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Bluegrass Jakarta: Feasting Like A Viking God

Published 06 February 2012   

Text by Erza S.T.
Photos by Ramadhan

Back when I was a kid, going to a steak restaurant was considered a luxury and it was a family ritual that we did once a month. In the 80s, steak restaurants such as Black Angus, Restoran Steak Art & Curio and Ponderosa were the places to go. With the passing of time, the steak-eating habit in Jakarta has gotten stronger and we have started to see chains such as Tony Roma’s and Lawry’s Prime Rib come on the scene, and five-star hotels such as Park Lane and The Regent (now The Four Seasons) have started to adopt this concept by adding Stix and The Regent Steak House to Jakarta’s culinary landscape.

Perhaps these days going to a steak restaurant is not as prestigious as it was back in the 80s, but this doesn’t mean we have lost interest. Aside from some of the big names above that still survive and prosper, Jakarta also has newcomers that are more upmarket in style and concept. At the moment, I am craving for some good meat.

The place I am craving is called Bluegrass, a steak restaurant that prefers to be classified as an American bar and grill. Opened at the end of October last year, the Bluegrass concept seems to work well with its target market and this has made them one of the most popular hangout spots in Jakarta.

modern interior creates just the right ambience for an upmarket USA styled bar and grill.

To my observation, there are a few elements that make Bluegrass really work. A nice ambience, great meat and a gorgeous bar to mix and mingle. As a stand-alone restaurant, Bluegrass has a modern Western concept using greyish mountain stone as its feature. With its large dimensions, it is no surprise that this restaurant claims to have the longest bar in town. Stretching for over 40 metres, it has immediately been accepted by the slick yuppies that occupy it during happy hours every day.

But I ain’t here for the cocktails! I am here for the steak. A dilemma steps in to my mind and makes it hard to decide between the 1kg lean bone rib eye named Big Daddy or the Bluegrass Baby Back Ribs. Ah, what do you know… life is too short to be bothered on this or that, so why not have both?

“This fantastic meat feast really made me and my friends feel like we were at a Norse God’s victory battle feast in Valhalla.”

This bold ‘blonde’ decision was very satisfying indeed, but then came the issue of how to finish them. The Big Daddy was really BIG! I think it was actually enough to be shared among at least four meat lovers. So I called for back up. I have to say, Big Daddy was really good. It was juicy and perfectly cooked. Dipped into the accompanying au jus sauce it tasted simply divine. It was so very worth paying Rps. 500,000 (US$55) for this 1kg of prime meat.

Since I had additional back up coming, eating the baby back ribs was not really an issue anymore. With options of BBQ or original dipping sauce, they were so tender and filled with juicy sweetness. It was really an excellent choice for anyone who enjoys meat. They have a halal version called Texas Beef Ribs that are equally as scrumptious. This fantastic meat feast really made me and my friends feel like we were at a Norse God’s victory battle feast in Valhalla. Afterwards, we rested while enjoying local Balinese Stark wheat beer to calm our happy tummies.

Slowly the bar and outside patio were filling with the beautiful people and we saw more beautiful looking dishes like prawns, chicken wings, salmon and yummy desserts passing by our table. But we were spent. Oh no worries… there is always next time and after this feast, next time won’t be too far away.

Bluegreass Bar and Grill
Kompleks Rasuna Epicentrum
Jl. H.R. Rasuna Said
Jakarta Selatan