AB Steak by Chef Akira Back at MD Place Building Setiabudi Jakarta

April 17th, 2017. I was invited to Media and Bloggers luncheon. It was very exciting. A new place. You know about Akira Back, right? Yes. There’s connection between this place and Akira Back. Turn out, this is the latest brainchild by Chef Akira Back. It’s a modern Korean Steakhouse with American style. AB Steak.


Chef Akira Back stays true to his take on cultural merging, mixing flavors and tastes of his Korean origin along with a variety of other cuisines in an exotic fashion. The innovative steakhouse concept has been developed by Chef Back for quite some times and Jakarta has been chosen to be the first city to open AB Steak. The restaurant’s door opens in April 2017 with a commitment to deliver high quality service, comfort, style and memorable experience.

The experience was like in a movie. We came in. It’s dark. A lot of meat in there. People walked around. There’s fire on the wall. Yeah, not really fire, it’s more like live wallpaper. It’s still dark. I know! We’re like coming into a private party of mafia kingpin! LOL. The difference from the movie, in AB Steak, there’s no dancing pole. Hahaha. Yup, trust me. Not even one. *please be serious Yen..* Ok, I’m not lying. It’s like private party. I could feel the elegant and luxury ambiance. There’re paper cranes on the wall. It’s so beautiful. Well, let’s begin the steak-party!

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Shitake Croquette 225k

Sea Urchin, Sweet Shrimp Kejang, Smoked Potato Foam, Caviar

My favourite! Can you imagine? Sea Urchin with Caviar on top of croquette. Tasted marvelous. The sweet shrimp kejang was also very delightful. It’s not every day I could eat kejang. The smoked potato foam was in a quite rich creamy texture even though it’s form as a foam. Super recommended!

Gejang or gejeot is a variety of jeotgal, salted fermented seafood in Korean cuisine, which is made by marinating fresh raw crabs either in ganjang or in a sauce based on chili pepper powder.

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Amberjack “Carpaccio” 195k

Roasted Jalapeno Salsa, Oranges, Blood Orange Soy

Beautiful presentation. The lovely colour of the raw amberjack fish, blend charmingly with the colour of oranges and roasted jalapeno salsa and blood orange soy. The fresh spicy and tangy flavour of the dish was really strong. I only ate one beautiful slice of amberjack and it’s enough. The flavour burst in my mouth. Ulalaaaa..

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Scallop Crudo 135k

Chive & Kimchee Gel, Jicama, Truffle Yuja Soya

Crudo means raw in Spanish. So it means raw scallop. And it was beautiful. It’s glazy and divine in presentation. But the flavour was very strong for my palate. The sour and tangy flavour. If you like sour and tangy flavour, this is for you, then. An eye-opener starter.

Pachyrhizus erosus, commonly known as jicama, Mexican yam bean, or Mexican turnip, is the name of a native Mexican vine, although the name most commonly refers to the plant’s edible tuberous root.

Citrus junos or yuzu (from Japanese ユズ) is a citrus fruit and plant in the family Rutaceae. It is called yuja (from Korean 유자) in Korean cuisine context.

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Steamed Bun 150k

Bbq Duck, Seared Foie gras, Ssamjang hoisin

Such a delicate bun. And I think it’s very genius to serve bun with tender duck and seared foie gras. And the bun was very delicate. Ok, I said it twice. But it’s true. I just rolled the bun, put those delicious in my mouth. And it’s literally melted. Yes, melted in my mouth. This is one of my favourites too.

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Black Mussels 135k

Meatballs, Crispy Rice Cake, Kochujang Butter Sauce

Love this one too. Wow, it’s getting better! The black mussels were a rare ones. So, it’s really lucky for me to try this one. It was very delicious. I prefer they made the meatballs larger, of course. But those mini meatballs were scrumptious. Those little.. errrr.. ok now let’s talk about the crispy rice cake. It was pretty amazing. Sometimes they made the tteobokki quite hard to chew. But this one was pretty soft. Don’t ask about the butter sauce. I wanted to put warm rice on top of it. Huft.. I should did that! 😦

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Steak Tartare 185k

Roasted Bone Marrow, Wagyu Tartare, Pine Nuts

At first I ate only the wagyu tartare. Then I combined with the roasted bone marrow. And it was unbelivable. The flavour changed all at once. As you know, bone marrow tastes meaty and buttery. Umami!

