You know those moments when you simply had a lovely time? My time at Mamma Rosy was such that I thought it was worth sharing.
Earlier that day, 10 casually said he’s bringing me to dinner that night, just for the sake of it, without telling me where he’ll be taking me. It’s one of those surprises we sometimes like to give each other for no clear reason. Like the last surprise I gave him.
I didn’t have a name in mind until we’ve reached the Kemang area in south Jakarta, where practically all the city’s top-notch restaurants reside. And then all of a sudden, a name struck me like a thunder: “Is it Mamma Rosy?”
And 10 laughed and finally put his guards down on the whole secrecy. He said he’d heard the place has good pasta and pizza. If you’ve been following my restaurant bites for a while now, you know we’re a carb-loving bunch.
Truthfully, before that night, I’ve already heard the good word spreading about this homemade Italian eatery, a replica of the original joint in the charming Italian north-western region, Liguria. A friend had the privilege to be one of the first to taste when the family-ran restaurant first opened in Jakarta earlier this year. She said not only are the dishes sumptuous, but staff were really attentive. Seems like everything she said was true.
This is the kind of place you’d take your family members to dine together and pour wine bottles with – warm, benign, and unpretentious. There was a little courtyard a few feet from the entrance that night as well, adding a touch of romanticism that probably brought back memories of the colorful sights and scenes of Liguria to Mamma Rosy herself. The rest of the staff were welcoming, attentive to all guests, and establishes a homey feel so you’d simmer down. Not that all 200-person seats were filled that night, but all three sections were occupied – there were small and large families seating on the terrace, the VIP room, and the rooftop.
So 10 went to Italy last April. Speaking from his numerous gastronomical indulgences on the world’s most-loved dishes, he recommended us having the Caprese Salad for our antipasto that night, which was tagged at IDR 65,000. To tell you the truth, I never really like the taste of raw tomatoes. But, as you know, I always end up changing my mind when cheese is involved. On top of that, there was an ultra-thick dash of pesto sauce too (looove the basil). Since namesake’s dishes are prepared by Mamma Rosy herself, you can bet these are just the way they are served back in Italy, although perhaps portion size was compromised for us tiny Indonesians.
10 selected the fresh Ravioli with pesto from the pasta a la carte menu (he’s nuts about pesto as well). Just in case you’re wondering, they do have more sauces in the house to dress your pasta of choice, namely the Pomodoro sauce, the Ragu, Arrabbiata, Vongole, Funghi, A.O.P., and the Burro&Salvia. It’s us who’s bonkers about pesto.
I love that it doesn’t taste too salty as the pesto sauces normally served in the average Italian eatery in Jakarta. Love the sensitizing herbs and all that fluffiness from the grated Parmesan as well, although personally I’d add more creaminess to the overall texture (then again it’s just personal taste).
I went for Mamma Rosy’s house favorite Lasagna Pesto (yeah I guess we’ll never get bored with pesto), which was offered at IDR 89,000. Also labelled as a vegetarian choice, the stacked pieces of heaven would last any hungry belly all night long. It was as creamy and cheesy as the way any comfort-food lover would imagine it to be – only that for me, the more bites of the viscous pesto I took, the saltier they taste in the mouth. But drizzling more olive oil all over it does help to even out all that brininess. Otherwise, the thick, milky and starchy consistency has made this meatless lasagna inimitable.
As if we Lilliputians haven’t had enough, we ordered some more Pesce Persico Alla Mediterranea, which turned out surprisingly huge but worth every rupiah (IDR 149,000). The sizable dory was more than enough to feed two starving adults, let alone two 90%-full ones. There was also a side dish to complement every one of Mamma Rosy’s meat and fish dishes – a selection of potato wedges, a salad, and a vegetable sauté. We ended up with the ruffled spinach sauté, a perfect match to taste with the delicate flesh of the ultra-herby, ultra-garlicky, and uber-fresh fish. Despite our bloated bellies, we downed the whole plate off by the end of the night, enjoying the zesty flesh to the very last bite.
Unfortunately we were too full to try Mamma Rosy’s rendition of the tiramisu, though we were looking forward to try it out. And nope, we didn’t think of ordering a takeout at that time because we’re practically stuffed. Happy, yes, but stuffed. Anywho, do let me know if you happen to stop by the homey osteria and try the classic dessert. I bet it’s divine.
S-Th 10:00am – 11:00pm
F -Sa 10:00am – 12:00pm