What started off as a Hair Salon that served little snacks of Manado dishes, has now become one of the most popular brand names of traditional Manado food and also for the non-Indonesians, the spiciest and most flavourful food in Indonesia. With chains sprouting up all over Jakarta, Beautika embodies how Indonesians like to enjoy their food. It has to taste like mama's cooking, be spicy, be served promptly, and have a hefty selection of the sweetest desserts. Beautika has got the winning combination according to us.
As you enter this restaurant, you are introduced to a row of food that either looks too delicious for words, and at the same time too scary to taste, as you see kilos of chillies in all of their dishes. Their best selling dish is any thing that is 'pepes' and has at least 3 chillies along side its menu (i.e very spicy) or the equally spicy and gloriously flavourful Ayam Woku, with lime leaves, chillies, palm leaves, basil, turmeric and possibly 12 more different types of herbs and spices, is simply addictive. Another favourite is also the Cakalang Goreng Saus which is hand shredded cakalang fish stir fried in a heavenly chilli concoction which is divine. Another of their fish masterpiece dish would be the the fish soup, Kuah Asam, the clear fish broth is surely the winner with halved fresh red tomatoes, spring onions and of course the lime leaves.
For the veggies selection, you must try the Papaya flower that might be slightly bitter for some but, it goes very well as a side to their very savoury and pungent dishes. Also at Beautika, any dish that has to do with eggplant is cooked delightfully and flavoured to perfection.
For those with an adventurous palate, try the 'Paniki' simply translated, Bat meat! The bats are burnt first to get rid of their hair and then cooked in a rich coconut based broth. The sauce that is smothered in this dish is very similar to Rendang that you will find at Padang restaurants. But the texture of the meat, that’s something new... or rather, an acquired taste.
Nevertheless, desserts are one of the favourite treats at Beautika,and usually it is the take away option. Pudding is the choice when you are at this restaurant, and the favourite one by far is the coconut pudding known in Dutch as Klappertaart. This pudding is painstaking to make but the custard that melts in your mouth is simply worth the effort. After all, with the effort that Beautika has put into making this dish, it is only polite to order it.