jakarta: bakmi gm and the marriott buffet

when we landed in jakarta, nothing felt familiar anymore. i know a lot can change in a decade and i knew about all the ongoing developments throughout the years, but i just couldn’t believe how different everything was! it was like i landed in a city that i’ve never been to before, not a city that i’ve spent nine years of my life in (which, to-date, is the longest time i’ve ever lived in one city). i’m so glad one thing was still exactly the same: the food. especially at two of my favourite places in jakarta, bakmi gm and the buffet at the marriott.

bakmi gm

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i can’t even put into words how happy it made me to have bakmi ayam again, after craving it for ten years and not being able to find this dish anywhere else in the world. it tasted exactly how i remembered it – it’s funny how food and the way it tastes can elicit so many memories. bakmi gm was still in its same spot in pondok indah mall, and had the exact same menu. pangsit goreng + bakmi ayam + teh bottle = a perfect first meal in jakarta and the first thing that felt like home.

sailendra, the buffet at the marriott hotel

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despite being bombed twice, this place is exactly the same – from the layout to all the food served. i was pleasantly surprised and incredibly glad that this was one of the few places in jakarta that didn’t change a bit. it is seriously the BEST BUFFET IN THE WORLD. the sections of food available are as follows: seafood (oysters, crab legs, lobster, shrimp, etc.), japanese (sashimi and various sushi rolls), indian (all types of traditional curries with basmati rice and naan), chinese (different strains of noodles soaked in soup, with meat and other garnishes), indonesian (traditional indonesian dishes like nasi goreng and mie goreng), italian (pizza cooked in a wood-oven and pasta made right in front of your face), cheese (all types served with crackers, bread, and slices of meat), desserts (all kinds of decadent cakes, slices of fruit, and a chocolate fondue fountain), and a section of miscellaneous dishes that can’t be categorized by country, but includes items like roast duck and racks of lamb. oh and i think there’s a salad bar somewhere there too, but this is not the time to waste precious stomach space on a salad.

if you ever find yourself in jakarta, these would be two places i highly recommend checking out for food.


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