Sub enthusiasts of Indonesia, rejoice, for the day you’ve been waiting for is finally here. After we were collectively pranked by a fake Instagram page, followed by months of speculation, now Subway has officially returned to Indonesia.
Some of us might be old enough to remember that Subway had stores in Indonesia around the ‘90s to the mid 2000s. After the franchise left the country, many Indonesians were only able to enjoy the subs during overseas travels. But now Jakartans can get a taste of their signature sandwiches any time.
Marking its return, Subway today opened its first Indonesian store on the first floor of Cilandak Townsquare (Citos) mall in South Jakarta. This has put an end to the rumors that the chain’s first store in the relaunch would be located in BSD (no specific date has been set for that store’s grand opening). The chain has been brought back to our shores by PT Sari Sandwich Indonesia, a subsidiary of lifestyle retailer Mitra Adiperkasa’s F&B wing PT Map Boga Adiperkasa (MBA).
Coconuts had the privilege of attending a press preview a day before the American sandwich chain kicked off relaunch. If you’d allow us to humblebrag, that means we were among the first people in the country since the mid-2000s to try the subs made by Subway Indonesia.
In a statement released today, the chain promises to bring its experience to Indonesian customers with “flavorful better-for-you options that are convenient, affordable, and made fresh to order.”
“We are honored and encouraged by the strong interest and enthusiasm shown by Indonesians leading to the grand opening of our first Subway restaurant. In line with the changing preferences toward healthy alternative meals, we believe now is a great time to deepen the roots of Subway in Indonesia. We look forward to bringing our iconic brand experience to more guests across Indonesia with our new expansion plans,” Anthony Cottan, MBA’s president director, said in the statement.
For the initial launch, Subway will focus on its classic sandwiches such as Italian B.M.T, Steak & Cheese, Tuna Mayo, Chicken Teriyaki, and Veggie Delight — though it will open to possibilities of launching more subs as well as occasionally featuring localized dishes.
If you’ve never had Subway before, fret not, as the ordering process is actually pretty simple. First off, tell your sandwich artist — what they call the person in charge of preparing and serving subs at Subway — what sub you’d like. After that, you get to choose your bread from the options of Wheat, Italian White, and Honey Oat, into which the sandwich artist will then dump your protein or cold cults and cheese of your choosing. You will then have the option to have your sub toasted, and you can also pick any of the available greens you’d like to be included in your sandwich. Lastly, choose your preferred sauce, et voilà, your sub is ready!
Like any Subway abroad, you have the option of a six-inch sub or a footlong sub — with the former being half the portion of the latter. As for the price, we can say that it’s within the middle range of Jakarta mall food court standards with the Veggie Delight sub a la carte priced at IDR25,000 for the six-inch sub variant and IDR47,000 for the footlong. You can get the six-inch Steak & Cheese a la carte for IDR49,000 and IDR95,000 for the footlong sub. You can also customize your sub as wraps or salad bowls with additional prices of IDR3,000 and IDR17,000, respectively, and all prices are inclusive of tax.
We got to try the Italian BMT with all the vegetables included, except for the pickles and olives, with the BBQ sauce at the suggestion of the sandwich artist in charge of our sub. It was really satisfying to finally bite into our sub after a couple of Subway-less years — damn the pandemic for halting international travel — and we were happy to have such a wholesome late lunch. In retrospect, however, we should’ve trusted our guts and gone with our Sandwich Senses and opted for the honey mayo sauce instead of the BBQ sauce. But then again, whatever rocks your sub, right?
For the cherry on top, we also got to devour the world-famous White Chip Macadamia Nut cookie, which was just the right kind of treat after quite a healthy and filling meal. It was not overly sweet and chewy with just the right amount of crispiness, which made us eager to try their other cookies, namely Chocolate Chips, Double Chocolate, and Oatmeal Raisin.
Just like what happened with other highly-anticipated F&B launches in Indonesia, expect long queues at Subway’s Citos outlet for the first few weeks or even months, and we hope that everyone will still obey health protocols. Subway will only serve dine-in at the moment until it opens for deliveries in early November.
For your information, Subway will open at least three additional restaurants in Jakarta and Tangerang by the end of October, while it aims to open in Bandung, Surabaya and Semarang as well in 2022.
Cilandak Town Square (Citos) 1st floor, South Jakarta
Opening hours: 7am-9pm, daily