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ATL MARANATHA

Cuisine: Indonesian

At first it doesn’t seem right. Here, in your hand, is a perfectly normal-looking fried chicken drumstick. The first bite reveals skin that has an almost supersonic crunch and flesh made tender thanks to an eight-hour stint in a pressure cooker. The second bite will include the thigh bone, but you won’t nibble around it; you’ll munch right through. Soft-bone fried chicken, or ayam goreng tulang lunak $8, is a must at this tiny Kensington restaurant where you write your order on the supplied pad, fetch your own cutlery and pour your own drinks (it’s BYO, including wine glasses if you don’t want to sip from plastic cups). Duck $10 also gets the soft-bone treatment. There’s little in the way of light green salad, so be prepared for a meat-athon. It’s worth it. 

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SUSHI TENGOKU

Cuisine: Indonesian,Japanese

Although this traditional Japanese restaurant is in the midst of renovations, that’s no deterrent for keen foodies who like their prices low and their sushi cuts big. Do as the Japanese do and start with a shared smorgasbord of fresh salmon, tuna, squid and scampi sushi pieces, from $2.50, and add your choice of sides. We like the eggy omelette tamago $3 for the texture contrast. If pick-and-mix isn’t your style, the safe-bet chicken teriyaki main $12 is good or fill up on agedashi tofu $8. For dessert, housemade icecream in red bean, rum and raisin, coffee and green tea flavours is essential. At two scoops for $1, try them all. Go again when the renos are done: we’re predicting higher marks for ambience then.

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