03 March 2012

Pondok Buyung Indonesian Restaurant - Kensington

We couldn't pick a single favourite restaurant in Sydney, but Pondok Buyung would be in our top three list, if we had one. Man we love this joint.


Pondok Buyung has moved down the road since our last visit. The new joint still has the great no-frills Indo-resto vibe we love so much, though nothing could quite live up to the low-rent splendour of the old Pondok Buyung.

Just like in Indonesia, dishes are pre-prepared and ready to go. Pick three for $9-$10 on rice. The lovely Indo mamas will ask if you would like some curry sauce over the top, only a fool would say no.

Help yourself to traditional Indonesian Tea (gratis) and Pepsi-Max (non-gratis).

Crispy, salty dried fish, squid in a mild curry and stir fried tempeh with green and red chili.

Jackfruit curry, chicken rendang and water spinach. We splashed out another $2 for an extra choice of ika bilis, dried anchovies and peanuts, a favourite of ours. The ayam rendang was particuarly good, we love they dry Sumatran style where the sauce is reduced down to a thick paste. The rendang was only surpassed by the jackfruit which was a mind-blower.

We hope the dapper gentleman we accidentally photographed above found the party he was looking for.


In 2012 a few of our very favourite restaurants closed so our 2013 new year's resolution is to spend as much time revisiting favourite places as we do trying new ones. Pondok Buyung is first on the menu.

Another raid from the bainmarie of love. A piece of fish, stir-fried tempeh and a tangy, tamarind-y side soup that we've had in a number of Indonesian joints.

The lovely big lump of spinach on the left has a flavour that transports us back to Indonesia. We try green beans and sweet potato and chicken rendang. Mr Shawn declares Pondok Buyung his favourite restaurant in Sydney.

The deserts are only $2 and delicious. Underneath is like a pandan flavoured crumpet, sweet and stodgey. On top is pandan flavoured pancake filled with some kind of palm sugar and coconut. Highly, highly recommended.

Pondok Buyung Indonesian Padang Restaurant is at 140 Anzac Parade, Kensington, almost opposite Peters of Kensington.

See our post on the old Pondok Buyung here. For more Nasi Padang goodness we also dig Warung Ita at Lakemba.

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Love this ye olde Shelley's Drinks signage next door.

The old 'Grotto' the Grotta Capri is up for lease down the road...


  1. Surely your snap of the dapper gentleman was intentional, for the purpose of your admiring readers? Another rec for you if you're in Campsie area - Ginseng & Chicken, 96 Beamish Street (thankfully far from the madding crowd in the main stretch of Beamish St - head instead towards Brighton Avenue). The gratis coffee almost makes up for the mere duo of side dishes. I feel healthier just thinking about the cleansing chicken broth...

  2. Jackfruit curry sounds interesting, keen to try it. Love ika bilis. Extra ika bilis, dried anchovies and peanuts for me! Great to see authentic Indonesian food in Sydney.

  3. The new digs are looking a little better. Some parts of Kenso are definitely stuck in a time warp

    1. We love the time warp factor. We're stuck in it too.

  4. Re. "Love this ye olde Shelley's Drinks signage next door."

    Hey Dude, I appreciate the photo of the old sign. The photo inspired (triggered) me to buy a carbon fibre monopod for my E-P3 on eBay today so that I can elevate my camera into a better position for similar photos. I've seen pro-photographers do some clever photography using the reach of a monopod.

    Imagine the power of a camera on the end of a monopod next time you go food blogging. You could place the camera well behind the front counter and take photos where all the action is or hang the camera over a fellow diners shoulder and photo what they are chowing down on.

  5. My wife and I love this place too, especially in winter. Those curries surely warm you up nicely. If you are up to it, try their lamb brain curry.

    1. Ooh the lamb brain curry sounds great. They do a good brain curry at Banoful in Rockdale too.

  6. a tangy, tamarind-y side soup is sayur asam.

    The deserts are called dadar gulung (top) and bika ambon.


Thanks for your comment joy - please keep your musings happy - if you want to complain about a restaurant please do it on a restaurant review site (or your own blog) - we're all about celebrating cultural diversity and the great eats that come along with it :-)

Our ethics: We pay for all our own meals and travel (though sometimes Mum shouts us).