German Eats Get Delicate Tweaks in Jakarta

For most people, the idea of German food conjures up images of oversized portions of meat, mountains of mashed potatoes and pale, pickled vegetables. And there’s nothing wrong with that. But after eight years of serving up the old favorites in a smoky pub atmosphere, Die Stube in Kemang has decided to take things in a different direction with a new look, new menu and a new take on German cuisine.

The classics are all still there — gigantic schnitzels, potatoes fried in lard and sausages bursting at the skins — but chef Ralf Schmidt has added lighter items to the menu, introducing lean cuts of meat, delicate poached eggs and paper-thin crepes.

Owner Patrick
Widjaja says the menu change marks Die Stube’s transition from pub to restaurant. “We used to be a small pub with German food,” he says. “But now we’re like a German restaurant with a pub on the side.” 

The pub area keeps the punters happy, with German beer on tap and football matches screened on weekends, while the newly opened restaurant area is smoke-free and family-friendly. It has already become a popular brunch spot for mothers to get together after dropping off their kids at the nearby international schools.