Enjoy a Pasar Baru coffee, Japanese-style


IO – Pasar Baru Jakarta, classically known as Passer Baroe, is one of the oldest market places in Jakarta. The trading complex in Central Jakarta has been around since 1820, or for more than 200 years. In the past, this area was a shopping destination for the colonial elite who lived in the Rijswijk area (now Jalan Veteran). At Passer Baroe, several brands of modern Indonesian commercial enterprises opened their first outlets and continued to do business for decades onward; for example, Bakmi Gang Kelinci, which was founded in 1957, and Matahari department store, whose first branch was established here in 1958.

After two centuries, the face of Passer Baroe has changed dramatically. The construction of massive shopping center stalls or shops in the 80s to mid-90s led to the displacement of several old buildings in this area. Known as the center of all kinds of shoes and tailors for several decades, Passer Baroe now strives to be a contemporary shopping destination.

Ferza Febrian, who was originally a private employee, perceived new opportunities at Passer Baroe. “I wanted to try to revive the mood in the oldest shopping center in Jakarta with something relaxed. Coincidentally, I

like coffee and a good coffee atmosphere begins a good day,” Ferza said at the end of March at his Tadasih Jakarta shop, which he founded in 2019.

Tadasih Jakarta is not just another hip coffee shop that has recently flooded every corner of the capital city. Here, the owner and barista, Ferza, wants to offer a sense of nostalgia when sipping coffee like in an izakaya (the name for a small bar stall in Japan). “I think I can create a dim, intimate, and relaxed izakaya-style concept among the empty Metro Atom stalls in Pasar Baru. Moreover, this place is affordable and also close to where I live,” said Ferza.

The presence of Tadasih certainly signifies a new direction for the coffee world in Jakarta. Through social media networks, Ferza introduced his coffee shop business to the pubic. Unexpectedly, his business was successful and many coffee connoisseurs came from various places in Indonesia to sip their coffee and feel the atmosphere it offers: the sensation of coffee in a market stall.

When asked why he chose the name Tadasih as the brand for his coffee shop. “I was looking for a Javanese word that sounds like a Japanese,” Ferza laughed while pouring V60-style coffee into my cup. The clay cup in front of me reveals a light brown color, the right color to enjoy real coffee. “If you want to enjoy your coffee, don’t let it become dark since the original taste of the beans will be lost,” said Ferza, inviting me to take a sip of the coffee labeled 1980.

That afternoon a customer was also enjoying a glass of coffee from a single-origin bean named Mekarwangi, one of the mainstay coffee varieties in Tadasih that has been curated by Ferza from a farmer in West Java for several years. “I always like to explore coffee; there are three spectrums of flavors in each bean that makes me fall in love, including this coffee bean from Mekarwangi, I immediately went to his garden and consulted the farmers there, seeking to share how to produce delicious and distinctive coffee beans.”

Tadasih Jakarta, which is tucked between camera stalls and secondhand clothes shops and drugstores at Metro Atom Passer Baroe, has a unique way of entertaining its customers. Each customer who comes will be given a queue number in the form of a card that explains what Tadasih is and the coffee beans. The concept of the room resembles an interrogation room in a police station with large glass as a divider, a Japanese curtain as a door that connects the areas.

The bar area which serves as Ferza’s work table in Tadasih is quite minimalist. Only three high stools are facing Ferza, the barista. The three seats indicate that in one session, Ferza will only serve three customers at a time – this is an attempt of creating a room for privacy between customers and coffee from Tadasih.

On the bar table lay some common coffee utensils such as a V60 brewer, hot water pot, coffee grinder, coffee measuring scales, coffee bean jars from various places, clean water taps, and a sink. “This is where we enjoy real coffee,” joked Ferza, who in his spare time often visits Yogyakarta and goes to coffee shops in the city.

Before closing the coffee session that afternoon and parting ways, I was curious and had time to ask Ferza why the shop’s operating hours are uncertain and can only be checked periodically through social media accounts. “I want the time to work in a shop follows my life’s hours, not the other way around,” he said, smiling.

Are you curious to know and take a deeper taste of the aroma of coffee in Tadasih Jakarta?

Don’t forget to check the operating hours directly on Tadasih’s social media accounts. Like a soul mate, enjoying a cup of coffee here does require a little ‘sacrifice’. When you have time, it could be that the shop is closed or the barista is on holiday.

Amid a pandemic situation due to the ongoing COVID-19 virus threat, it’s good to always apply health protocol rules when visiting this place. Always wear a mask when you are not eating or drinking, often wash your hands using soap or hand sanitizer, and pay attention to a safe distance from other visitors. Enjoy your coffee! (Freddy Wally)