IO, Jakarta – One of the best parts of living in Jakarta is the easy access to a tremendous number of kinds of cuisine. A favorite to many, steak, is no exception. There are many high-end restaurants offering steaks from anywhere from under Rp 100 thousand to well over Rp 400. One steakhouse seemingly different from the rest is Akira Back, a modern steakhouse with a Korean touch. Akira Back’s featured steaks are its House Ages Beef in the choices of wagyu, T-bone, and ribeye. The AB Steak by Chef Akira Back outlet in the mezzanine floor of the MD Place building is Akira Back’s newest location in Jakarta.
The interior of the restaurant is cozy and mostly covered in black. Before entering the restaurant, visitors can view the restaurant’s meat storage room. AB Steak dry-ages all of its own steaks. When I arrived, chef Andri Dionysius introduced several of AB Steak’s most recommended dishes. However, not everything on the menu is meat, with several seafood appetizers offered such as the lovely plated Amberjack Carpaccio. The amberjack fillet is seasoned with roasted jalapeno salsa and blood orange soy creating a refreshingly salty and sour taste.
Another menu item worth trying is the Shitake Croquette. This unique potato-based croquette is topped with sea urchin and caviar, and filled with sweet shrimp which is known for its taste when eaten raw. The dish tasted fresh and was free of the fishiness often found in similar entrées. If you are fond of scallops, you may be interested in trying the Scallop Crudo. Seasoned with truffle yuja soy, the soft springy scallop has a sour and fresh taste, especially with its kimchi and jicama toppings.
“For our steak tartare we use choice wagyu combined with barbequed bone marrow and top it with pine nuts,” explained chef Andri while serving the dish. According to the chef, the dish was seasoned with only the basics. “Just salt and pepper,” he added.
I tasted the Australian Wagyu 9+ Flat Iron House Aged Beef, Porterhouse, and Bone-in Ribeye. Chef Andri cooks at right at every table which all have their own grills.
“This Australian wagyu is part of the shoulder. It has a very thick ala steak cut,” explained chef Andri.
To add to the variety of flavors, AB Steak uses five types of salts and sauces. The salts offered include Pink Himalayan, Garlic, Truffle, Yuzu, and Kimchi. The sauces offered include classic sesame, chili, bulgogi, soy sauce wasabi, and chimichurri. The Porterhouse and Bone-in Ribeye have been dry-aged for 45 days in a special room. The meat is also special as it comes from cattle which have been fed only grain for 200 days resulting in juicy, tender, and easy-to-cut meat with an extra weighty taste.
AB Steak emphasizes is unique and distinctive tasting cuisine. I recommend the restaurant to those who want to try great steak with a different take.