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AB’s Caesar 110k

Grilled Romaine, Grilled Salmon, Herbed Yogurt Caesar Dressing, Caramel Mac-nuts

I think it’s caesar salad a la AB Steak. The romaine grilled perfectly, mingled impeccably with the well-seasoned salmon. The caramel macadamia enhanced the texture of the salad. Recommended!

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After those starters, let’s move to the main course. And they served five dipping sauces: Sesame Oil, Bulgogi, Wasabi, Ssamjang and Chimichurri. My favourite was the sesame oil. 🙂




They categorized 6 types. Hokkaido “Snow” Rib Eye A5 850k per 100gr, Hokkaido “Snow” NY Strip A4 850k per 100gr, Flat Iron Steak A4 225k per 100gr, Chuck Eye Steak A4 385k per 100gr, Rump A4 325k per 100gr and Knuckle A4 185k per 100gr.

Flat Iron Steak 300gr 675k

Tender wagyu beef with melt-in-your-mouth texture. Super juicy.

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They categorized 6 types also. 60 days Whiskey Aged Bone-In Wagyu Ribeye MBS +6 123k per 100gr, 45 days Porterhouse (500gr minimum) 185k per 100gr, 45 days T-bone (500gr minimum) 178k per 100gr, 45 days Bone-in Ribeye (300gr minimum) 199k per 100gr, 21 days Kiwami Wagyu Top Sirloin 9+ 168k per 100 gr and 15 days Belgian White Tongue 160k per 100gr.

45 days – Porterhouse 500gr 925k

200 days grain fed

I could still hear the sizzling sound they made. They added apple wood chips in the charcoal. Smell so good. Juicy and tender meat. OMG. But I prefer it grilled in medium well. Melt-in-your-mouth!

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45 days – Bone-In Ribeye 300gr 597k

200 days grain fed

Same texture with same flavour. Aaaargh, after tried 3 kinds of meat, I still couldn’t choose which one is the best. Since they all were delicous, juicy, tender and melt-in-your-mouth. Well I think, you should try them all. OMG! To-die-for!

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Coconut Mochi Cake 65k

Butter Mochi Cake, Salted Caramel Popcorn & Macadamia, Coconut Sorbet

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Molten Chocolate Soufflé 150k

Valrhona, Pinenut Streusel, Vanilla Frangelico Ice Cream

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Brandy & Maple With Nashi & Crepe Flambé 150k

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OK, from those three desserts, my favourite was the Molten Chocolate Soufflé. The mochi cake was just ok for me. Maybe because I don’t really like mochi. And the crepe flambé was just a sweet crepe with additional of brandy flavour. Those two were delicious, but I love the molten chocolate soufflé more. The texture of the soufflé was flawless. Super recommended.


Thank you AB Steak for the lovely luncheon. Wagyu see is Wagyu get. Grilling on April 23rd, 2017 – currently only for dinner. Be prepared, people!

AB Steak by Chef Akira Back
MD Place Building
Mezzanine Floor
Jl. Setiabudi Selatan No. 7
Setiabudi, Jakarta
Phone: +62 21 2966 9272
IG: @absteakjakarta


Ristorante da Valentino at MD Place Setiabudi Jakarta

February 6th, 2017. This was my first time. Actually I heard about this place a long long time ago. But I thought it was one fine dining restaurant. I was afraid to come there. I was afraid that they have dress code. Fine dining always made me felt insecure. So, when finally I came to this ristorante, I was relieved as it wasn’t intimidating at all. Ristorante da Valentino.


Ristorante Da Valentino, the much-anticipated Award Winning restaurant, is finally open in Jakarta Indonesia starting January 19, 2015. Originally started by Chef Valentino and his wife Patricia in July 2005, Ristorante Da Valentino was a 45-seater family managed Italian restaurant located in a residential area along Rifle Range Road in Singapore. The restaurant has a relaxing and cozy ambiance with decorations very much like an Italian home, where Chef Valentino’s mother helped served the food while his sister Perla worked in the kitchen, with brother in law Alberto managing the dining area. Now you can finally experience yourself the much talk about dining experience in Ristorante Da Valentino Jakarta.

