A village warung in Garut, West Java.

A warung (old spelling waroeng) is a type of small family-owned business often a casual shop, a modest small restaurant or café — in Indonesia,[1] and to a lesser extent, Malaysia. A warung is an essential part of daily life in Indonesia. Today, the term warung has slightly shifted — especially among foreign visitors, expatriates, and people abroad — to refer more specifically to a modest Indonesian restaurant or a place that sells things Indonesian (mostly groceries or foodstuff).[2]

There are establishments on the touristy island of Bali and elsewhere that attach the term warung in their business to indicate their Indonesian nature.[3] Traditionally, warung is indeed a family-owned business, run by the family members, mostly by women.[4]

Traditional warungs are made from wooden, bamboo or thatched materials. More permanent warungs are made from bricks and concrete, some family-owned businesses are attached to their homes. Some smaller portable warungs are made from tin, zinc or some modern version might use fiberglass mold. Warung tenda ia a portable tent warung, covered with canvas, fabric or plastic sheet tent for roofing.


A 19th century image of warung during colonial period

The term warung simply denote a wide category of small businesses, either small shop or small restaurant. It is widely used in Java and most of Indonesia, while in Sumatra and Malay Peninsula its synonym kedai is used instead. In Javanese culture areas, such as in Yogyakarta, Semarang and Surakarta, its counterpart term angkringan is more commonly found.[4] On the other hand, the term toko is used to a larger and more established shop.

The term can also be used to loosely refer to many other types of shops, including the wartel (short for warung telepon, essentially a manned phone booth) and warnet (short for warung internet Internet café).


There are many kinds of warung, some take the form of a small shop that sells cold bottled drinks, candy, cigarettes, snacks, krupuk and other daily necessities, while the larger ones are small restaurant establishments. A warung that sells food typically sells local food; pisang goreng and many kinds of gorengan, nasi goreng (fried rice), and mie goreng (fried noodles).

In resort island of Bali and Lombok, a warung might refer to a touristy cabana cafe that sells locals' favourites as well as Asian or western food. Other than Indonesian dishes, on their menu there might be a selection of soups, steaks, fries, sandwiches or grilled fish.

Some types of warung are:

Most of the time, warung are named after the main dishes they sell. For example, warung bubur kacang ijo or warung burjo sells bubur kacang hijau, warung roti bakar sells grilled bread, warung pecel lele sells pecel lele or fried catfish with sambal, while warung indomie sells cooked instant noodles, although the brand might not always be Indomie.

See also

Wikimedia Commons has media related to Warung.


  1. "Warung and Streetfood". Bali.com. Retrieved 11 February 2015.
  2. Suharmoko, Aditya (17 February 2013). "London-based Indonesian 'warung' feels like home". The Jakarta Post. Retrieved 11 February 2015.
  3. "Warung Bumbu Mertua, Offers Delicious Javanese Cuisine to Tourists". Bali Times. 2 December 2013. Retrieved 11 February 2015.
  4. 1 2 Paule, Willow (26 August 2014). "In Yogyakarta 3 women run 3 very different 'warung'". The Jakarta Post. Retrieved 11 February 2015.
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