Seems like we have one more reason to go to the newly-reopened Sarinah, as Atsiri di Sarinah recently opened their space at the historic mall.
Atsiri is an Indonesian umbrella term for essential oils, and Rumah Atsiri Indonesia is a brand of wellness products such as oils, home fragrance, personal care items, snacks and tisanes (herbal tea), among others. They have a fully integrated complex in the Tawangmangu district of Karanganyar regency, Central Java built around a restored Indonesian-Bulgarian citronella factory in 1963.
The complex houses facilities for Rumah Atsiri Indonesia’s production and research as well as edu-recreation for the public such as aromatic gardens, museum, restaurant, and shops.
As one would expect, Atsiri di Sarinah is a mini extension of Rumah Atsiri Indonesia’s facility. Quoting from their description of both locations: “Rumah Atsiri Indonesia is an aromatic wellness destination, while Atsiri di Sarinah is its experimental playground.”
I recently went to Atsiri di Sarinah, which only opened in early June, after having seen the experience online — and being a relatively new fragrance enthusiast, I’d like to know what my “aura” would smell like. The space consists of three sections: mini museum, shop, and restaurant.
The mini museum tour is walk-in only at the moment, held every 20 minutes with a maximum of five visitors per session. At IDR45,000 per person, the tour also includes a discount for the Aroma Persona Custom Shop, or your customized product at the shop. After the registration, I took a questionnaire to find out my “aroma persona,” and the result shows that my “aura” smells like rosemary, lemon, cedarwood, and clary sage.
The tour begins with a room of essential oil plants in kokedama — a Japanese planting technique that literally means “moss ball” — hanging from the ceiling. Just next to the plants are four in-wall glass bowls filled with scents of four plants that emanate from air-filled bubbles, namely lemongrass, citronella, patchouli, and geranium.
Next up is the 3D visualization room, which shows up to 100 essential oil plants on the screen. Lastly is the Aroma Persona Room where you can play or take photos and videos of you playing with the colors from the quiz taken before the tour that are projected on the wall. As for me, I got hues of yellow, green, and purple.
The tour ended at the shop, and that’s where you can create and purchase your own customized products. You can choose from hand sanitizer, head-to-toe wash, body oil, and body lotion using the essential oils based on your aroma persona quiz result or the scent you created yourself.
I chose not to make any changes to my result, and created a 100 mL body lotion (IDR150,000 before the tour discount) using the essential oils mentioned above. The steps are pretty simple: you measure the product of your choosing in a beaker glass and drop the oils into it before mixing it well.
You can also write anything you like on the label, so I chose a song from EXO’s Suho’s second album Grey Suit, Morning Star, because I thought it suits the scent well. After I was done with the process, I was told to wait for 24 hours before opening and using my customized lotion. Now that I’m done with the waiting period at the time of writing, my aroma persona smells herby and fresh.
In case you’re not too familiar with Rumah Atsiri Indonesia, the brand has three signature scents: the citrusy and fresh 1963 (lemon and lemongrass), warm and sweet Buai (cinnamon), and the soothing and romantic Rayu (lavender) — I chose the latter for my small aromatic candle jar (IDR120,000).
Wellness dining at Atsiri Eat
After the short tour, making my own body lotion concoction, picking my scented candle, and purchasing them, it was time for me to try their food offerings at their restaurant, Atsiri Eat. At my time of visit, the three menu sets were not available so I had to resort to the a la carte items. There are explanations for the wellness ratio for each dish in the menu book as well as the health benefits, namely healthy diet, energy booster, and immune support.
I chose one of their signature tea blends, 1963 Tisane (IDR38,000), for my drink. Consisting of lemongrass, pandan, dried lemon, and lemongrass oil, the herbal tea is available hot only and I thought I tasted more pandan than lemongrass.
For starters, I picked Rosemary Polenta Fries (IDR66,000), which are crispy polenta fries with homemade vegan tartar sauce and air-fried rosemary on top. I really enjoyed this one, as the polenta fries were not oily and when they’re enjoyed with the arugula salad as well as the fresh and light vegan tartar sauce, they combined together in my mouth.
I picked Lemongrass Salmon Bumbu Genep (IDR155,000) for mains, after contemplating between Spicy Opor Chicken Penne (IDR110,000), Creamy Spinach Penne (IDR155,000), and even Katsu Teriyaki Sandwich (IDR75,000). It consisted of grilled lemongrass salmon served with Uduk risotto, sautéed spinach and tomato, orek oats and sambal creme as the sauce circling the dish.
The grilled salmon cut was pretty big and tasty, though I thought the lemongrass seasoning was overpowered by the taste of the fish. However, the risotto uduk — which sounded intriguing to me because it’s the risotto version of nasi uduk (rice cooked in coconut milk) — gradually became too heavy on my palate and stomach as the dining went by. The sambal creme was pretty tangy but it wasn’t spicy for me.
Overall, my first experience at Atsiri di Sarinah was enjoyable though I’d prefer to go with my friends on my next visit, and I’d definitely try the other main course and the desserts — the Banoffee Cake and Earl Grey Panna Cotta (both IDR65,000) were so tempting but I unfortunately only had a limited time and stomach capacity.
Atsiri di Sarinah
Sarinah Community Mall 5th floor, Jl. M.H. Thamrin No. 11 Menteng, Central Jakarta
Opening hours: 12pm-9pm (Eat & Shop); 12pm-8pm (mini museum); daily
RSVP for Atsiri Eat and more information can be found through this link
Rumah Atsiri Indonesia
Jl. Watusambang, Plumbon, Tawangmangu, Karanganyar regency, Central Java
Opening hours: 10am-5pm
Phone +62 812 111 222 63