Medan has the most varied selection of cuisines in Sumatra, from basic Malay-style mie (noodle) and nasi (rice) joints, to top-class hotel restaurants.
Lots of simple warungs (food stalls) occupy the front courtyards of the houses in the little lanes around Mesjid Raya; the menu is on display with a few pre-made curries, coffee, tea and sometimes juices.
The main fruit market, Pasar Ramai (Ramani Market; Jl fhamrin), next to Thamrin Plaza, is a profusion of colours and smells, and has an impressive selection of local and imported tropical fruit.
Majestik Bakery & Cafe (Jl SM Raja 71; pastries 2000Rp) Keep the munchies at bay during a long bus ride with sweets from this super-sized bakery.
Taman Rekreasi Seri Deli (Jl SM Raja; dishes from 8000Rp; S evening only) For basic Malay food, this venue, opposite the Mesjid Raya, is a slightly upmarket approach to stall dining. But the kerupuk (cracker) sellers, blind beggars and spoon players might find you more of an oddity than vice versa.
Sehat Vegetarian (Jl Thamrin; dishes from 10,000Rp, 6am-9pm) The place to go when you can't face another gado gado, this Chinese restaurant has a fascinating choice of unidentifiable vegetarian dishes.
Merdeka Walk (Lapangan Merdeka, Jl Balai Kota;dishes 10,000-15,000Rp; 5-11pm ) Inspired by Singapore's alfresco dining, this collection of outdoor cafes occupies Lapangan Merdeka with both fast food and proper restaurants. You can burn off the calories on a series of bizarre public-exercise equipment at the adjoining sports ground.
Bollywood Food Centre :Lip-smacking Indian-style curries are a tamily affair at this blindingly bright restaurant in Little India (Kampung Keling). It also serves cold Bintang. Malay-Indian roti shops are located nearby.
Ponduk Wisata Angel : With a laidback backpacker vibe, this cafe could almost pass for a beachside shack if it weren't for the insanely busy traffic along SM Raja. It does tasty Indonesian dishes and decent Western food. Sells cold beer.
Corner Cafe Raya : A Western-themed cafe serving breakfast fry-ups and burgers as well as Indonesian dishes.
Tip Top Restaurant : Only the prices have changed at this old colonial relic, great for a drink of bygone imperialism. It offers tasty Indonesian, Chinese and Western dishes, including a good steak menu. The desserts are delicious.
Medan Club : Wealthy and well-dressed expats sip cocktails and dine from the broad international menu, which includes Mexican, French and American dishes.
Traders : The very plush Traders is the perfect spot to blow your dining budget on sushi, snail chowder, lobster dishes or Australian Angus steaks. If you can somehow fit more food in, try the Avocado Mousse cake.
Corner Cafe Raya : Cold beer and Western sports served to a heady mix of seedy sex-pats and fresh-faced backpackers, which makes its location directly opposite the Mesjid Raya mosque a little puzzling.
Traders : The front bar-restaurant has sport on the TV and is busiest on weekends, especially on two-for-one Friday nighi and all-you-can-drink beer on Sunday (90,000Rp). Out the back is a swanky blue neon-lit bar with pool tables and live music.
Medan Club (Jl Kartini 36) A local in stitution, the Medan Club is still the place for many well-to-do locals to socialise on weekends.
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