A few months back Liz and I posted the story, ‘Best Places to Sip Coffee in Jakarta’. This story was compiled after extensive research into the topic; sipping and savouring many impressive brews from numerous coffee spots that we initially identified. Since then, we have discovered many more cafes worthy of a mention, so many in fact that we will have to present them to you as a series of posts.
Jakarta’s love for coffee is in full flight and today we present you with a further six coffee spots that Liz and I highly recommend. As always, we love to hear from you. Our Comment section is at the bottom of this story – so feel free to give us your feedback.
In the meantime, grab a cup of your preferred coffee, get comfy in your favourite chair, and Happy Reading!
1. But First Coffee
Located in the lifestyle concept space of the Pelaspas building in Dharmawangsa, But First Coffee is a tranquil oasis away from the hive of activity that is Jakarta Selatan. Sharing a premises with Snctry Health Bar (pronounced ‘Sanctuary’), this cohabitation allows you to grab a luscious smoothie bowl from Snctry and have it delivered to But First Coffee (located just next door), where you can relax in a quiet space overlooking a small, leafy courtyard.
Jl. Dharmawangsa Raya No. 4
Opening hours: 7am – 9pm
Instagram: But First Coffee Shop
We like to sip: Liz enjoyed a cappuccino and the But First Coffee’s signature Iced cappuccino. I enjoyed a flat white. It was suitably strong (with low acidity), full-bodied and demonstrated a good balance of milkiness.
Why this place? We love this place as it’s not striving to be super-cool, which by default makes it a ‘cool’ place to be! It’s organic and unpretentious vibe creates a relaxed space for you to catch up with friends or to simply relax on your own with a good book and a great cup of coffee. Highly recommended.
Other noteworthy information: We L O V E the bespoke cups in which the beverages are served. They are such a delight to hold that you just want to keep wrapping your hands around them. Rizki (owner of But First Coffee) explained that they are made by a friend of his, and will be available for purchase in the near future. Join the queue if you want some!
2. Caswell’s Coffee
Caswell’s Coffee isn’t a new face in the coffee crowd of Jakarta. In fact it was established in early 1999 and although it has experienced many changes since its early days, one constant is their commitment to serving the freshest specialty coffees in Indonesia. Caswell’s Coffee uses both Indonesian beans as well as coffee from across the globe, including South America and Africa. This ensures that they are always able to deliver a consistently high product. As we walked in the door we peered into the roasting room. There before us were the roasters preparing the beans from the burlap sacks. To witness the art (and aroma) of roasting coffee beans first hand is a lovely, authentic experience.
Jl. Ampera Raya No. 9
Ibukota Jakarta 12560
We like to sip: Visiting with a group of friends, I encouraged everyone to sample a variety of coffees but as it was morning, we each selected the comfort of a milky coffee: flat white and cappuccino. Verdict? A really balanced, easy to drink coffee. The only suggestion? If you like your coffee hot, you may need to specifically request this.
Why this place? Caswell’s Coffee has a proven track record. Any business, especially in Jakarta’s hospitality industry that has stood the test of time must be doing something right (or a lot of things right!) Caswell’s are genuinely interested in honing their craft and passion for all things coffee including roasting and blending their own coffee, using, understanding (and selling) quality coffee machinery, investing in their staff as qualified graders, cuppers and roasters and providing efficient, friendly and knowledgable customer service.
Other noteworthy information: As a dog owner, I was delighted to discover that there is a generous assigned space adjacent to the cafe where dogs are allowed to run off-lead. The area is fully-fenced and of course all dogs must be vaccinated and de-sexed. There is seating outside, overlooking the park where you can sip your coffee whilst supervising your dog. For your information, the Rules and Regulations for the Dog Park are included in the Gallery (at the bottom of this post).
3. Giyanti Coffee Roastery
I can’t remember who originally told Liz and I about Giyanti Coffee Roastery in Menteng but I recall they shared the information like it was a carefully guarded secret. And after multiple visits, I can understand why. Giyanti take their coffee seriously and so do their clients, who are reluctant to share their coffee spot with too many others. Sparking up a conversation with Giyanti’s owner, Hendrik, Liz and I quickly learned that he is happy to keep Giyanti’s profile more discrete, with the focus firmly fixed on achieving quality of product. Interestingly, I think Giyanti’s reputation is becoming widely recognised and whether it is planned or not, Giyanti is on the lips of all coffee aficionados in Jakarta. Giyanti roast their own coffee beans on site, sourcing from across the Indonesian archipelago as well as roasting beans from South America and Africa.
Jl. Surabaya No. 20
Sunday – Tuesday: closed for roasting
Wednesday – Saturday: 9.30am – 5.30pm
Ph: 021 3192 3698
We like to sip: A bit of everything! Their macchiato (pictured below) gave me the caffeine hit that I needed after a week of very early morning starts. Giyanti’s flat white and cappuccino are also top notch (see image above for the flat white). Accompanying our coffee, we enjoyed pandan cake (a chiffon cake that is light and not overly sweet) and a lamington, which was delicious!
Why this place? Quite simply, they do fantastic coffee; whether you want to grab some beans or sit and enjoy your coffee, it is sure to hit the spot. Giyanti also makes some delicious cakes, biscuits and sweets. My favourite is the lamington which is the perfect balance of chocolate and sponge cake, all rolled in desiccated coconut. Giyanti’s lamingtons are almost as good as my Mum’s (I did say almost!)
The location of the venue is also noteworthy. Giyanti Coffee Roastery is located just across the road from the famous antique and bric-a-brac markets of Jl. Surabaya. Once you have finished rummaging through the wares, you can cross the road and find yourself in a delightful setting surrounded by good coffee, quality food and attentive service. Likewise, if you have just taken the kids to nearby Taman Suropati (as featured in our park special Green Spaces in Jakarta), then a just reward is a pit stop at this place. So you can please everyone, after all.
