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22 June 2017

Botanika Resto Surabaya

Upscale Indonesian Fusion Restaurant


Botanika Surabaya - Pecel Botanika (Rp 35.000)


Minggu lalu saya dan beberapa foodies memenuhi undangan food tasting di resto baru yang letaknya berdekatan dengan Carls Jr Kertajaya ini.



Last week we attended a foodies gathering in an interesting new restaurant in East of Surabaya City. Botanika Resto, which is located next door to Carls Jr Kertajaya.






Botanika Surabaya 

Tempatnya didesain cantik, dengan suasana lapang dan lampu gantung yang besar, mengingatkan saya pada kafe-kafe populer di Surabaya seperti Domicile.


This place is nicely designed, with vast open space in front, and a big chandelier which reminds me of popular cafes around Surabaya, like Domicile.





Botanika Surabaya - Second Floor


Botanika Surabaya - Traditional Snacks


Begitu masuk tamu disambut dengan berbagai jajan pasar yang familier di Surabaya.
Saya tidak sempat mencoba mencicipi jajan pasarnya, jadi hanya bisa beri komentar kalau penampilannya cukup menarik.


Upon entering the restaurant, you'll be greeted by this lovely traditional snacks. I can't comment on the taste, but the appearance does seem inviting.





Botanika Surabaya - Traditional Snacks

Botanika Surabaya - Traditional Snacks

Botanika Surabaya - Fresh Fruits

Botanika Surabaya - Honey for Sale



Botanika Restaurant Surabaya

Tempatnya menarik, cocok untuk yang gemar foto. Di sini cahaya mataharinya cukup kuat, jadi tidak menyulitkan untuk cari angle #ootd. Pilihan warna interior dan dinding-dindingnya pun cukup enak kombinasinya, pantulan cahaya dari dinding tersebut warnanya tidak aneh-aneh atau ngejreng, jadi tidak perlu banyak edit kalau foto di sini.


The place is a great spot for shutterbugs. It's well lit, so you don't have trouble finding a spot for your #ootd shots. The furniture's and wall colours are also good, since it blends naturally with skintones, no need to do plenty of editing when taking shots here.




Botanika Surabaya

Botanika Surabaya - Preparing Tamarind & Tumeric Drinks



The Dish

Lunch Gathering Menu - Botanika Surabaya



Restoran ini digawangi juga oleh grup resto steak ternama di Surabaya, jadi untuk olahan hidangannya cukup menarik.
Masalahnya adalah, fusion, dan makanan Indonesia dengan harga yang premium, biasanya tidak terlalu gampang diterima masyarakat Surabaya. Salut dengan keberanian tempat ini untuk mengusung kombinasi dua jenis makanan yang cukup sulit.


This restaurant whilst being new, is supported by a well known steak-house in Surabaya, which makes the dish rather interesting.
The problem is with the kind of dish they're serving, which is Fusion, Upscale Indonesian food. Both usually not Surabaya's favorite. So this place really have got the guts to try this particularly arduous combination.




Botanika Surabaya - Pecel Botanika (Rp 35.000)

Masalah rasa, saya termasuk tidak menggemari hidangan fusion, taruhlah itu Indonesian food, India atau Japanese yang bertebaran di Surabaya. Sepengamatan saya, kebanyakan hidangan Japanese Fusion yang ada di Surabaya yang survive adalah yang kelas middle. Fusion Japanese ini hadir sebagai alternatif lebih murah daripada hidangan Jepang Otentik.
Terlepas demikian ada beberapa tempat yang merupakan pengecualian. 
Salah satu contohnya resto Citrus Lee.
Fine dining yang menggabungkan teknik masak Perancis dan Cina, dengan harga yang cukup tinggi, tapi tetap populer di kalangan menengah ke atas.



Taste-wise I'm not a fan of any fusion cuisine, be it Japanese, Indian, nor Indonesian. From my personal observation, the fusion dishes that's being welcomed by Surabaya people is the Japanese fusion, but that's not because they like the taste better, rather it's a cheaper alternative for the real thing.
Usually that's the norm with fusion dish in this city, but there are exceptions to it. 
Citrus lee is an example, a fine dining restaurant that's one of the costliest albeit being popular dining destination, serving fusion dishes of French and Chinese influence.



