Food carts and stalls are ubiquitous, but not always the most desirable places to linger when the heavens open in decidedly rainy city. When the rains come, one good place to head near the western side of the Botanical Gardens is Jalan Selot Food Court # where you’ll find a selection of traditional street-style stalls with seating protected from the elements. Try toge goreng here, literally fried bean sprouts, but this traditional Bogor dish consists of noodles, tofu, sticky rice cake along with the bean sprouts served with a fermented soya bean sauce. Wash it down with a nutmeg and coconut drink. To the west of Jalan Selot, Mang Soleh’s # unassuming warung specialises in sate and duck dishes—innovative, inexpensive and delicious with friendly service.
Offering one of Bogor’s best views on the cheap, the top floor of Bogor Trade Mall (BTM) # houses a food court with an outdoor seating area overlooking the city to Gunung Salak. Live music is performed here most nights too. In the same area, Gumati # enjoys similar views and is a little more upmarket with an extensive selection of standard Indonesian and Western fare (mains 20,000–195,000 rupiah), plus a swimming pool (well it could be a large fountain, but it looked swimmable to us). The menu offers explanations in English so you’ll know what to expect. This place is very popular on weekends, but was almost dead the weeknight we popped by.
A cold beer is not that easy to find in conservative Bogor, but almost next door to Gumati, Salak Sunset Cafe # is a quiet cosy spot to enjoy a sundowner (40,000 rupiah). Standard rice and noodle dishes and some Thai curries are also on the menu for 25,000–35,000 rupiah. For steak (from 75,000 rupiah) and pizza (from 65,000 rupiah), cross the road to Peppino # in a bright diner-style cafe, they serve beer and a range of coffees too.
If you’ve spent the day wandering the Botanical Gardens, you could do worse than taking a break in the delightful Grand Garden Cafe # within the gardens near gate three. The breezy veranda offers views of the manicured lawns and lily ponds. Popular, but comparatively pricey with everything from Chinese to Mexican.
North of the gardens, Saung Pak Ewok # is worth the short trip. The speciality here is sop buah or fruit soup, more or less fruit salad with ice—tasty and refreshing on a hot day. We enjoyed sop buah duren (23,000 rupiah) with creamy durian added into the mix. A range of other snacks and drinks are on offer in this clean modern cafe.
If you’re serious about your coffee, stop in for a fix at Warunk Upnormal # just south of Suang Pak Ewok on Jalan Pajajaran, brewing up house roasted single origin Indonesian coffee from Aceh’s Gayo region and Toraja as well as signature toasts and instant noodles with a variety of toppings. Fun boards games are available to liven up the atmosphere. Open late. This joint is so popular they’ve expanded with branches all over Java from Jakarta to Surabaya.
Nearby along Jalan Pangrango a cluster of modern international cafes and restaurants cater to every taste. Popular Kedai Kita # dishes up Indonesian and Western fare in a relaxed open air setting with woodfire pizza the most demanded menu item (65,000—85,000 rupiah).
If you have a craving for some baked goods, cross the road to Pia Apple Pie # for all kinds of pies, savoury and sweet, with even an apple pie shake on offer. More substantial Indonesian favourites include some with an apple twist such as apple fried rice (39,000 rupiah).
A little to the west, near Jalan Jendral Sudriman, Doea Tjangkir # had just opened its doors at the time of research in October 2017 in a delightfully restored stylish colonial building next door to Wisma Bogor Permai. Enjoy Sundanese traditional food in the antique-filled colonial setting or venture to the garden for a more relaxed ambience.
Bogor Trade Mall Food Court Level 3, 68 Jalan Insinyur Haji Djuanda, Bogor; Mo–Su: 10:00–22:00.
Doea Tjangkir 40 Jalan Sawojajar, Bogor; T: (0251) 754 7385; https://www.doeatjangkir.com Mo–Su: 10:00–22:00.
Grand Garden Cafe Gate 3, Kebun Raya Bogor, 13 Jalan Insinyur Haji Djuanda, Bogor; T: (0251) 857 4070; Mo–Su: 09:00–23:00.
Gumati Gumati: 26-28 Jalan Paledang, Bogor; T: (0251) 831 3422; http://www.gumaticafe.co.id Mo–Su: 10:00–23:00.
Jalan Selot Food Court Jalan Selot, Bogor; Mo–Sa: 08:00–17:00.
Kedai Kita 21 Jalan Pangrango, Bogor; T: (0251) 832 4160; http://kedai-kita-restaurant.business.site/ Mo–Su: 08:00–23:00.
Mang Soleh 3 Jalan Polisi I, Bogor; T: (0818) 0846 8891, (0856) 7628 866, (0815) 1343 0611; https://www.facebook.com/SateBeureumMangSoleh/ Mo–Su: 16:00–23:00.
Peppino 41 Jalan Paledang, Bogor; T: (0251) 836 3989; https://www.facebook.com/Peppino-House-1524876584397912/ Mo–Su: 09:00–23:00.
Pia Apple Pie 10 Jalan Pangrango; T: (0251) 832 4169; https://www.facebook.com/PIA-Apple-Pie-662332510487831/ Mo–Su: 07:00–22:00.
Salak Sunset Cafe 38 Jalan Paledang, Bogor; T: (0251) 32 107; https://www.facebook.com/Salak-Sunset-Cafe-220535024625773/ Mo–Su: 16:00–23:00.
Saung Pak Ewok 31 Jalan Papandayan, Bogor; T: (0815) 831 1174; http://www.pakewok.com Sa–Th: 10:00–21:00.
Warunk Upnormal 2 Jalan Pajajaran, Bogor; T: (0812) 8776 1817; https://www.warunkupnormal.com Mo–Su: 10:00–02:00 .
Sally spent twelve years leading tourists around Indonesia and Malaysia where she collected a lot of stuff. She once carried a 40kg rug overland across Java. Her house has been described as a cross between a museum and a library. Fuelled by coffee, she can often be found riding her bike or petting stray cats. Sally believes travel is the key to world peace.