(For photos, please visit the original blog post - http://www.razlan.net/2010/08/the-one-with-the-awesome-roti-prata-gado-gado-solo-indonesian-restaurant/)
It was the end of a long week. My mind was focused resolutely on one thing – beer. A pint of foaming beer in a chilled glass, sipped slowly with my eyes closed.
So as I ascend to the second floor where Solo Indonesian Restaurant is located at, to join my friends for a birthday dinner, you can say my mind was a little disengaged from my surroundings.
Which happens more often than you think.
When we were handed the menu by the decidedly local owners of the place (which was huge, by the way, with plenty of empty tables. I guess they make their money with the office lunch crowd), I looked not at the tempting array of Indonesian food but the selection of draught beer available.
Ah! Carlsberg. Possibly the best beer in the world. That would be perfecto.
It wasn’t until the first dish arrived that I realised I had no idea what was being ordered. Apparently this place is famous for its satays – beef and chicken – and I wasn’t disappointed. Granted, I wish the meat was a little juicier and they weren’t so reserved with their peanut sauce. But it was the best satays I had in Hong Kong.
So there I was with the birthday boy to my left and the golden couple in front of me, we yakked away over pints of beer (not cold enough, I must say) and a delicious plate of gado-gado; a vegetable salad served with a peanut sauce dressing. The sauce was so good (it gotta be the peanut) that we slurped up every drop with the endless servings of keropok (prawn crackers) offered to us.
My friend was entertaining me with his tale of visiting the Ocean Park under the extreme summer heat (he gotta be pretty desperate for a new tourist spot to explore) when I got distracted by a whiff of delicious, buttery smell . Ah, it was the roti prata, the Asian version of flour-based pancake, cooked over a flat grill. Dipped into the equally awesome beef curry, the combination was so tantalising that my attention was finally fully focused on the food.
The table was by then boisterous with chatters as we caught up with each other, and the table heavy with plates after plates of Indonesian goodness. There was this platter of deep fried prawns with egg yolk that was very good (though can be a bit too salty for some) and worth the slightly more expensive price tag. Worthy of mentions for the night include mee goreng (fried noodles, Malays style) and curry chicken.
I was telling my friends that it is not everyday you get to taste such authentic Indonesian food in Hong Kong. Just ask local foodies like Jason and Rita. Considering Solo Indonesian Restaurant was just a stone throw away from my place, I should really visit more often.
You know… when I feel that need for a bit of home, and Indonesian food is close enough.
With that thought a little heavy on my mind, we paid the bill (about HK$800 for a table of seven) and meandered into the night, looking for more beer.