MELBOURNE | I’ve been meaning to get to Richmond sandwich shop Warkop for a while now, intrigued by their Indonesian spin on the sandwich craze that’s been sweeping across Melbourne. They recently opened a bigger, second location in Melbourne’s CBD, which I visited for for What’s On Melbourne.
I met Jakarta-born chef Barry Susanto (previously at Navi), who owns Warkop with his friend, barista Erwin Chandra, who also hails from Indonesia. Fuelled by homesickness during lockdown, a love of sandwiches and the food of their homeland, the duo started experimenting until they were ready to open a bricks and mortar store.
The CBD location is a natural progression from the first store. A bigger space and longer opening hours has allowed for an expanded menu. There’s the signature sandwiches, a few new ones, breakfast options, and desserts. All inspired by Indonesian flavours and dishes. The coffee uses Duke Beans (Barry and Erwin met while working there), and is excellent.
Creations include things like charred pork, sambal burrata, gailan, lettuce, pickle shallot, and black garlic in shokupan bread; beef brisket pastrami with flavours of rendang, pickles, American cheese, and rendang sauce on light rye; and gado gado – tempeh, tofu, sprouts, lettuce, and peanut sauce, in focaccia. It’s all very different to your usual sandwich fare, and it works.
If you have a sweet tooth, it’s things like rum vanilla cream puffs, kaya glazed crullers, and the classic Indonesian drink, es teller, in friand form. It’s all very tasty stuff.
13 Little Collins Street
Mon – Fri: 7:00am to 3:00pm
Sat – Sun: 8:00am to 3:00pm