¿POR QUÉ NO? JAKARTA

¿Por Que No? just opened for public two days ago (as this post is written) and it’s the newest addition to the list of Tapas restaurants in Jakarta. Locating on the 5th floor of De Ritz building in Menteng, this restaurant is surely a unique one. Why is that? Keep on reading.
I attended their pre-opening dinner invitation last week, but rest assure as the opinions stated here remains my own. First of all, you’ll be greeted by this huge signboard made of colored pencils crafting the word “POR QUE NO”, for those who don’t know, Por Que No? is actually the spanish for “why not?”. If I knew on the first place that the space would be that minimalist & chicly designed, I think, it’s indeed “¿Por Que No?”. I just love the simplicity of the dining area as it’s covered in glass but well air-conditioned making it just the perfect venue to have your lunch (and that red chairs OMG). The sky was actually getting moody on my visit and for some reasons, I love the ambiance even more! I think glass architecture's always win-win. There’s just something sexy and lovely about it.





I think they’re building a little outdoor area with mini bar, but as I visited, it’s not 100% ready.



Their main feast focus is actually “tapas” and when you say “tapas”, it’s going to be appetizers, snacks and shared cuisine, almost like Izakaya, only it’s Spanish style. I don’t know if they keep it there but on my visit, they actually wrote the menu on the wall and the range was actually pretty good, although I don’t really understand most of it as it’s written in Spanish </3. They categorize the range to several groups like Aperitivos (snacks), Del Campo (from the land), De La Huerta (from the garden), Del Mar (from the sea), Quesos (cheese), Embutidos (cold cuts), Ensaladas (salads), Platos Grandes (big plates to share), Croquettas (croquettes) and desserts. ¿Por Que No? actually consulted with a real Spanish cuisine expert and they’re brave enough to claim that the menu they’re having will reflect the authentic Spanish flavor, but uh will it be my kind of “dayum”?

APERITIVOS
Arbol de Aceitunas Alinadas
IDR 30k
Aside from its complicated name “Arbol de Aceitunas Alinadas” actually means “olive tree”. Presentation wise, it’s very beautiful and in a sense, quirky, but it’s technically black and green olives placed on the branches of the tree so I guess you can imagine how olive tastes like, personally I prefer the black olive more as I found that a little milder and subtle for my taste bud.
Cucurucho de Foie con Jamón
IDR 75k
Another beautiful presentation and this time is three mini cones of Foie Gras mousse with ham slices on top. The impression that I initially expected was the thicker cream mousse with rich flavor, but unexpectedly, the mousse had this buttercream texture and kinda stay around your taste bud for a while and the flavor was actually very mild.
Manchego en Aceite 
IDR 40k                                 
I didn’t try this one as this was cheese, but what I can tell you: good presentation, sliced Manchego cheese marinated in rosemary, it’s just a traditional Spanish cheese made of sheeps’ milk.

Fried Asparagus & Fried Eggplant (Berenjanas Fritas)
IDR 40k                                                                         
If I am not mistaken, it was probably the first time that I’ve had fried asparagus! I love the bigger chunks comparing to the thin sliced and crispier ones as it’s a little harder to digest and at certain part it was quite bitter. The Aioli sauce gave that extra tasty flavor that complement very well with the fried asparagus. However, if I have to choose, I’d go with the fried eggplant as the sauce was exactly what I expected to be paired with: honey truffle sauce.

ENSALADAS
Ensalada con Tartar de Salmon
IDR 75k
Salmon salad served in jar, you can pour the sauce in and shake or stir to mix. The sauce was tad sour (it was lemon vinaigratte sauce), but it’s such a good match to the more neutral salmon. The greens were fresh and the portion was shareable for two or three.
Ensalada Champioñones
IDR 75k
This one was their mushroom salad, also served in jar. The dressing was the orange mustard sauce, everything was fresh but I found it a little too common hence it’s not my favorite.

Ensalada con Fresas y Queso de Cabra
IDR 75k
Now my favorite was this one! The baby spinach basil salad (trust me the greens were fantastic) with strawberries and goat cheese. Of course I didn’t have it with the goat cheese and proceed to take some for me first, but since the character of this salad was “sweet”, the goat cheese could contribute in giving that little hint of saltiness.
Trilogia de Gazpacho
IDR 60k
Chilled soup served in test tubes, I never actually am a big fan of chilled soup as I am an avid hot food lover, but it’s actually not bad, the one in the orange color actually tasted like a more refreshing tomato soup.

DE LA HUERTA
Tortilla Espanola
IDR 35k
Ingredient wise, this couldn’t go wrong: potato and egg and boy indeed wasn’t! It’s like having a well seasoned yummy potato layer cake covered in egg.

CROQUETTAS
Croquetas de Queso Azul (Blue Cheese Croquette)
IDR 55k
¿Por Que No? offered a few selections for the croquettes such as the beef and the blue cheese, again, since this was cheese, I skipped it but my friend told me the flavor was very cheesy with a little savory and salty flavor to it and the aftertaste was decent.
DEL CAMPO
Solomillo de Terner
IDR 110k
This is the case of simplicity at its best! Fresh and premium meat, lightly seasoned but resulting this tasty and ultra tender & juicy medium beef.

Hueso de Cana
IDR 70k
This is their take on the classic bone marrow. I’ve never been the biggest fan nor someone who hates bone marrow. I just always find myself to always feel a little bloated after finishing the whole portion by my self since the texture’s very silky and fatty, but I must say that theirs was quite tasty, especially when you pair it with the crispy butter bread to add in a little texture.

DEL MAR
Gambas as Ajillo
85k
This was also another simple dish but executed just perfectly. The shrimp was cooked perfectly with white wine resulting this soft, tender & juicy texture but it’s the seasoning that did most of the talking! It actually reminded of the turmeric shrimp you’ve probably had somewhere and then proceed to make me think of my mom’s signature shrimp.

Adobo Fiesta
IDR 60k
Deep fried dory in traditional Spanish marinade, I feel like on the state where I had too much food that this didn’t ring a bell, I think I expected the dory to be softer, but the seasoning was tasty enough and there’s a moderate herb flavor and aroma to it.
PAELLA
Arroz Negro Paella
IDR 240k
Wouldn’t comment much on the naming *mouth zipped*, but this black paella was surely pretty tasty, if you wonder, the black coloring came from the squid ink. Special for this one, a pre-booking is required to ensure the freshness of the ingredients and flavor, since they’ve been creative with the presentation, they also “equipped” the customer with spray bottles filled with lemon juice (forgot to take the pic). You NEED to use this to enhance the flavor of the dish, especially since most of the condiments are seafood, some of you might find this a little fishy.


DESSERTS
Torrijas
You know I sometimes have this scary thoughts whenever I see desserts in ivory or yellow color as I started to imagine that there will be cheese, butter and those dairy products that I really don’t like, yeah I know it sounds a little ridiculous considering most desserts USE DAIRY PRODUCTS, but I draw the line at cheese, I could really vomit. Despite its “scary” look (for me), this was actually NOT that milky, it’s the classic French toast dessert topped with vanilla ice cream and dressed with honey. The toast was very fluffy and the overall dessert was pretty yum, sweet without overpowering one’s palate.
Natillas       
Natillas is their version of the egg custard dessert with biscuit crumbs and caramel sauce. I found it a little too milky for my liking but the sweetness was on the perfect balance.
Chocolate con Chile
This is their take on the good old chocolate molten cake but with a little hint of spicy from the chili flakes. This was one of my personal favorites in overall and particularly, my most favorite on the dessert served that night. The cake was perfectly cooked with soft gooey texture and runny chocolate batter inside. It wasn’t overpowering sweet and in a sense, altogether dayum.
Holy shit that was A LOT OF food!

I honestly think ¿Por Que No? serves good food, some were outstanding like the beef steak, shrimp and chocolate lava cake with chili flakes, some might needed work here and there but that’s competely ok. Short to say: I wasn’t disappointed.

Looking forward for their outdoor area to be completely finished, it could easily be the hot spot for rooftop dining enthusiast. FYI THEY CURRENTLY OPEN AT 5PM SO DON'T COME TOO EARLY.

Por Que No
De Ritz Building 5th fl.
Jalan HOS. Cokroaminoto No. 91, Menteng
Menteng, Jakarta Pusat 10350
021 - 3901 950
Opening Hours: 5 PM - 12 AM
Pricing: $$ - IDR 250k for two
Dresscode: casual


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Map for Jalan HOS. Cokroaminoto