Monday, September 14, 2009

Djakarta Bali - Paris

She Was So Pretty, With Ribbons in Her Hair...
I spend a lot of time wandering the streets of Paris, it's one of my favorite things to do. On Saturday I was meandering near Les Halles when I saw her. She was stunning. Gorgeous. I crossed the street for a closer look. She was unlike the French ones - dressed in Indonesian finery and exotically perfumed. My throat tightened slightly. It was the hope from searching a long time for something and finally finding it.

She took me by the hand and welcomed me in. It was romantic - darkened just right, with focused lighting and an ornate chandelier. Nobody else was there - just me and her. It's like she had been waiting for me. I glanced at the menu and easily picked two of my favorites: Gado Gado and Mie Goreng. "You know what you want, don't you" she said, less of a question, more of an assertion. She was confident. It was a very sexy - as if something was being promised.

When the Gado Gado arrived I stared at it, unsure. It looked strange, a bit off somehow. I tasted a fork-full just as she leaned in and whispered "today my life coach suggested crystals to balance my spirit." I froze in mid-chew, became a mannequin. The words stung me like a eye-poke, they were so out of context. What the........? I blinked, took another bite, chewed slowly. The Gado Gado was drowned in peanut sauce and one-dimensional - all sprouts. Where were the potatoes? The tofu? It was all wrong.
"What do you think? Do you believe in crystals?" She was looking at me expectantly. No words came, nothing. I felt trapped. She was all looks, no depth, no substance. How could I let myself get suckered like this? When the Mie Goreng appeared I knew this was sure to be the most disappointing meal I've had in a while. It was shrouded in a muddy glaze. This is supposed to be a spicy dish - it should dance! It sat lifelessly in my mouth - flat, flavorless, disgusting. Just one bite and I quietly asked for the bill, paid my 30 Euros, got up, walked out, no looking back, relieved to finally be outside in the cool air.
9, rue Vauvilliers
1st Arondissement

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  1. The mie goreng looks like a MAJOR fail! Why is it, you can't get decent Indonesian food outside of Indonesia? I wonder if the kitchen staff is Indonesian? It's like they forget how to cook their own cuisine.

  2. blinded by good looks. it happens.

  3. Looks horrible... good to know what to avoid!

  4. I have been to this restaurant few times when I was in Paris. You can see food with same name being served in Malaysia and Singapore, but they taste different. If you expect these food to be identical in taste to those serve in Malaysia and Singapore, you will be frustrated.
    But I think it is a good restaurant. On few times I was there I ordered Indonesian food not listed in the menu, and they entertained my request. I am not an Indonesian but have lived in Jakarta and Bandung few years, I can say what you taste in this restaurant is not much different from what you would get in these two cities. Of course the price is vastly different.

  5. @tm - Ahhh, yes, prices in Paris. Don't get me started....