I spotted Lestari after a visit at Brainwave Cafe and was curious to see pork on the menu. Pork at an Indonesian restaurant is quite rare – in Bali, it’s easy to find because of the predominantly Hindu culture, but whenever I’m in Jakarta, I generally only find pork in Chinese or Western restaurants.
Lestari is unassuming, much like an Indonesian warung. It’s also completely underrated. A lot of people (myself included) probably list Ayam Goreng 99 as their fave Indo spots, but not many of heard of Lestari (I sure hadn’t).
Order and pay at the counter downstairs, then head up the stairs to find a table. Make sure you specify your level of spiciness when you place your order. I’m a chilli fanatic, so I go for spicy for the Lestari nasi goreng (fried rice) with BBQ pork. It’s a first-rate, generous fried rice with a good amount of smokiness. A fried egg sits proudly on top.
The bakmi ayam (noodles with chicken) is tasty, though I find the noodles a bit thick – they’re almost spaghetti-like. If you like your noodles thick, flat and made of rice (think pad see ew Indo-style), jump on the kwetiaw goreng – it’s glistening and flavoursome, albeit a bit sweet for my taste.
The fried tofu is great, but give the fried tempe a miss – it’s under-seasoned and far better at other Indonesian restaurants in Sydney. They’re a bargain at $2 for two pieces, though.
If you’re on the hunt for a quick 10-buck feed near Central, Lestari’s got you covered. It has definitely joined my list of Indo faves alongside Ayam Goreng 99, Willis Canteen, and Pondok Buyung.
93/732 Harris St, Ultimo, NSW
Sunday to Friday 12 to 8pm