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Tugu Kunstkring Paleis Brings Traditional Indonesian Cuisine Within the Walls of a Historic Building

Take a trip back in time and experience old Batavia in the company of traditional Indonesian dishes at Tugu Kunstkring Paleis in Central Jakarta. 

The building which houses Tugu Kunstkring Paleis has been around for over a century, embodying within a sort of perennial sense that transports you back to a different time. Amid the bustle and hustle of the the Jakarta metropolitan, and nestled in one of its most classic sub-district of Menteng, is an Indonesian restaurant that brings a unique touch to the fine-dining experience. The restaurant’s main dining hall might familiarise diners with a time ‘before.’ Both decorations and furnitures seem to have been an aspect from a time unknown to the present, yet rings so closely vibrant to the lives we lead today.

When it comes to food, expect several tongue twisters in the menu that is sure to pique your curiosity though not to worry because the dishes served are traditional Indonesian cuisine that will satisfy your appetite for some of the most beloved localities. This includes Kaas Croquetjes met Kip, the truffle old-tinged crispy croquette of Parisian-style mashed potato with chicken and cheese filling as an appetiser, and Geroosterde Visch, a roasted marinated spicy turmeric sea bass fish fillet served with fried fern tip and baby potatoes as the main course.

Duivelse Kip, or Ayam Setan, is also another dish served at Tugu Kunstkring Paleis. It is an aromatic roasted chicken dressed with a sauce comprising of fresh chilis, dried chilis, green curry mustard and tomatoes. Photo courtesy of Tugu.

Refreshing beverages are in order when you dine here, and during our visit the Eat Vacation got to taste Tugu Kunstkring Paleis’ refreshing Virgin Mojito and Meik wei meik wei, two delicious mocktails that’s bound to give you a fresh palette to dig in again to the curious taste of Indonesian favourite dishes. Top it all with a lightly sweet dessert of Selendang mayang, just to tie up your Tugu Kunstkring Paleis experience into a neat bow.

When it first opened on April 1914, the space was intended to promote activities relating to the arts, and has since housed many great collections. When it was reopened by Tugu Group on April 2013, it continues to become a center of art exhibitions and events, contributing to a high appreciation to arts and history. Adorned with various antiques and paintings in every corner of the walls and rooms of this building, visitors are treated to the kind of perspectives that may be hard to find in a continuously developing city such as Jakarta.

Tugu Kunstkring Paleis also houses a cozy Bread and Coffee Corner, which opens early from 8am daily, and serves breakfast menu on the weekends. Photo courtesy of Tugu.

Tugu Kunstkring Paleis also boasts a concept of Betawi dishes, brought out in what’s called a jali-jali parade with ondel-ondel dancing along. The feast can be enjoyed by ordering their Tugu Rijsttafel Betawi set menu. Furthermore, sitting in the nook of the old building is the Bread and Coffee Corner, which opens from 8am in the morning daily, and offers special breakfast menu on the weekend. 

The Tugu Kunstkring Paleis might just be one destination, but it also houses the Suzie Wong Bar and is home to the Gallery of Tugu Kunstkring Paleis and the Art Space that has attracted many visitors over the years and will likely continue to attract more in the years to come. Visit this reminiscent of old Batavia in the heart of Jakarta, make your reservations by calling +62213900899 or email

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