F&B trends come and go every few years, but good steaks are here to stay — that’s why legit smokehouses like Meatsmith are always a welcome addition to Jakarta’s dining scene.
Hailing from Singapore, the American smokehouse recently opened its Jakarta restaurant on Gunawarman street – a burgeoning hip eateries hub and South Jakarta’s Senopati area. Meatsmith is owned and operated by the people behind Singapore’s famed Michelin-starred bar and grill, Burnt Ends, and was brought to Indonesia by Ateria Group, the same company that operates trendy brands such as SaladStop! and % Arabica.
We were recently invited to try some of Meatsmith’s offerings, and we wish we had more capacity in our stomach to devour more of their smoky goodness. The Jakarta restaurant pays tribute to the Americana and barbeque culture, as seen from the décor and overall design.
The restaurant features a semi-outdoor area downstairs, while the bar, two private dining rooms, a wine cellar, and a VIP corner are in the main dining area upstairs. A dry-aged meat display greets the patrons just before they head upstairs — even the stairs are beautifully decorated with hanging lamps and a display of liquor bottles.
Our feast began with samples of four starters: the Pastrami Burnt Ends, Scotch Quail Eggs with Caviar (IDR50,000), Beef Brisket Spring Rolls (IDR65,000), and Salmon Tataki Taco (IDR98,000).
We thought the pastrami adequately prepared our palate for the main event, with its subtle smoky flavor and just the right amount of salt. The brisket spring rolls, which is described to incorporate brisket marmalade, was more on a sweet side. While the rolls are flavorful enough on their own, the BBQ aioli adds a nice, tangy kick.
The Scotch Quail Eggs features, well, smoked quail egg inside minced chicken sausage with a breaded outer layer, which makes the dish quite a filling starter. The Salmon Tataki Taco made a light, ideal appetizer if you don’t want to go all out before you even begin.
Moving on to the mains, we were served four meat dishes accompanied with Charred Broccoli (IDR78,000), Caesar Salad (IDR120,000), and Cornbread (IDR40,000) for the sides. The broccoli and caesar salad gave much-needed balance to all the meat dishes we had that day, while the cornbread was more on the sweeter side due to the honey drizzled on top. We were told by the friendly waiter not to use too much of the smoked butter due to its strong smoky taste, and he was right — just a bit at the edge of our fork was enough for a bite of cornbread.
We had a 300g medium rare Ribeye (IDR450,000, a la carte), which was described as “150-day Grain Fed Australian Black Angus.” While we didn’t struggle chewing the meat (many wannabe steakhouses in Jakarta commit this cardinal sin), the Jakarta-exclusive menu, Beef Short Ribs (IDR475,000, a la carte), stole the show for us.
The short ribs, which were smoked for 12 hours, were tender, flavorful, and you can easily pick the meat apart with a fork. The Sweet Corn Cheddar Puree that came with the short ribs was an interesting combination as the flavor reminded us of cheese-flavored Cheetos, while the watercress and pickled onion gave a nice touch of freshness to the otherwise heavy meal.
The Jerk Chicken Chop (IDR145,000, a la carte) and Salmon Steak (IDR188,000) are great beef alternatives. The chicken was well-seasoned while the sweet and sour mango salsa balanced out the saltiness. On the other hand, the salmon steak was drenched in a combination of smoked roasted tomato, olives, capers and topped with fried kale. Just when we thought it would turn out like the usual salmon steak, we were surprised to find that its flavor was akin to that of smoked salmon while the vegetables became a much-welcomed company to the fish without overpowering the flavor.
Additionally, the restaurant serves three kinds of meat platters for 2 to 5 people, featuring items such as Beef Brisket, Jerk Chicken Chop, Beef Short Ribs, and Grilled Lobster along with a selection of starters with prices ranging from IDR620,000 to IDR2,950,000.
Lastly, we were served a dessert of Marshmallow Skewer (IDR45,000) — who would say no to melted marshmallows with crispy caramelized outer layers? — and a Lemon Curd Cheesecake (IDR78,000). While the latter typified a classic American cheesecake, the thick lemon curd layer made us pucker slightly.
We also tried a signature cocktail called the Sloe Gin Negroni (IDR210,000), made of Antica Formula Italian vermouth, Campari, Monkey 47 Sloe Gin, and Bulldog Gin. While the first sip made us feel a welcome burning sensation in our throat, the drink left us with a lingering sweetness afterwards.
Jl. Gunawarman No. 17, Kebayoran Baru, South Jakarta
Opening hours: 5pm-9pm, daily
RSVP through Whatsapp: +62 811-9760-2000