Located in MD PLACE building, Ristorante Da Valentino instantly made me feel with warmth and luxury ambiance for the moment. They have 4 private rooms with different paintings, and a casual dining with a seating capacity up to 100 people. I felt at home actually because their hospitality with a very attentive people. Actually, when I was there, I saw one person from online food delivery. He was amazed by the place. He took photos there. And he smiled at me and said, “This place is very pretty.” I nodded with pride. Hahahaha.. Proud because I was there with him. LOL! By the way, I will meet Ellyna! Yaaaay!

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With a team of excellent Chefs and Managers awaiting your arrival to serve you with the highest quality food and service, it is assured that your dining experience here would not be easily forgotten. You can rest assured that Chef Marco, Chef Valentino’s cousin, will serve you only the best and nothing but the best.

Ice Lychee Tea


Complimentary Bread

Love the green sauce. Mostly it was celery. But it’s very delicious. The texture of the bread was also perfect. Freshly baked bread was always a darling.

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Ristorante da Valentino’s
Business Lunch 180k++ per pax


Rucola E Parmigiano
Rocket salad with shaved parmigiano

Vitello Tonnato
Thinly-sliced veal loin garnished with a creamy tuna sauce

Funghi Trifolati
Mixed gourmet mushrooms sauteed with butter and garlic


They also served Funghi Trifolati in actual portion, and it was very delicious. The texture of the mushrooms were overwhelming. Juicy, chewy, tender, with butter and garlic. It was simple but melt my heart away.

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Zuppa Ai Frutti Di Mare

Spicy seafood and tomato soup flavoured with garlic, chili and white wine

At first, I wanted to share it with El. But turned out, I wanted it all.  Sorry El. *big grin* They gave a generous amount of seafood. The shell was my favourite. A very memorable dish. It was literally a single bowl topped with seafood and filled with tomato soup. Fresh one!

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Fettuccini Al Granchio

Signature squid ink fettuccini tossed with crabmeat in a creamy tomato sauce

The homemade squid ink fettuccine was in a perfect al dente texture. Smothered in generous creamy and tangy sauce that balancing the flavour of this pasta. And the crabmeat was dabomb with generous portion. The presentation wasn’t that charming but it was super recommended dish!

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Risotto Al Guanciale Stufato
Traditional Italian rice cooked with braised beef cheeks


Salmone Al Pepe Rosa
Pan-seared Norwegian salmon with a creamy pink peppercorn sauce


Tagliata Di Manzo + 120k
Tender, thin slices of Wagyu Steak

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The actual size of Tagliata Di Manzo. It was tender and juicy and delightful. It’s actually a simple dish with a great way to serve a seared piece of fillet. The potato ball really enhanced the texture of the wagyu steak.




Vanilla ice-cream submerged in freshly brewed espresso

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Risotto Funghi Porcini in Parmesan Wheel 255k

Traditional Italian rice cooked with gourmet porcini mushrooms in grana padano wheel

A fun way to make this one. The Chef cooked the risotto inside the grana padano wheel. Very fun looking at the impassioned Chef. When it came to my plate, it was not pretty at all. A plate of cheese risotto. That’s all. Hahaha. But when I tasted it, it blew my mind. The grana padano cheese enhanced the creamy texture of risotto. Love it.

Grana Padano is a hard, slow-ripened, semi-fat cheese from Italy, comparable to Parmigiano Reggiano or “parmesan” cheese. Grana Padano has had protected designation of origin status since 1996. It is made from milk produced in the Po River valley.

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Bistecca Alla Griglia 950k (350gr) 1.800k (700gr)

Tender grilled Australian stockyard rib eye (marbling score 6/7) topped with rocket salad, tomatoes and lemon

SO IN LOVE! It smelled so good, I was spellbound. This mouth-watering rib eye was worth it and really impressed me. Finger-licking good. Tender, for sure. Juicy, absolutely. I didn’t know about Ellyna, but I just can’t get enough of it. Hahaha.

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Served in a dessert glass, it was definitely one of the best tiramisu. Tiramisu is the most favourite dessert in Italy. Collaboration between mascarpone, lady finger, liquor and coffee. Fantastic. Melt in my mouth. Rich and creamy with light texture.


Thanks to Chef Marco Tremolada, cousin of Chef Valentino, for those delicious Italian cuisines. Pssst.. he’s not just amazing in his cooking, he’s also very cute. Ladies, prepare to be bedazzled.


Ristorante da Valentino
MD PLACE, 11th Floor
Jl. Setiabudi Selatan No. 7
Setia Budi, Jakarta
Phone: +62 21 29057888
IG: @valentino_jkt