From the 13th May to 7th June 2015, the Jakarta Fashion & Food Festival (JFFF) returned for the 12th year in a row. Celebrating culture, traditions and good old heritage, the momentous event showcased the indisputable talent and potential of the Indonesian culinary and fashion industry on an international level.
The main highlights for JFFF were the Fashion Festival, Food Festival and the Gading Nite Carnival. Showcasing contemporary ethnic ready-to-wear collections, the Fashion Festival honoured the work of Indonesia’s top, independent and young designers in a series of runway shows held in separate locations.
Aside from that, JFFF hosted an elaborate Food Festival to bring the people of Jakarta an assortment of traditional Indonesian favourites with unique and nostalgic flavours at Kampoeng Tempo Doeloe, a food fair with a special ambiance of vintage decor resembling an ancient port at the North of Jakarta, Sunda Kelapa Harbour.
Adjacent to Kampoeng Tempo Doeloe was the Wine & Cheese Expo which presented an array of wine, cheese and chocolates from top manufacturers and distributors in Indonesia, as well as various partnering countries worldwide. Integrating a multimedia theatrical concept, the Gading Nite Carnival is a not-to-be-missed production filled with art, dance and exciting splendour.
To learn more about JFFF 2015, we had a chat with the Chairman, Mr. Soegianto Nagaria. Find out more below:
Q: Tell us a little bit about JFFF 2015 and how it has improved from the previous years.
A: It’s the 12th year for JFFF and we do little improvements here and there yearly. This year, for the Gading Nite Carnival, we were able to carry out better lighting, stage control and sequence of the cast. It looked more dynamic and interesting. This time, our choreographer had better control overall and we’re grateful for the great weather we had.
For the Fashion Festival, we got to introduce the richness of one of Indonesia’s national costume, the kebaya. We hope that the audience understand the history behind the kebaya. We’re very fortunate to have strong support and acknowledgement of the designers and kebaya collectors this year.
For the Food Festival, we collaborated with 111 small enterprises and street food vendors to bring in around 200 types of food. For the ambiance, we recreated the nostalgic setting of port Sunda Kelapa, which is an iconic place in the past with peculiar ships and good food. We replicated that setting at Kampoeng Tempo Doeloe and we hope it brings back good memories, paired with good food. It’s something we can all relate to and it’s really well portrayed.
Besides that, we have the Wine & Cheese Expo whereby we collaborated with various countries to mesh the international wine, cheese and chocolate offering with Indonesia’s own produce.
Q: Why did you guys decide on Kampoeng Tempo Doeloe?
A: We needed something that was of people’s interest. Something that was nostalgic and close to their hearts. It was tough when we did this eight years ago, but now, everyone knows about Kampoeng Tempo Doeloe. People would want to come because of our track record. Also, like I mentioned earlier, we really wanted to bring back the nostalgic memories of port Sunda Kelapa.
To make things more exciting, we also have MasterChef Indonesia judge, Chef Marinka, who has taken some of the traditional fare to the next level by showing everyone how to plate and present the food in a more appealing and modern way. This puts the Indonesian culinary offerings closer to the heart of the international audience.
Q: How are you planning to bring JFFF higher on an international level?
A: We did that for the first JFFF. However, right now, we’d like to focus on promoting Indonesian designers. We want the international audience to know more about the Indonesian fashion and culinary industry by observing it though our eyes. This is one of the reasons why we also focus on using Indonesian models. They’re beautiful and great. We don’t lack that standard and we want to promote that. To go international, we’d have to have the international audience come and tap into our main schedule of events. We want to be their agenda, but that’s our aim for the next three years.
Q: Can you name me some of your favourite dishes found at Kampoeng Tempo Doeloe?
A: One dessert would be the srabi solo. The lady owner cooks everything herself and it’s freshly cooked over charcoal. It’s a sweet coconut based dessert that’s authentic in flavour. This year, we also prepared some menus so that people can visit Kampoeng Tempo Doeloe and try the different foods without being too bloated. Each of the menus feature a balanced pairing of food. Another dish I like is a soup called cotota. The soup has 12 herbs in it and you have the soup with ketupat plus a little chilli. It’s delicious.
Q: How is JFFF going to continue to preserve Indonesia’s culture and traditions in the midst of modernisation?
A: When our designers create their pieces, they still incorporate a lot of heritage into their work and I think that’s important. They tend to portray heritage with a modern twist. One of the fundamental ways we work is to record everything and have it at easy access on the Internet. By documenting everything and continuing to do so within the next 10 years, we would be able to preserve these traditions.
Do access the official website for the Jakarta Fashion & Food Festival for more details and stay tuned for more articles regarding the festival coming your way.