Multicultural Eats: Where to find the best Indonesian food in Canberra

Sophia Brady 22 January 2021 15
Hyatt Hotel Canberra Nasi Goreng

The Hyatt Hotel Canberra serves a delicious and authentic Nasi Goreng. Photos: Erna Glassford.

The only international travel I am doing this year is with my tastebuds and this week they are journeying to the sprawling island nation of Indonesia.

My expert guide is Indonesian-born avid traveller and photographer Erna Glassford. Her love of Indonesian food is matched only by her love of discovering and sharing the best the Canberra region has to offer on her popular Instagram page Simply Cheecky.

Simply Cheecky

Erna Glassford loves sharing the best the Canberra region has to offer on her popular Instagram page Simply Cheecky.

“What I love about Indonesian food is it is rich in variety and taste. Every meal is flavourful and exciting to eat!” said Erna.

“Known for its unique combinations of various kinds of spices and influences from Arab, Indian, Portuguese, Spanish, Dutch and Chinese cuisines, Indonesian food is not always pretty or Instagrammable, but it’s always tasty and every meal is accompanied by rice and chilli sambal.”

According to Erna, the barometer for a good Indonesian eatery is their nasi goreng. When done right, the humble fried rice dish delivers her the sweet caramel flavours of home. After living in Canberra for 11 years, she has found all the best spots to satisfy her cravings for authentic Indonesian food.

Hyatt Hotel Canberra

Past the beautiful tea lounge at the Promenade Café, the lunch menu features a deluxe nasi goreng with jasmine rice, prawns, chicken satay sticks, fried egg and chilli sambal which Erna says tastes just like it does in Indonesia.

“The nasi goreng at the Hyatt tastes exactly like real nasi goreng that you normally find at the best street vendors in Jakarta. I can taste the chilli, dried shrimp paste, kecap manis (sweet soy sauce), just like in Indonesia.”

Hyatt Hotel Canberra is located at 120 Commonwealth Avenue, Canberra and is open 7 days a week.

Mamma’s Takeaway Kitchen

Among the hamburgers, sandwiches, gyros and roasts available at Mamma’s Takeaway Kitchen in Mitchell is a selection of Indonesian food. But you will not find it on their menu, you have to ask for the Indonesian specials of the day or keep an eye on their Facebook page.

“I highly recommended their mie goreng (fried noodle). It is so delicious, and the portion is quite generous but just be aware it is popular and normally sold out before lunch.”

Mie Goreng from Mamma’s Takeaway Kitchen

The Mie Goreng from Mamma’s Takeaway Kitchen in Mitchell.

Mamma’s Takeaway Kitchen is located at 55 Heffernan St, Mitchell and is open Monday to Saturday from 7:30 am to 2:30 pm.

Asian Provisions

Open since 1977, Asian Provisions in Phillip is the oldest Asian supermarket in Canberra. Specialising in Indonesian, Malaysian, Singaporean and south-east Asian grocery products, they also have a range of takeaway food.

“While Asian Provisions itself is a supermarket, it quite often sells takeaway Indonesian food from Indonesian home catering companies. You can find almost every Indonesian food you can think of here,” said Erna.

The takeaway options change daily, so pop in to see what is available or stay up to date via their Facebook page.

Asian Provisions is located at 54 Colbee Court, Phillip and is open 7 days a week.

Wita Makes

A home bakery offering nostalgic treats from Indonesia made by Canberra mum and illustrator Wita Puspita is Erna’s go-to for Indonesian snacks and bread.

“I highly recommend Wita’s risoles. Indonesian risoles are like spring rolls in terms of concept, but it uses crepes as the wrapper. The filling is normally chicken, vegetable and spices. The wrapper is then dipped into panko bread crumb and deep-fried. I hold no responsibility if you get addicted!”

Risoles from Wita

Risoles from Wita Makes are highly addictive.

Follow Wita Makes on Facebook to see what’s on her weekly menu.


What's Your Opinion?


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15 Responses to Multicultural Eats: Where to find the best Indonesian food in Canberra
Sara Rijaluddin Sara Rijaluddin 1:13 am 22 Jan 21

KOPIKU_caffe has really good fried rice!!!

Bridget Hogan Bridget Hogan 9:00 pm 21 Jan 21

Idk what I was expecting but the Hyatt hotel wasn’t it Eric Powell

google_user google_user 3:35 pm 21 Jan 21

This list is a poor selection of Indonesian restaurants. The list includes 5 star hotel, an Asian shop and a caterer working from home.

Try the Indo Cafe for lunch. It has been serving good authentic Indonesian lunches for over 30 years from the same shop off London Circuit. See http://www.indocafe.com.au

Also try Kita at the Narrabundah Shops. See http://www.kitakafe.com.au

    Fairdinkum Fairdinkum 8:01 am 22 Jan 21

    did try nasi goreng from Indo Cafe and also Kita. Unfortunately, the taste is mediocre

David Judge David Judge 3:30 pm 21 Jan 21

You forgot Rasa Sayang in Dickson. Great food- great people.

Snny Singh Snny Singh 8:20 am 21 Jan 21

INDO Cafe on London circuit

    Sukh Raj Singh Cheema Sukh Raj Singh Cheema 4:34 pm 21 Jan 21

    Snny Singh how about

    The one on Main Street,

    Where we had cup of tea?

LEE LEE LEE LEE 7:02 am 21 Jan 21

Poor example of Indonesian food outlets .We all know where the Hyatt and Mammas T/A are but where does Wita Makes operate from.
PS I don’t do Face /inst/Twitter.

Darin Mulcaster Darin Mulcaster 9:03 pm 20 Jan 21

Go and try @kita at Narrabundah shops

Marc Edwards Marc Edwards 8:39 pm 20 Jan 21

Thanks Erna 👍😎

Julia Nesbitt Julia Nesbitt 8:15 pm 20 Jan 21

I just can't understand why there is such a lack of Indonesian restaurants. We all love/adore the food. Its crazy.

    Wita Puspita Wita Puspita 9:51 pm 20 Jan 21

    Julia Nesbitt I agree. I guess there is just not enough Indonesians living in Canberra. And most of us came here for academic/diplomatic reasons. There are actually lots of really good Indonesian cooks here in Canberra, we just don't feel like opening a restaurant because it's too much work 😂

    Alita Wibert Alita Wibert 12:34 am 21 Jan 21

    Julia Nesbitt I've never eaten Indonesian. It looks delicious !!! I'm so glad Trump is leaving today.

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