D’Penyetz appears to be well-received with Singaporeans for their Indonesian-style Ayam Penyet with six levels of spiciness – upped from the previous five.
Because fans just love the heat.
Other than outlets at Downtown East, JEM and Lor Chuan (New Tech Park), it has also recently opened a kiosk concept at Tiong Bahru Plaza.
Ayam Penyet also called “Smashed Fried Chicken” is an East Javanese dish consisting of fried chicken that is smashed to make the meat softer. It is typically served with sambal, fried tofu, tempeh (made from fermented soybeans) and slices of cucumbers.
While Ayam Penyet hasn’t exactly taken Singapore by storm, it has increasingly gained its following over the last decade or so.
The brand’s founder Edy Ongkowijaya is no stranger to Ayam Penyet though, previously the founder of Ayam Penyet Ria – he then split ways with his investors due to management differences.
The menu includes D’Penyetz Smashed Chicken ($7.50), Sweet Marinated Black Sauce Chicken ($7.90), D’Penyetz Smashed Chicken Cutlet ($7.50), Smashed Chicken Cutlet Mozarella Cheese ($8.50).
Other than Chicken, there are also choices of Fried Marinated Duck ($8.50), Fried Marinated Catfish ($7), Fried Marinated Beef Ribs ($9.50), and Beefball Soup aka Bakso Sapi ($7).
This is to be paired with sambal with 6 levels of spiciness, from Level One of mild chilli sauce to Level Six of Sambal Bawang Jontor made from chillies from Papua Island Indonesia.
The guy at counter was friendly, and would make recommendations even though the kiosk was quite busy.
I generally thought that the D’Penyetz Smashed Chicken ($7.50) had a tasty, paper-thin skin on the outer layer, matched with addictive crispy crumbs scattered on top.
The flattening makes the chicken more manageable to eat.
The loosen meat actually made the eating a non-oily affair, as it became possible to consume the literally fork-tender chicken without using hands.
However, while the meat was considerably flavourful, it was a tad too dry at certain parts for me.
As for the fried tofu and tempeh, I once had freshly-fried ones and that made a whole lot of difference. So perhaps they should aim for more consistency.
As for chillies, I tried the Level Two Medium Spicy (Minang Green Chilli Sauce), Level Three Normal Spicy (Premium Shrimp Paste Chilli Sauce) and Level Four Extra Spicy (Sambal Mercon or Fiery Spicy Red Chilli Sauce) on separate occasions.
I loved the Level Three most due to the fieriness matched with saltiness of the shrimp paste.
The faint-hearted may just find it too much to handle, while the chilli lover in me has an upsurge of adrenalin after the blast of spice.
Level Four would be what I describe as “shiok”, sending some heat to the ears (first) then the belly. There are also those who mentioned that Level Four is even spicier than Five.
The Sweet Marinated Black Sauce Chicken ($7.90) was slightly disappointing though, as the chicken piece was noticeably dry, and didn’t help that they provided very little kacap manis sauce.
I also didn’t quite mind the D’Penyetz Smashed Chicken Cutlet ($7.50), as it was quite a meaty portion and convenient to eat without bones, especially after takeaway.
D’Penyetz – Tiong Bahru Plaza
Tiong Bahru Plaza B1-111, 298 Tiong Bahru Road, Singapore 168732
Opening Hours: 11am – 9:30pm (Mon – Sun)
D’Penyetz – JEM
JEM #05-02, 50 Jurong Gateway Road Singapore 608549
Opening hours: 11am – 9pm (Mon – Sun)
D’Penyetz – Downtown East
1 Pasir Ris Close e!Hub, @Downtown East, #02-110, Singapore 519599
Opening hours: 11am – 9:30pm (Mon – Sun)
D’Penyetz – Lor Chuan
151 Lor Chuan, #01-24, Singapore 556741
Opening Hours: 11am – 8:30pm (Mon – Sun)