Botanika Surabaya

Kadang tempat makan ada yang mengutamakan rasa, dan masakan Indonesia itu biasanya memang tidak terlalu mudah untuk difoto dan ditata / plating. Jadi resto ini kalau menurut saya lebih unggul di platingnya dibandingkan terlalu mengharapkan rasa yang nendang, ala resto Indonesia tradisional.
Cukup susah untuk mencari tempat yang bisa memadukan keduanya dengan sempurna.



Some place which sells Indonesian food, often time have to make a hard decision between going for the traditional bold tasting dishes, with a messy kind of appearance that's really not camera friendly, which is what you usually gets in traditional Indonesian restaurant, or you go the other route of cafe - fusion techniques, which usually put emphasize on good plating rather than those bold authentic tastes.
It's really hard to have it both ways.





Botanika Surabaya - Ketan Kuning Bumbu Sambal Rendang (Rp 45.000,+)

Botanika Surabaya - Ketan Kuning Bumbu Sambal Rendang (Rp 45.000,+)
Ketan Kuning ini rasanya cukup unik, rasa ketan yang beraroma cukup enak saat dikombinasikan dengan rendang. Walaupun termasuk appetizer, tapi bisa juga dipakai sebagai main course karena ketannya sangat mengenyangkan.


This Glutinous Rice with rendang is quite a unique appetizer, I liked the combination of tastes here. Though being billed as appetizer, this one could pass as main course alternative, since it's very filling


 .


Botanika Surabaya - Sop Buntut Bumbu Basa Ganep Blimbing Wuluh (Rp 75.000,+)

Biasanya kalau mendengar sup buntut, saya membayangkan kuahnya yang rasanya kaya kaldu, sedikit berempah, termasuk salah satu comfort food favorit di Surabaya. Di sini hidangan sup buntutnya jauh berbeda karena didominasi rasa kecut, menggunakan belimbing wuluh. Suka atau tidaknya tergantung selera masing-masing.



Usually, when ordering a Oxtail Soup (Sop Buntut) what comes in mind is a savory, rich broth which is just nice, could pass for a sick days dish, where you need something extra mild for the tummy. This one though, is a stark difference from the classic dish. 
It's bright and tangy, since it uses Blimbing Wuluh, which is a super sour fruit. Weather you'd like it or not, would depends on your personal taste.





Botanika Surabaya - Sop Buntut Bumbu Basa Ganep Blimbing Wuluh (Rp 75.000,+)
Berhubung rasanya sudah asam, sebaiknya tidak perlu ditambah lagi jeruk nipisnya. Kemarin autopilot kasih jeruk nipis karena butuh buat foto, hasilnya terlalu asam, bahkah untuk saya yang termasuk paling gemar rasa asam :D



Since this soup as is were pretty tangy and sour, I wont recommend you using the lime like the above picture. We were on autopilot photo taking mode yesterday, and ended up with a soup to sour, even for me who really enjoy sour tasting food :D









Botanika Resto Surabaya - Roti Jala Gulai Aceh (Rp 40.000,+)

Botanika Restaurant Surabaya - Mie  Goreng Aceh (Rp 50.000,+)
Dari semua main course yang dihidangkan siang ini, yang paling banyak penggemarnya adalah Mie Goreng Aceh di atas.

From all the main course we tried yesterday, the group favorite were this Acehnese Fried Noodle, pictured above.






Botanika Surabaya - Nasi Goreng Daun Mengkudu
 Nasi Goreng daun Mengkudu sempat disebut sebagai resep andalan resto ini, tapi untuk selera para tamu saat itu, lebih cocok dengan nasi goreng buah naga di bawah. Walaupun memakai buah naga, tapi rasanya tidak terlalu aneh, masih mirip dengan nasi goreng merah yang biasa kita temui.



This Fried Rice above use Mengkudu (Noni fruit) leaf, which is supposedly one of their signature dish. We kinda like the second Fried Rice though, which was made with dragon fruit.
Don't be deterred by their use of dragon fruit though, since taste-wise it isn't out of the ordinary. It's almost the same with your regular fried rice, which is nice.



Botanika Surabaya - Nasi Goreng Buah Naga (Rp 40.000,+)



Es Gula Asam (Rp 18.000)
Selain Gula Asam ada juga kunir asam pilihan minuman di siang ini. Saya lebih suka Gula Asamnya karena rasanya lebih kuat, sedangkan kunir asamnya lebih ringan.
Penyajiannya cantik dan menarik, awalnya akan tampak ribet kalau minum langsung dari gelas / jug saji kecil ini, tapi tinggal pakai sedotan, masalah terselesaikan.


