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Nov 24, 2006 07:08 PM

ISO Java Spice...does it exist?

I've searched on Google for an Indonesian restaurant called Java Spice, supposedly in the Venice/Marina del Rey area. It's owned by the poker pro John Juanda. But could find no info on it. Can anyone help? Just looking for where it's at.


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  1. I'm looking for this too...

      1. re: MikeG says it's in Rowland Heights. But the person I heard about it from said John Juanda's restaurant is in the Venice/MDR area.

      2. The search goes on... has anyone tried calling the place in Rowland Heights? Maybe they know...

        7 Replies
        1. re: bulavinaka

          Great suggestion - just called and when I asked if this was the Java Spice owned by John Juanda, the guy who answered said he wasn't there right now but maybe next week, which to me sounds like a "Yes."

          1. re: waterisgood

            Glad you found out, but what a drag... thought we were getting another Indonesian place in the Westside...

            1. re: bulavinaka

              so what other Indonesian restaurants are there on the west side? or anywhere for that matter?

              1. re: Laga Lady

                Here's one
                INDO CAFE
                10428 1/2 NATIONAL BLVD
                LOS ANGELES

                ramayana on westwood, i believe, has closed.

                1. re: Laga Lady

                  Right across the street from Indo Cafe is Simpang Asia, a combo mini grocery store/cafe that carries or makes many food items for those who are a little homesick for some decent "makan." These two being right across the street from each other is a quirk and a godsend for those Westiders who relish flavors from that part of the world.

                  Ramayani on Westwood Blvd north of Santa Monica Blvd used to be the only Indonesian food place in the Westside until the above two opened. Ramayani is operated by a family that is from Indonesia - I'm guessing they're Nonya - and their food tends to be a little Americanized in some ways - maybe a little underseasoned. But it reminds me more of home cooking as my very picky Malaysian-Chinese FIL attested when we took him there - he found it very acceptable. The dining area is a little cramped, and it can feel more like a living room as the family oftentimes lounges or eats at one of the back tables while watching the tube. I really enjoy their beef rendang, especially when they offer it in their fried rice, and the sambals are quite nice as well.

                  1777 Westwood Blvd
                  LA, CA 90024

              2. re: waterisgood

                Yeah, it is owned by him and his family, I believe. I've eaten there, and it's decent. Not as good as my mom's cooking, but really what is?

                For other Indonesian options (not related to poker playing Indonesians) check out Pondok Kaki Lima in Duarte. It's an outdoor food fest/BBQ that happens every Saturday morning. Here's my post on it, if anyone is interested:


                1. re: elmomonster

                  I second that. The weekly event in Duarte is quite the treat! Just try to get there earlier than later cuz they tend to run out of the good stuff like rendang if you get there too late.

            2. I've been to one in the mini-mall complex that also has Pinkberry & Rubio's at Maxella & Lincoln. It was not very good. Not sure if that is the place you are referring to.

              I've been looking for good Burmese in LA if anyone has recommendations. Burma Superstar is the single best Asian food in all of San Francisco. Which would be like telling a women she has the single nicest pair of fake breasts in LA.

              2 Replies
              1. re: ElJeffe


                best? i don't know. I think the owners are ethnic chinese from burma, but they might be burman.

                7011 S GREENLEAF AVE

                1. re: ElJeffe

                  That would be Singapore Express. Initially started in the 80s by a Malay family from Singapore, it rocked my world as an intro to Southeast Asian food that wasn't from Thailand. Since then, the original owners sold the business to a Thai gentleman who stayed pretty true to the previous owner's menu while adding some basic Thai dishes. But I have to admit that the place ain't what it used to be. The Malay gentleman who intially owned it was a master at the wok. He called the shots and kept the quality up which was heavily audited by the Singapore Airlines and Air Malaysia flight crews that stayed nearby and would order from him on all of they stopovers. Singaporeans and Malaysians are notorious for being particulary finicky and for getting almost immediately homesick for their food. The crews have since then continuously moved to hotels that are further away and has consequently reduced the demand. Top that off with a kitchen that wants to be more Thai but is still obliged to offer dishes that are somewhat Singaporean and the result is so-so food.

                  The OP's posting is from back in November of last year where there was rumor going around that another Indonesian place was supposed to be opening in this area. But so far, nothing has panned out from this particular poker champ.

                  If you're referring to Elmo's post, the Duarte food festival is as close to the real deal rendition of a Southeast Asian hawker center that one's going to get in So Cal, especially since the Wat Thai Buddhist temple's food festival has been put on hold (hopefully only temporarily).

                  While Indonesian food is in many cases, identical to Singaporean and Malaysian food, you'll find subtle differences in seasoning, names, and the array of dishes. Singaporean and Malaysian cuisine tends to offer more types of dishes from cultures outside of the Malay/Indo culture, and even blending at least a couple of the many cultures that have influenced and/or currently are largely represented in the two countries' populations.