Founded by Mrs. Fani, Mr. Johan and two other silent founders, Garam Kitchen first opened its door to the public on 25th January 2019. Located at 4/51 Buckley St, Noble Park, Garam Kitchen satisfies the nostalgic and homely craving of local residents by wafting the fragrant scent of Padang cuisine in the air. As you pass by the transparent windows of the store, you will see steam forming on the metal tray inside the store. Coming inside, you can already smell the spiciness in the air. Once you do, you find that you simply cannot help yourself from craving a mouthful of the delicious selection of culinary delight laid bare before you. You learn that the culinary experience is so much more than mere taste – it is also about the ambiance of the store and the scent of the food itself. You may have acknowledged the former one as being critical, but now you find that the latter is just as – if not more – important.
The good news is that you will be able to point and choose different selections of food to complement your rice from the metal tray. As you take the first bite, you find that the explosion of flavour makes the whole culinary experience even more memorable. The saltiness of the curry, the crunchiness of the chicken and the juiciness of the vegetables all make for a mouthwatering combination that you never thought possible. Of course, if you are new to Padang food, you can always take it easy and go for a selection of recommended food for starters. You can always go easy with nasi goreng before slowly trying out the kari kikil, sate lontong and bakso sapi. In case you are wondering, they are also 100% certified Halal so you do not have to worry about dietary restriction when you visit and eat.
Aside from the rich menu and affordable price, Garam Kitchen receives another plus point for being located close to the park. Right in front of the restaurant is a slide for your children to play around with. Mrs. Fani said that the slide is especially popular for families coming over to eat during the weekend. They will usually bring their kids along and take their time in enjoying the food and the view of the place whilst their children play by the slide. Being the only restaurant serving Padang cuisine in the Noble Park area, it seems inevitable that their restaurant eventually come to attract many Padang food lovers residing around the Noble Park suburb.
If you are new to the Indonesian Padang cuisine, you can also talk about your preferred palate to Mrs. Fani. Garam Kitchen aims to cater to each of its customers’ individual taste so you can always tell her more on how you would like your food be made. She will be more than happy to customize your order to ensure your satisfaction. Her friendliness and willingness to share with every customer makes the whole culinary experience even better as you get to learn more about Padang food from the very experts who make them. You are there as a learner and a student, not just a customer.
When asked if there was ever any concern about her recipe being copied by other people upon sharing, she smiled and said that she believed in helping others find their passion first and foremost. While other restaurants might guide their recipe with intense fervour, she took joy in helping others learn what they love – even if what they love included cooking her own menu. Her humbleness is admirable indeed.
Garam Kitchen is open 7 days a week from 11:30 A.M. in the morning to 9:00 P.M. in the evening. So if you ever feel like a craving for some evening homemade food and you do not know where to go, you should consider adding Garam Kitchen into your list.
Text: Edward Tanoto
Photo: Devina Krismarina