Communing in Komunal 88

by Candy Anthrasal
4th June 2015
The offbeat Komunal 88 that coins the term café market in Jakarta’s grounds offers no-fuss good food and interactive social space to relish in.

In rural France people gather in large communal tables to share thoughts, food and drinks. This practice was introduced back in the early 16th century as a tradition in the suburb inns where it hailed as a social equaliser among the common people – a setting where they formed a tight union through spoken words. Not to be forgotten, people also love having good food served on the table which further brings out the essence of togetherness.

Learning from the said tradition, Komunal 88 started with a humble concept of a café market. One doesn’t need the luxury of fancy food because good food alone is already fulfilling. Simple yet enjoyable, the maxim that sticks to it. Paul Prudhomme once said, “You don’t need a silver fork to eat good food.” Indeed, Komunal 88 conforms to that view. Though the place adapts the setting of a French tradition, it chooses to savour uncomplicated Italian food that easily brings delight to anyone through the hands of  Chef Mirko, a native Tuscan, who is in charge behind the transparent kitchen view of Komunal 88.

Komunal 88 takes pride in its virtuous dishes by prioritising on fresh ingredients from organic vegetables to seasonal seafood. It regularly imports ingredients anywhere from Lombok to Japan, willing to go the extra mile when it comes to serving good food of the highest quality. This explained the ever-changing extended menu specialities each week.

Following the third wave coffee shop in Jakarta, Komunal 88 also serves coffee from fine grade beans – an essential booster to anyone’s morning blues. If coffee is not your thing, Betjeman & Barton’s tea selections will charm you with its luxurious complexity traits. Add to that Komunal’s daily baked cakes, pastries and pies that would surely make a good company for your lonely coffee or tea.

The café market also supports local labels on the rack such as cold brew coffee from Ray’s Bottle of Joe, Naked hearty snackbar, Stark Beer and Komunal’s renowned bottled distilled water as well as sparkling water. Being put together, the whole thing shared similar passion to nourish people with goodness.

Interesting aspect to note is that in Komunal 88, paper cups, paper placemats or paper napkins are completely undetected. They are promoting a cause to sustain the environment, hence going for environmental friendly objects such as takeaway ceramic tumblers and reusable napkins. And if you like it you may as well purchase it, since Komunal 88 is an all-purpose market after all.

With a lot going on inside, Komunal 88 seems able to manage the constant full house scene effortlessly. The chic grayscale industrial set up emits a casual feel around the place. While their food presentation is a concept commonly used in eateries these days, the scope of technicolour ingredients, genuine baked goods and many product choices on sight are indeed striking they wouldn’t need much effort to captivate passing customers.

All in all, Komunal 88 is a perfect cosy shelter that houses regular comings and goings. And these regulars know for sure that they’re not only coming back for the place’s good food, but also such cordial community the place provides.