Tuesday, 19 October 2010

Freeflow Jakarta

All you can eat and all the wine you can drink for 198,000 rupiah. Now doesn't that sound too good to be true. Well it almost is.
Quiet kind of week really with the blog countdown clock reducing every second but to watch it is driving me nuts. Tomorrow leaves me with less than 60 days to I get to feel the cold and be in the UK so that has to be a good thing.
The usual otherwise, weather is unpredictable and the traffic is just getting worse. I dont know whether it is because I keep reading about how bad it is getting or there is actually more on the road. The holes are certainly getting bigger thats for sure. The roads around the apartments have been dug up and refilled, the rain has since washed the holes refilled with stones empty and bigger. This makes for a more challenging ride home in the dark but so far so good. I am exceptionally careful getting home and I could draw a map of where all the holes are currently. Saying all that though there is no sign of anything being done about it, with the exception of the locals filling the holes in broken ceramic and stone, sticks, tyres and other assorted debris.

I need to go book shopping again as I seem to run out of books as I am on my last book. I am reading Michael Crichton's 'The Lost world' which is a great read. I have also read recently 3 or 4 Stephen King books again, a couple of John Grisham novels and a  great book about Krakatoa and the history of the eruption which was very impressive, so I am out of books and so I will have to hit the second hand book stores and get some more in.

So back to all you can eat and drink. Freeflow is a sort of a new word for me and the concept is very appealing being a westerner who enjoys drinking alcohol.
All you need to do is find out where these events are held, book a table and then drink all you can. Pay and leave.
I went to the Hotel Nikko opposite Grand Indonesia. Hotel Nikko is apparently a 5 star place of luxury but sadly as with most hotels in this city, it is too big, too full of empty space, graced by the super rich mainly and this one was full of Chinese or Korean tourists and wedding or birthday parties.
I was with a birthday party, although this was a pure western affair with the exception of a few wives and girlfriends. Inside the Nikko is a restaurant called the Olive and to enter it you have to go through a small corridor, actually it like the entrance to the toilets. However once inside it was a small restaurant dining area. We were kept in a corner room but that was ok.
The range of food was staggering as there was so much choice. Indonesia food, Italian, Japanese, A steak and seafood grill, salad bar and lots of cake and ice cream and then the breads. I can eat everything but I do miss good bread as Sari Roti, Bread Talk and Carrefour whilst selling decent bread do not really have good bread. This bread was great. Sticks, rolls, buns, all shapes and sizes. I think I ate more bread than anything else. The quality of the food also was very good and plentiful. I guess after my fifth plate I was full and had tried everything.
Then there was the free wine. I have missed drinking wine here mainly as it is too expensive and hard to find good wine. So being in a 'posh' hotel there was I thinking that it would be good wine. And for those that know wine you will appreciate it when I say that Lambrusco Rosso is not my favourite choice of Italian wine, if in fact it is wine not sparkling ribena. (Ribena is a blackcurrant fruit drink famous in England). Served cold as it is red wine (red wine like Indonesian food should be served at room temperature) not cold.
A bottle of this stuff in Tescos in England costs £2.08 where as a decent bottle of red costs at least double that (don't forget wine is very cheap in England). I have a suspicion that a glass of that stuff would cost 80,000 idr here. Besides the sheer cheapness and poor quality of screw bottle wine the waiter, clearly alarmed that 6 people were drinking the way through the profits disappeared and reappeared when no one was looking. So whilst it was freeflow, it was more drip feed than a steady stream but then we should have that .
So rather full and still sober (shame) we waddled out of the restaurant and went our separate ways.....

And finally dont forget....

When the wine is in, the wit is out.  ~Proverb

I feel sorry for people who don't drink.  When they wake up in the morning, that's as good as they're going to feel all day.  ~Frank Sinatra



A woman drove me to drink and I never even had the courtesy to thank her.  ~W.C. Fields


Beer is the cause and solution to all of life's problems.  ~Homer Simpson


and this one is one of my favourites......


Winston Churchill to Lady Astor

"Sir, you're drunk!" "Yes, Madam, I am. But in the morning, I will be sober and you will still be ugly."
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