With such an obsessive clientele, I can’t imagine how much lovely hard cash the owners of this pempek specialist put into their coffer every night. Their pempek (the signature dish of Palembang; large dumplings made of boiled fish lightly fried and served with coko, a spicy sauce suffused with chilies, dried shrimp, soy sauce, vinegar, tamarind, palm sugar and a truckload of garlic) is utterly divine, easily the best I’ve had anywhere, and the basic, run-of-the-mill tile-and-laminex surrounds do nothing to distract you from the perfection in your plate. And there is no going past that sauce: the coko is a delicate balance of sweet, sour, hot and garlicky, driving the pempek without overwhelming it. The fish cakes themselves are crisp on the outside, tender but firm on the inside, with none of that off-putting fishy aftertaste.
Behind the dry snacks galore—including, curiously, kopi luwak (coffee made of the excrements of the common palm civet) that cost Rp 235,000 a packet—there definitely is a serious kitchen that knows what it’s doing. I absolutely LOVE this place. PS. They do nationwide delivery.
Opening hours: 10.00 – 22.00