There's this Gula Asam (java tamarind) drink along with Kunir Asam (tumeric) which was served during this lunch. I like the tamarind one better since it's stronger tasting, whilst the tumeric was just a tad too light.
This mini jug doubles as a glass for the drink, which might seem tedious to drink from. You'll just need to use straw instead of sipping directly on the jug.




Desserts

Botanika Surabaya - Poffertjes (Rp 25.000,+)



Botanika Surabaya - Kue Lumpur Taro Kolak Pisang (Rp 30.000,+)

Botanika Surabaya - Muso Jambi (Rp 25.000)

Untuk dessertnya yang paling favorit adalah porferjes di atas. Tidak ada olahan spesial memang, tapi rasanya sesuai standard yang cukup enak. Kue Lumpur dan Kolak pisangnya penampilannya menarik, sedangkan untuk yang terasa kurang cocok di lidah adalah Muso Jambi. 


The favorit dessert were the Poffertjes, which weren't special in any way, but up to the standard. The dessert soup of kolak pisang was decent. What didn't suit our tastebud were the Muso Jambi, which weren't that great combined. Especially the chocolate cup, which were bitter and strange.






Open Kitchen Area


Botanika Surabaya
Masalah rasa masih tergantung selera masing-masing. Saya sendiri tidak termasuk penggemar fusion atau interpretasi modern dari resep klasik, jadi bagi saya kualitas rasa masakan di sini termasuk cukup, tapi tidak sampai bikin kangen. 
Kenapa hal tersebut pengaruh? karena tampilan masakan demikian memang menarik, tapi biasanya rasa masakan tidak bisa optimal. Bahkan chef terkenal seperti Alvin Leung di show Maverick Chef juga perlu perjuangan lebih untuk melakukan dekonstruksi resep klasik Indonesia, dan akhirnya tamu juri lebih menyukai masakan orisinal yang tidak dibuat Chef Alvin. Bisa dilihat di https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=NpeChyWxXZI
Yang paling membuat rindu bukan masakannya di tempat ini, tapi suasana tempat makannya yang sejuk dan lapang, cocok untuk berlama-lama menikmati makanan bersama banyak teman. 


Weather you'd like the food here or not is a personal matter. I myself found the food decent, though nothing that really makes me eager to comeback here and have a taste. 
Taking Indonesian food and making it a fusion dish, or modern take on it, if this doesn't really classify as fusion, would take a hell of an effort.
Even celebrity chef like Alvin Leung struggled with that task.
As you can see the snippets here : https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=NpeChyWxXZI
That being said, the place is what really would make this place popular. It's breezy, comfy and vast, the kind of place you want to lounge and have a long nice conversation with friends.


Botanika Surabaya

Hal yang membuat saya salut dengan resto ini, selain cukup berani mengusung konsep yang berbeda, adalah konsep pelayanan saat periode soft opening. Mereka sudah membuka restonya untuk umum, namun berdasarkan reservasi terlebih dahulu.
Dengan demikian, restonya di periode awal tidak bakal diserbu secara berlebihan dan layanan terhadap pengunjung bisa dijaga kualitasnya.


For closing, I'd like to add another great point of this restaurant. Apart from the gutso to bring something new whilst risky to the Surabaya dining scene, they also have a unique way of doing their soft opening period. Usually in Surabaya, whatever restaurant you open, would be stormed by curious diner. This time around, they take a different route for this restaurant. Botanika is open for public, but only through reservation, that way, it wouldn't be overwhelmed by the overflow of visitor, and service would be kept at civil condition. Great move on Botanika, hopefully other restaurant will follow suit



Menu

Menu Botanika Surabaya

Menu Botanika Surabaya

Menu Botanika Surabaya

Menu Botanika Surabaya

Menu Botanika Surabaya

Menu Botanika Surabaya

Menu Botanika Surabaya

Menu Botanika Surabaya

Menu Botanika Surabaya

Menu Botanika Surabaya

Menu Botanika Surabaya

Menu Botanika Surabaya

Menu Botanika Surabaya

Menu Botanika Surabaya

Menu Botanika Surabaya

Menu Botanika Surabaya


Botanika Resto



Address: Raya Blok F-303, Jl. Kertajaya Indah Tengah VII No.33, Manyar Sabrangan, Mulyorejo, 
Kota SBY, Jawa Timur 60116

Phone: (031) 5954800

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