He stood right behind his stage. All set and ready for his showtime. And by stage I mean his hand-made kitchen with big pot of hot boiling water, empty bowls ready to be filled, and giant chopstick to play around with the noodle. In every couple minutes or so he’ll move to the other side of his tiny stall to check on his chasiew being smoked inside a traditional stove. One thing for sure, at any time of the day, he’s ready, the master is all set to cook you one of the best bakmi bagan in town.
The first time I encountered Bakmi Tua Bak was because my dad heard it from a friend of a friend.
Unlike gossips, food probably is the only word-of-mouth that I trust, because it literally goes from one tastebud’s approval to another.
After that, it must have been countless number of visits, delivery orders, and friends that I helped converted to be Bakmi Tua Bak’s evangelist. Current record: 15/17. That’s 88% conversion rate. Not bad at all. Now its your turn. I dare you to try them out.
Here’s a heads up though. Bakmi Tua Bak is a typical Bagansiapi-Api noodle. That’s my hometown, which probably why it suits my appetite really well. Its on the #thinteam. You know, noodles that are thin, somewhat curly and just a tad bit of chewy. It comes with generous amount of pork and dumplings. You can practically dump the dumplings, but behold and prepare to be astounded by their chasiew pork. Overall it is more inclined on the sweet side of the palate.
A pro tips: ask for “Chasio Thau”. Chasio is how the Hokkian’s say Chasiew. Thau literally means head. Together it means the thicker cut of a chasiew. You’ll thank me for that. It is one of smokiest chasiew I’ve ever tasted. Use your nose to savor it. Best!
Getting there is a bit of a hassle, but that’s the fun part of it. I’ve laid the directions and Google Map locations below to save you the trouble. Let me know what you think.
Btw, is there any Baganese here? Give me a shout out! #BaganPride
Bakmi Tua Bak
(Bakmi Bagan / Bagansiapi-Api style noodle)
Jelambar, Jakarta Utara
How to get here:
On Jalan Tubagus Angke, find Rumah Duka Jelambar on your left, then make a U-Turn right away. Turn left at the first bridge that you see. Take another left. Go straight for about 200m, the noodle stall is on the left side of the road.
Google Map Location