Dear fellow tasters,
The director from my former workplace once treated us, the project team, for a Friday lunch and afternoon coffee at a humble Makassar coffee shop called Phoenam. The occasion: a colleague’s farewell from the company. The location: Phoenam branch on Jalan Wahid Hasyim. These coffee shops originate from Makassar which is quite known for its Toraja coffee or Torabika (Toraja Arabica). A Chinese family founded this business back in Makassar decades ago and several branches are now scattered around Jakarta.
There are no fancy decors and snazzy ambience here though it’s kind of nice that they provide separate rooms, one on the front for slow-suicidal smokers and a cool air-conditioned area for non-smokers in the back. Also, there are no cappuccino or caffè latte on the menu, just plain black or white/milk Phoenam coffee and some limited food items.
I decided to order the iced Phoenam milk coffee because it’s a scorching hot day and everyone were also having a bowl of the traditional beef soup coto Makassar. The coffee had that strong Arabican taste with a hint of sourness and bitterness which definitely woke me up and made me perky and chipper in an instant. Coto is a variation of the commonly known beef or chicken soup in Indonesia. Different versions exist from different regional origins but coto is a trademark beef soup from Makassar, South Sulawesi. The coto Makassar at Phoenam tasted very rich and savory with a strong flavorsome beef-mixed-with-different-kinds-of-spices broth. Beef dices were generously served in a small bowl accompanied by two types of rice cakes, ketupat and buras, to fulfill the carbohydrate portion of the meal.
For dessert, my ex-boss ordered some toast or roti bakar to share, some with butter and kaya jam and some with extra cheese. Although the bread was just common white bread, the kaya filling tasted deliciously sweet and mingled perfectly with the salty cheese and butter. For a coffee shop, Phoenam is definitely recommended if you’re looking for strong and affordable Indonesian coffee to accompany a fulfilling lunch or just a hangout with kaya toast snacks.
A coffee a day keeps the sleepiness away…
The taster’s notes:
Favorite dish – liked the coffee, coto Makassar and the toasts
What to try next time – will try the hot coffee and other food
Damage unknown cause I didn’t do the paying, I’m guessing less than 100k/pax