One special place for eating in Yogyakarta that I visit (almost) everyday is Warung Handayani. Warung is Indonesian for small-medium food stall. Among locals Warung Handayani is more famous under the nickname “Brongkos Alkid“. It is probably because customers love the Nasi (rice) Brongkos menu. While the term Alkid itself refers to Alun-Alun Kidul or South town square in Yogyakarta Royal Palace area, the Warung Handayani is located on the edge of the South town square.
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Are you the kind of person that “would prefer eat where locals eat“? Oh yes please, I want traditional Javanese food or authentic Jogjakarta food (you quickly add your statement). Do give this Warung a chance. It is very easy to find, you can simply stop during your walk on the way to the Royal Palace. It opens from 7 am until 4 pm. I often see foreigners walk straight passed the warung meanwhile we, locals, are busy munching the tastiness that Warung Handayani provides.
This Warung was established in 1969, so it is 45 years old now. The owner are always consistent with the menu and the flavor is always tasty. They keep the simple menu inherited from their parents. I’ll share some of my favourite dishes from Warung Handayani.
Nasi Brongkos Koyor
They provide two types of Nasi Brongkos, which are Nasi Brongkos Telur (egg) and Nasi Brongkos Koyor (beef). Nasi Brongkos telur is like a rice with soup that contains tolo beans (red beans, perhaps), tofu, hard-boiled egg and crackers. I prefer the other one, which is Nasi Brongkos Koyor (beef). Though the beef comes with quite a lot of fat, which you might not like (locals people mostly don’t mind a bit of beef fat in their soup). The taste of Brongkos Koyor is a mix of savory, salty, sweet and a tiny tiny bit spicy. If you would like it to be more spicy, you can squash the chillies that you can find inside your Brongkos. If you would like to try it, ask if they can provide Nasi Brongkos Koyor without fat (lemak) or you can simply ignore the fat and not eat it. Easy right?
Nasi Soto Ayam
There are a lot of different kinds of Soto in Indonesia. This Nasi Soto Ayam in Warung Handayani is a clear chicken soup that contains beans sprouts, chicken, small amounts of celery, rice noddles and broth. The soup comes with rice, a potato ball and crackers. Don’t forget to add a squeeze of lime and sweet soya souce. Tasty yummy!
This is the right menu if you are a vegetarian. Rice served with boiled vegetables, peanut sauce, tempe and crackers. The uniqueness of Nasi Pecel in this warung is its peanut sauce which a bit rough. You can tell that they process their food manually by hand. They usually provide fried Tempe (Tempe Goreng) to go with it, but I prefer Tempe Bacem (tempe soaked is soy sauce).
If you are a little scared/reluctant to try the food, go for the Es Campur. This fantastic multi-colored drink contains coconut flesh, tape (fermented cassava), syrup, water, ice and coconut milk. I’ve been trying a lot of Es Campur anywhere in Indonesia, but this one in Warung Handayani is one of the best. Drinking es campur during the day when the sun shines so bright in Yogyakarta is kind of heaven on Earth for me.
Gading Street No. 2
South side of South town square, Royal Palace (Keraton) Yogyakarta
Do let me know your thoughts when you finally decide to give this Warung a chance.
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