Pala Adas, a typical menu and design from Indonesian archipelago

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VIP Room. (Photo: Kartika Indah)

IO – “Pala Adas” or “Nutmeg and Fennel”, are spices widely used in Indonesian cuisine; they inspired May Farida to name her restaurant. In tune with the name, this Bistro serves typically appetizing archipelagic foods. 

The restaurant was established in 2012 on Jalan Elang Laut, Pantai Indah Kapuk, North Jakarta. But since last year, Pala Adas Restaurant has been occupying a new and more strategic location, in Ruko Crown Golf Mediterania, Pantai Indah Kapuk. 

May Farida said she founded her restaurant because she has a passion for the culinary field. She and her friends often gather in restaurants, so she thought “Why not gather or hold company meetings in my own restaurant?” 

“Over time, it turned out that Pala Adas was accepted by my friends and the community until now,” said May, who is also an entrepreneur in the automotive sector with PT Hurricane. 

Favorite Menu 

Through Indonesian cuisine, May wants to explore and tell the outside world that Indonesia has spices that can create delicious dishes. Nutmeg also means “fragrant”, while fennel is a spice for cooking chicken or fish curry for aroma. Thus, Pala Adas represents spices used for various fragrant dishes. 

Her favorite foods are Gurame Matah, Sop Iga Asam Garang, Bebi Teri Ijo, Papaya Flower, Rice Pandan, Duck Chilli Green, Pesmol Fish, Betutu Chicken, along with various other archipelagic dishes. 

Featured drinks include healthy juice from vegetables, Medan Mixed Ice, Buah Naga Yoghurt, Ginger Wedang, and others. “We always use spices and avoid artificial flavors and colors. Purely from spices that make fragrant dishes so that the dishes are delicious and healthier,” May said. 

Restaurant Interior 

Pala Adas restaurant is designed for intimacy. There are several sections in the restaurant, namely, the front hall, the central hall, and the VIP room. The front hall of the restaurant is designed typically Indonesian. Once entering this section, you will see batik ornaments at the top, as well as glass and batik floors. 

As for the central hall, May gave an ornament of her self-portrait, which was depicted as carrying a basket of fruit. Interestingly, this painting is combined with red brocade fabric. As for VIP rooms, they are designed classically and luxuriously. May said the combination of all these things was done so that visitors feel the mood. 

According to May, Indonesian food has a different kind of ambiance. Pala Adas not only serves delicious Indonesian cuisine, but the presentation is also appealing, including the garnishes, so customers can take pictures with the food that is served beautifully. 

“I want to make a unique impression that only exists in Pala Adas, so if visitors want to make any event, just stay in the restaurant and eat, as everything has been well provided for,” she explained. 

Various awards are also displayed on the walls of the restaurant, such as Women’s Inspiration 2018 Awards as an achievement of how May built a business for 27 years in the automotive and restaurant fields. “Appreciation is a bonus and a gift from God so that I will continue to inspire,” she declared. 

Many Pala Adas visitors are largely women and families. Some visitors hold events such as bridal showers and birthday parties. “Some also came because the place is unique so they want to take pictures. Some teenagers have birthday parties because they see the place is unique,” May explained. 

For May, running a business such as opening an Indonesian archipelago restaurant must have a concept, focus and maintain standardization, and super VIP customer service, following the target of the middle and upper class. Various facilities are also provided, such as catering for companies and breaking the fast, packages, and events. 

Pala Adas Restaurant accommodates around 90 visitors, namely 20 in the VIP room and 70 visitors in the hall. Usually crowded on weekends and happy hours on weekdays. Pala Adas Restaurant is open from 11.00 WIB until 21:30 WIB. Prices at Pala Adas are very competitive for its segment at Pantai Indah Kapuk. (Kartika Indah)