Amidst recurring trends and businesses trying to copy one another, it’s always exciting when someone breaks the current and comes up with a new concept or a different kind of dish. From the same group of passionate people who brought you Yamatoten Abura Soba, comes Zenraku Dashi Chazuke at Grand Indonesia. Zenraku offers a selection of dashi chazuke, a dish that has not received any major attention in Jakarta’s Japanese food scene.
For those of you unfamiliar with dashi chazuke—or simply chazuke, or ochazuke—it is a traditional Japanese food that dates back to the Heian period, which started in year 794. Offering a simple yet heart-warming combination of white rice, tasty toppings, and hot liquid, it remains a popular comfort food in Japan even hundreds of years after its inception.
So what makes Zenraku’s chazuke different? While in Japan chazuke is a homey dish that can be quickly made with leftover rice and just hot water or tea, Zenraku, captained by Chef Yamamoto and Chef Ian, has been concocting a special dashi (soup stock) to go with it. Made out of nine ingredients and created after rigorous recipe tasting this past year, the result is a dashi with extraordinary umami taste—a taste that reminds Chef Yamamoto of his childhood and Chef Ian of the joy of exploring Japan with his family.
“How to eat” guideline from Zenraku is a pretty good place to start. First, have a bite of the rice and the topping without the dashi. Next, pour the dashi to immerse the rice and enjoy everything while it’s still hot. This way, you can really get how much the dashi makes all the difference. No matter your choice of topping—but our favorites are red snapper, tarako, and salmon—the dashi is indeed the center of attraction. It brings out the flavors of the rice and the toppings more and adds another level savoriness.
Not to be missed is Zenraku Dashi Chazuke’s side dishes. In particular, the crunchy Ebi Katsu and the red Hiyashi Tomato. The latter serves up the most refreshing slices of tomato, marinated in what must be some sort of magical pixie dust, as it gives off a beautiful balance of sweetness with a touch of acidity. Ladies will surely dig this one.
We believe that Zenraku Dashi Chazuke can have a place in the dining repertoire of Jakarta food enthusiasts. The ingredients are fresh, the flavor hits all the right places, and that umami dashi is indeed something special. Come to Zenraku Dashi Chazuke Grand Indonesia and proof it yourself.