Other noteworthy information: According to Giyanti’s webpage, they serve Jakarta’s best homemade apple pie. Although we are yet to try it, we encourage you to give it a go and let us know what you think! If their traditional pandan cake or their lamingtons are anything to go by, we’re sure you won’t be disappointed.
4. Headline Coffee
Have you heard the saying ‘good things come in small packages’? Well, this sums up Headline Coffee to a T! Blink and you’ll miss it – but this doesn’t mean that Headline Coffee isn’t worthy of a visit; quite the contrary. Located in the quiet (by Jakarta standards anyway!) and eclectic neighbourhood of Kemang Utara, Headline Coffee offers a great range of single origin coffee from across Indonesia. The cafe space is bright and vibrant and provides a cruisy place to sit and dwell. During our recent visit, the cafe was frequented by customers who were dropping into their ‘local’ for their daily coffee catchup.
Jl. Pejaten Raya No. 33D
Ruku Graha Pejaten
Opening hours: daily from 8am – 10pm
Ph: 021 7199614
Instagram: Headline Coffee
We like to sip: During our most recent visit, Liz treated herself to a cappuccino and cinnamon bun (which she said was delicious). I enjoyed a flat white which was served at the perfect temperature. (Next time I’d request a double shot as I like to really taste my coffee and it was a little on the weaker side for me).
Why this place? Not only is Headline Coffee a great place to visit, it is also perfectly located to grab your coffee on the go, especially if you are heading into the city at peak hour from the Kemang/Pejaten side of town. Grabbing a coffee to accompany you on your journey will help transform your potentially lengthy trip into an enjoyable adventure! Drink in or take away – either way you will be greeted with friendly and knowledgeable service.
Other noteworthy information: Although Headline’s menu isn’t very extensive, what is on offer is fresh and well-priced. And have no fear, Headline provides free WiFi.
5. Lot 9 Bintaro
It was Liz that discovered Lot 9. Every now and then she would find herself in Bintaro, in South West Jakarta and no doubt sniffed out this place through sheer determination (the aroma of freshly brewed coffee must have blown her way). Although there are plenty of mainstream coffee shops in the area, Lot 9 offers an authentic Indonesian menu as well as great coffee all with a very humble price tag.
Jl. Bintaro Utama No. 78
Bintaro, Tangerang Selatan
Opening hours: 10am – 10pm
Ph: 021 22210455
Instagram: Lot 9
We like to sip: Liz enjoyed a consistently good cappuccino and I ordered a latte which was served in a tall glass. It was good but again, it wasn’t as strong as I would like (mental note: ask for a double shot latte if you like a stronger coffee).
Why this place? I love the fact that it is very spacious inside. The street art adorning the walls and the industrial fit out adds a certain edginess to the place. But what really stood out for me was the lush grassed area at the front of the cafe, where kids can play (there’s even a lovely kapok tree that looks perfect for climbing!) In terms of the food menu, there is something to satisfy everyone. We have now been to Lot 9 on many occasions and can attest that the food and beverages are consistently good. If you want to adjust any menu items, the staff are happy to accommodate your wishes.
Other noteworthy information: With martabak taking Jakarta by storm, Lot 9 has its own martabak station within the cafe where you can order this freshly made treat with your favourite toppings. Our only recommendation is that you ask that they go light on the shortening… we are trying to do your heart a favour! Liz and I shared a martabak topped with nutella and crushed peanuts and although it was delicious, it was way too rich for us. We vowed that next time we would pick something a little lighter (yes, there will be a next time!) What is martabak you ask? Check out our story here..
6. Tanamera Coffee
Like Lot 9, Tanamera has recognised that the demand for specialty coffee extends beyond Jakarta’s CBD and Jakarta Selatan. With a highly successful cafe already operating in Jakarta city’s busy Thamrin district, Tanamera recently established a further cafe in Serpong (south-west Jakarta).
* Since posting, Tanamera Coffee has opened in the South. Details below:
Tanamera Coffee – Thamrin City Office Park
Jl. Kebon Kacang Raya
Opening hours: Monday – Sunday 7am – 8pm
Ph: 021 2962 5599/5678
Tanamera Coffee – Serpong
(Adjacent to Summarecon Digital City)
Jl. Scientia Boulevard Gadang no. #GV – 09
Serpong – Tangerang 15810
Tanamera Coffee – Kebayoran
Jl. Ahmad Dahlan no. 16
Tanamera Coffee – Lobby One Pacific Place
We like to sip: When Liz and I last visited Tanamera in Serpong, we both went for a latte. I chose the piccolo version, which due to its bold flavour, was the perfect cup to accompany the kafir lime tart that I selected from the pastry cabinet (it was worth the calories, in case you are wondering!).
Why this place? Tanamera is more than just a slick-looking operation – they really do know their craft. Sourcing Arabica coffee beans from Indonesia’s renowned coffee producing regions, Tanamera freshly roasts their beans in-house, delivering unique single origin and blended coffees. One of ‘a journey bespoke’s’ underlying core values is to support local, and that’s exactly what you are doing when you frequent Tanamera. And if you’re not sure what style coffee you would like, the experienced baristas are able to guide you and possibly even persuade you to try something new.
Other noteworthy information: In March 2015, Tanamera Coffee entered the International Coffee Awards at the prestigious ‘Melbourne International Coffee Exhibition’ event. Tanamera was successful in numerous categories including being awarded ‘Champion International Roaster’ – a wonderful and well-deserved achievement.
Words: Jo Photography: a journey bespoke