Jakarta’s burger scene has come a long way since the very first McDonald’s opened up here in 1991. Since we last updated this list in 2017, a lot of new contenders have opened up aiming to win the hearts and stomachs of an increasingly sophisticated (and hungry) public. This new list has everything from surprisingly good burgers at IDR23K to fancy fine dining patties topped with foie gras, but what they all have in common is that they’ll satisfy that caveman-like itch for immediate meaty indulgence we all get from time to time.
At a mere IDR23K for a regular beef burger and IDR30K for a double cheeseburger, Qebul Firewood Burger Specialist (previously known as Burger Bakar Qebul or BBQ) is definitely the cheapest burger joint on this list. But it’s also got glowing reviews, which means you’ll almost always find a long line (of mostly delivery drivers) at their Jagakarsa location. It may seem too cheap to be trusted but as Qebul sells no other dish but burgers (not even fries) they can keep costs low while still delivering a very tasty backyard barbecue-style burger.
Qebul Firewood Burger Specialist. Instagram.
One of Jakarta’s best bars also does one of its best burgers. The American Classic Burger comes with cheddar, your choice of pork or turkey bacon and all the fixins. Wrapped up like a fast food burger for ease of handling, it’s a perfectly proportioned burger to hold in one hand while knocking back a beer with the other.
If you love burgers, you should definitely try Five Monkeys, a burger joint that serves simple and fresh Californian style burgers and hotdogs. Five Monkeys was chosen as one of the best 27 burgers in the world by Bloomberg in 2017, and it’s easy to see why. Their burgers are made with high-quality beef patties that are smashed and grilled to perfection, topped with cheese, lettuce, tomato, onion, and their signature sauce, and sandwiched between soft and fluffy buns.
Born in Kuta, Bali, Five Monkeys now has the greatest presence in the Greater Jakarta Area, with six restaurants spread throughout the metropolitan’s prime culinary hotspots.
This Potato Head Group venture is definitely one of Jakarta’s most famous burgers (and, with an outlet in Singapore and a pop-up in Hong Kong, the only burger chain invented in our Ibukota to have gone internasional). We’re partial to the Street Truff (IDR100K), which comes topped with cheese, truffled onion jam and den miso mayo (they’re big on umami-boosting condiments here). Also definitely worth getting the Naughty Fries.
While this list is mostly focused on beef hamburgers, vegetarian burgers deserve more attention these days (especially since some of them are getting ridiculously apparently like the Impossible burger). Local vegan-friendly burger spot Burgreens not only made healthy eating accessible and hip for lots of Jakartans, they also proved it could be profitable given their ubiquity these days.
Le Burger is a burger bar curated by father and son chef duo Jean-Georges & Cedric Vongerichten, located in the heart of SCBD at Alila Hotel. Le Burger offers gourmet burgers made with 100 percent Australian beef patties, fresh buns, and various toppings and sauces, such as cheese, bacon, avocado, truffle mayo, and more. You can also customize your own burger with your preferred ingredients.
Past the gruff exterior are meaty and tasty burgers that are made with premium ingredients and cooked to order. You can choose from their metal-themed burgers such as the Lemmy and the Sabbath Burger, or try their special vegetarian burger, the Joey Bellodonna, with its delightful mushroom patty.
Byurger takes the versatility of burgers seriously. The joint prides on keeping it simple with the Damn Basic, but is also adventurous with global flavors in the likes of the K-pop Sensation and Le Truffle. We especially love creating our own burgers though, where we have complete control to determine what goes on every single layer of our (usually) stacked sandwich.
One of Jakarta’s classiest bars (and ranked one of the best in Asia) does a burger that does the killer cocktails they serve there justice. Thick grilled patty, nicely sharp aged cheddar and bacon are a pairing as classic as gin, Campari and sweet vermouth. Ordering the additional foie gras is probably over the top, but it’s nice to know the option is there…
In Plaza Senayan, Pondok Indah Mall, and PIK Avenue. Website
All of the pubs owned by Dutch bar maven Bartele Santema (his group also includes Eastern Promise, Cazbar, De Burse) have solid menus filled with consistently well made pub grub, but De Hooi gets special mention for its burgers, which fulfill the platonic ideals of what a pub burger should be with a big plump patty stacked tall with fresh toppings.
JJ Royal Brasserie
You might not think it from their unusual decor (something like Japanese goth lolita meets Marie Antoinette) but JJ Royale Brasserie has a surprisingly ambitious menu, including their burgers. One to drool over is the Beef Bacon Burger (IDR99K) featuring an Australian beef patty topped with gooey cheese, fresh veggies, and their signature special sauce. Brunch burgers don’t get much better than that.
One of the things Common Grounds is known for is getting the little details right, from their meticulously brewed coffee down to the plating on their dishes. Their OG Cheeseburger (IDR155K) always seems to come with the cheese melted perfectly just like in their menu picture.
If you’re looking for a satisfying burger fix in Jakarta, you might want to check out Belly Bandit, a burger joint that serves up juicy and flavorful patties with various toppings and sauces. We especially love to make your way up the Bandit Tower burger, with its signature patty, cheese, bacon jam, and onion rings. Plus, you can enjoy your burger with some loaded on the side.
Ask For Patty
If all else fails, Ask For Patty. Inspired by American punk-rock icon Patti Smith, Ask For Patty is known for its signature patty, which is made with Australian beef and smashed on the grill to create a juicy and flavorful burger. You can choose from their classic burgers such as the Classic Patty, the Smasher, or the Cheeseberg, or try their special burgers such as the Patty is Hot and the Salt Lake City. Their donuts aren’t half-bad, either.
Is there a great Jakarta burger that you think is missing from this list? Help out your fellow foodies by leaving your best burger suggestion in the comments below. Selamat makan!