Keraton at the Plaza

Keraton at the Plaza

The Royal Treatment

Keraton at the Plaza’s “Royal Weekend Indulgence” is a brunch too grand to limit to just one day.


From October, Jakarta’s Keraton at The Plaza extended its Sunday brunch buffet to cover Saturdays as well, in an event its restaurant Bengawan is calling the “Royal Weekend Indulgence.”

Keraton takes its name from the Javanese word for “palace,” inspiring the royal ambitions of its weekend spread. But the delicacies on offer are by no means limited to local fare. In fact, while Indonesian dishes get their own exclusive space, at Bengawan the seafood and grill stations take centre stage.

The Keraton at the Plaza is housed inside The Plaza complex, overlooking Jakarta’s landmark Welcome statue and fountain. Access is available through Keraton’s main lobby entrance on Jalan Thamrin or via Plaza Indonesia, a high-end shopping destination in Central Jakarta.

Bengawan restaurant is located on the seventh floor, wrapped in wall-length windows that let in the morning sunlight and display views of the city centre. The restaurant’s name means “river,” reflected in its water features, blue-green colour scheme and abundance of potted plants. But on weekends, the focal point of the layout is the food itself.

Upon entering Bengawan, visitors are greeted with an array of brightly coloured desserts and all the temptations of the seafood station – Alaskan king crab, jumbo shrimp, salmon sashimi and oysters that arrive from France every Friday.

An attendant is on hand to shuck oysters, peel shrimps and crack open gargantuan crab claws for anyone who doesn’t want to get their hands dirty. All that’s left to do is grab a few wedges of lemon and lime and enjoy the fresh, natural flavours of the seafood.



Salty seafood at brunch calls for a glass of bubbly, which Bengawan provides in the form of free-flow Billecart-Salmon Champagne. Wine and cocktails are also available free-flow, along with tea, coffee and tropical juice blends. Once the crustaceans are cleared out it’s time to visit the live grill station, where Canadian lobster, Kobe beef and other prime cuts are on display, ready to be cooked to preference.

Guests can discuss directly with the chefs how they’d like their steak or lobster thermidor prepared, or even request something special such as an Indian-style chicken curry. The grilled Canadian lobster almost falls out of the shell on its own, so fresh it seems a shame to smother the tender morsels in cheese or any other topping.

Towards the back window, more international specialties are available on request, with a foie gras station preparing the French dish on hot buttered bread and a live caviar station offering sturia caviar and salmon roe served on freshly made blini pancakes.

Amongst all this activity, the central buffet island offers an eclectic mix of sushi, European cold meats and cous cous salads.

With all the extravagant stations, you might miss the selection of Indonesian dishes lining the window ledge inside heavy clay pots. Carefully prepared specialties such as char-grilled rice wrapped in banana leaves with spiced nuts and vegetables may not be as glamourous as some of the other selections, but they receive just as much care from the chefs. Guests may also miss the freshly baked bread and pastries until the last moment, as the counter is tucked away behind the desserts.

At the extensive dessert stand, local sweets such as pandan-flavoured jellies and pots of fermented cassava and brown rice are given equal footing with rainbow cake and chocolate creations, in contrast to the earlier offerings. Another dessert highlight is the soft-serve ice-cream machine, meant for little kids and big kids alike. Guests can squeeze their own bowl of soft-serve ice creams, with exotic flavours that change every day, such as pandan, hazelnut or banana, and help themselves to handfuls of sprinkles or nuts.

Finally, a freshly brewed espresso helps counter the Champagne head and full brunch belly. Coffee is served with a curled stick of cinnamon, a touch of Indonesia in an otherwise highly international spread.

The Royal Weekend Indulgence brunch is available on Saturdays and Sundays 12.00 pm to 3.00 pm. Rp. 995,000++ per adult, inclusive of free-flow wines, Billecart-Salmon Champagne and cocktails; Rp. 495,000++ per adult, inclusive of free-flow soft drinks, fresh juices & sparkling water; Rp. 248,000++ per child (4-12 years old).