Unique coffee flavors around Jakarta
Ever since some enterprising genius came up with the idea to mix gula aren, or palm sugar, into a cup of coffee, Indonesia’s coffee boom has been going on unimpeded. Es kopi susu has pretty much become the de facto drink of Indonesian millennials.
Of course, this boom also has the unintended effect of making Indonesia’s coffee landscape look a bit generic. Luckily, we can now rely on these unique coffee flavors from roasteries around Jakarta to bring some fun back into our caffeine routines.
1. The Bubble Gum – cold brew with a bubblegum aftertaste from Pigeonhole Coffee
Cold brew coffee mixed with sugarcane and a touch of lime with a bubblegum aftertaste
Image credit: Pigeonhole
Proving that even specialty coffee roasters can be fun, Pigeonhole Coffee recently revealed their latest drink creation, The Bubble Gum. This cold brew has a unique bubblegum aftertaste thanks to the mixture of sugarcane in the coffee.
It’s not overly sweet and since the bubblegum flavor kicks in at the end, it doesn’t overwhelm the coffee. Interestingly, the roastery also adds a touch of fresh lime to give the coffee a slight zesty kick.
If you’re feeling nostalgic for the Lotte bubblegum you used to stick under your school chair, The Bubble Gum is available in 500ml bottles for Rp. 55,000 (~USD3.74) at Tokopedia.
2. Iced Pei Pa Koa Latte – coffee and traditional cough syrup combo from Yatta Coffee
Iced latte topped off with traditional cough syrup Nin Jiom Pei Pa Koa
Image credit: @yattacoffee
Coffees that perk you up are dime-a-dozen but we’re willing to bet you haven’t heard of a coffee that could relieve coughs. That might be the idea running through Iced Pei Pa Koa Latte (Rp. 25,000, ~USD1.70) from Pluit-based Yatta Coffee.
Consisting of latte mixed with the herbal cough remedy Pei Pa Koa, otherwise known as Obat Batuk Ibu dan Anak or literally “cough medicine for mother and child”, this coffee has a pretty strong flavor profile.
The Pei Pa Koa Latte can also be ordered hot but we feel that the refreshing menthol from the cough syrup works better when iced. If you’re in the neighborhood, this unique gem of a coffee can be ordered through Grab.
3. Iced Godzilla Latte – textured coffee mixed with charcoal from Kopi Konnichiwa
Iced latte with brown sugar and charcoal powder
Image credit: Kopi Konnichiwa
The word charcoal might bring to mind the idea of unsightly black soot but not with Kopi Konnichiwa. This new-ish coffee chain lit up social media when they opened in late 2019 with their uniquely colored drinks, such as the Iced Godzilla Latte (Rp. 23,000, ~USD1.57).
The streaks of jet black come from the charcoal powder which also adds a unique texture to the coffee. This charcoal coffee is a far cry from Jogja’s famed smoky Kopi Joss though, as this drink has a very subtle taste.
It’s available for order through Grab or Gojek but Kopi Konnichiwa is also serving 1-liter bottles through direct message orders. Check out their contact information and list of outlets on their Instagram page.
4. Iced Coffee with Cream Cheese – sweet and savoury coffee from Kopi Kulo
Iced latte with palm sugar topped off with cream cheese
Image credit: @kedaikopikulo
Just as how boba eventually found their way into every food, it was only a matter of time until the cheese tea trend followed suit. Enter Kedai Kopi Kulo with their Es Kopi Keju (Rp. 28,000, ~USD1.89), or literally, iced coffee with cream cheese.
Unlike typical es kopi susu, this drink is best consumed straight from the cup just like cheese tea as the cheese foam is slathered on top of the coffee. The cheese is more creamy than thick and makes for an interesting flavor combination with the sweetened coffee.
This sweet and savoury coffee is available for order through Grab and Gojek. Kulo is one of the bigger coffee chains in Indonesia and for a list of their outlets, check here.
5. Stumpy Zest – refreshing cold brew mixed with lemon zest from Stumpy Coffee
Cold brew latte with added lemon juice and zest
Image credit: @jktfoodbang
If iced coffee just isn’t refreshing enough for you, Stumpy Zest (Rp. 19,000, ~USD1.28) from Stumpy Coffee might just have that extra kick you need. Consisting of cold brew latte mixed with lemon juice and topped off with lemon zest, it actually works well as a caffeinated summer drink.
As the coffee shop is located a few steps away from the Sudirman Station, this drink is perfect if you’re looking for a little pick-me-up after getting crushed like a sardine in Jakarta’s commuter trains.
For workers in the area, this refreshing coffee is available for order through Grab or Gojek or in 1-liter bottles through direct message order for Rp. 95,000 (~USD6.43). Check out their Instagram page for more info.
6. Kopi Rose – fragrant coffee and rose mix from Kopi Tuya
Iced latte mixed with rose syrup and topped off with edible rose petals
Image credit: @kopituya
One of the more eclectic entries in Indonesia’s coffee boom, Kopi Tuya’s colorful facade and pink flamingo are impossible to miss. This explosion of color trickles down to the menu as well, as can be seen from the chain’s Kopi Rose (Rp. 24,000, ~USD1.62).
Mixing latte with rose syrup topped off with edible rose petals, the coffee has a flowery aroma and a unique, pinkish hue. It’s just slightly sweeter than the typical es kopi susu and is ideal if you prefer your coffee on the lighter side.
This chic coffee is available for order through Grab or Gojek. Kopi Tuya’s presence isn’t as big yet as some of the bigger players like Kulo – you can check out their list of outlets here.
7. Kopi Buco – coffee with butterscotch syrup from Kopi Yor
Iced latte mixed with butterscotch syrup
Image credit: @jktfoodlens
From their eye-catching banana milk coffee, it does seem that Kopi Yor has a thing about experimenting with coffee. Their latest concoction is the Kopi Buco (Rp. 22,000, ~USD1.49), iced latte mixed with butterscotch syrup.
The butterscotch acts as a sweetener like gula aren, or palm sugar, but the difference is in the flavor profile. This butterscotch coffee has a candy-like sweetness that would definitely remind you of those classic Alpenliebe candies, while still maintaining the characteristic coffee.
If you’re interested, Kopi Yor’s latest invention is available for online order through Grab or Gojek and in 1-liter bottles for Rp. 85,000 (~USD5.77). For a list of their outlets across Indonesia, check here.
8. Es Kopi Bang – unholy union of coffee and soy sauce from Ali Kopi
Iced latte mixed with soy sauce
Image credit: @alikopiroastery
As with Kopi Yor, Ali Kopi is another coffee chain that likes to mess around with coffee, such as with their non-alcoholic Baileys coffee. That one however is nowhere near as hair-raising as Es Kopi Bang (Rp. 22,000 ~USD1.49), an absurd mix of iced latte and sweet soy sauce.
Before you cry abomination, do note that one of the main ingredients of sweet soy sauce is palm sugar. There’s a hint of saltiness in this drink, but it’s not as dominant as you’d might expect and more along the lines of salted caramel.
If you’re keen on trying this concoction that features local soy sauce brand Kecap Bango, the coffee is available for order through Grab and Gojek and in 350 ml bottles for Rp. 33,000 (~USD2.25) each. You can check out Ali Kopi’s list of outlets on their Instagram page.
Unique coffee flavors worth trying out in Jakarta
Indonesians are nothing if not creative with their food and drinks. If you want to go the distance, pair up these unique coffee flavors with fancy sandwiches to send your taste buds on an express trip to heaven.
For more delicacies to try out at home, check these out: