s attempt to make the humble lasagne sound more posh. I was surprised to find that it was, well, smaller than what I’m used to. Not only that, it also tasted only one rung better than the frozen lasagne they stock at the supermarket. There was barely any meat and the sheets were stiff. In fact, I was still pretty hungry afterwards so I filled my stomach up with beef martabak from a street seller.
I didn’t get to taste everyone else’s dish, but both my parents loved their dishes (mum had something Western while dad ordered satays). In light of that, I guess I shouldn’t complain for my dish was less than AUD$4 (in fact, so were Kenneth’s and Janice’s). Still, there was a MASSIVE difference between the quality of my dish and Kenneth’s dish which isn’t good at all. Given that Maxi’s Resto is an upscale restaurant with wonderful service, the prices they charge are ridiculously good. I wouldn’t mind visiting again perhaps during the day so I can actually enjoy the mountain views. But I’ll stay away from the lasagne.