It is rare in Singapore to find authentic Chinese-Indonesian food, yet we found a restaurant that meets that exact criteria and smashes all our expectations out of the park. All the way from Glodok, Jakarta's Chinatown, Blue Waves Food Empire brings you a brand new concept boasting a solid mix of Chinese and traditional Indonesian influences.
The restaurant is a mishmash of concrete, traditional coffee shop tables and colourful paintings of indo-chinese women on the walls, which brings the whole place to life. It's full of vibrance and the entire dining experience is one that will leave you with a tingling sense of excitement.
But don’t get us wrong, you’re sure to feel relaxed here especially with their cocktails! Petak Sembilan, a cocktail made of whiskey, ginger ale and lemon is a great one to start with. From 6pm-7:30pm daily Kota 88 offers a ridiculously awesome deal of a selection of cocktails at only ($5.88++). This was one of our favourites for the night. But if that's not enough, you can enjoy the liquid buffet for ($31.88++) p/p from 9pm-12am which gives you over 96 alcoholic and non-alcoholic drinks from the free flow list for up to 2 hours! Now that's a deal that will draw all the east-siders in for a fantastic night ahead.
Of course, we couldn’t wait to sample the food here as well. After our liquid appetiser, we were ready to tackle the mains. The chefs came out of the kitchen for a live carving session of the Babi Paggang which is a suckling pig for ($38.88) for a single portion. The skin was extremely crispy and cooked to perfection.
We also had a traditional Nasi Campur Babi ($12.88) which is their version of a pork mixed rice alongside some iconic Indonesian treats such as siomay, ngo hiang, braised pig ear and soy egg with an ultra-fragrant chicken rice.
Next we moved on to the Kepiting Saus Padang ($55.88) — a Sri Lankan crab that was cooked perfectly with a rich sweet, salty and sour sauce. It was extremely fresh and one of the best crab dishes I have tasted in Singapore with its famous Padang sauce that brought the whole plate to life!
Sate-Babi is a popular street food item served in Indonesia and a hot favourite here. These 10 sticks ($15.88) came with a few different flavours - Sate Babi Manis (sweet marinated pork), Sate Babi Asin (savoury marinated pork), Sate Ati (pork liver), Sate Usus (pork intestines) and Sate Kulit (pork skin). So if you are huge fan of pork, you will certainly love this dish. This comes with a homemade chilli sauce on the side which I must say is fantastic.
This is a Babat Jarit Cah Tauge ($17.88), a stir-fried beef tripe with bean sprouts. Those who are a fan of tripe will love this. However, this is not my cup of tea. The rest at the table came to the consensus that this was a stellar dish!
The heart-warming Sup Baikut ($15.88), an Indonesian-style pork ribs and salted vegetable soup, was to die for. It had a bitter, sour and salty taste and one you would find familiar if you’ve grown up drinking soups at home.
We ended with our meal with the very classic Indonesian dessert, Es Teler ($6.88), a refreshing dessert layered with coconut, avocado, jackfruit and shaved ice.
The food here was certainly one of the best Asian restaurants I have tried in Singapore with honest home-cooked dishes, though it was a little too much pork for my liking! But they have an extensive menu that is worth coming back for more.