Restaurants & Cafés

The best restaurants and cafés in Kuala Lumpur, including restaurant reviews, new restaurants and editors' picks

The best nitro coffee in KL
Restaurants

The best nitro coffee in KL

Nitro coffee, one of the many variations of cold coffee, is basically cold brew infused with nitrogen and served from a tap. It makes for a very pretty sight with the cascading effect and frothy head, much like a pint of Guinness but without the alcohol.

The best char siew in KL
Restaurants

The best char siew in KL

Nothing says comfort food like tender well-caramelised barbecued pork with the perfect fat-to-lean meat ratio. From honey-glazed meat to sticky and chewy fatty pork belly with the right amount of char and crunch, stop and smell the roasts with our guide to the best char siew in KL.

Earl Grey desserts in KL
Restaurants

Earl Grey desserts in KL

Green tea has dominated the dessert scene for a while now, with nearly every café sporting its own matcha creation. But now it's time for another tea to take the spotlight; it's the Earl Grey's time to shine in KL.

Best workday lunch spots in KL City Centre
Restaurants

Best workday lunch spots in KL City Centre

Make your way to these places in KL City Centre come office lunch hour, featuring ayam goreng berempah, chee cheong fun, lei cha, porridge and more.

New restaurants, cafés and bars in KL to try this month
Restaurants

New restaurants, cafés and bars in KL to try this month

We’ve been scouting out the city’s newest restaurants, cafés and bars to bring you this ultimate list. Change up your dining routine this month with these recent entries. Let the Instagramming begin.

Latest restaurant reviews

Table & Apron
Restaurants

Table & Apron

Table & Apron – formerly The Kitchen Table Restaurant & Bakery – doesn’t exist to disrupt the scene. From the outside, it barely stretches the boundaries of what is an already saturated restaurant-cum-bakery scene. But none of it matters. Because right from its birth in 2014, Table & Apron has proven to be a restaurant that has in spades a component so elementary yet so rare – heart. Through hard work, dedication and all the boring old-fashioned virtues of an honest operation, owner Marcus Low and his team have carved for us a little treasure in Damansara Kim. (Credit must also be given to former co-owner Mei Wan Tan.) The narcissism you’ll find in so many KL restaurants is refreshingly stripped off here; there’s no time and place for vanity if the team is worrying about what’s going on your plate. If it’s all sounding a bit ingenuous to you, therein lies the restaurant’s charm. Of course, a large part of the restaurant’s ‘soul’ is owing to the service led by one gracious Nelaton Ong. Even at peak brunch hour on a Saturday, the floor staff are efficient, attentive and willing to provide customised service whether in the form of a complimentary cookie for your restless kid or an informed recommendation for your diet-restricted friend. There’s a sense that they actually want to take care of you. There are signatures that have stood the test of time, cementing their place on the menu. If you’ve been even once to Table & Apron, you would have tried the fried chicken (RM23) who

Time Out says
  • 5 out of 5 stars
Kayra
Restaurants

Kayra

If your ideas about coconut have been limited to santan and gula Melaka, Kayra is the lesson that will change everything you know about the humble fruit. At TTDI’s bearer of Keralan cuisine, coconut is put on a pedestal, bestowed a gold crown, and praised with kind words no matter the form or colour it takes. All good meals here should begin with the Kerala Cooler (RM12), a milkshake-like beverage with a base of coconut milk, laced with brown sugar and cardamom. The Spiced Konju (RM18), tiger prawns marinated with crushed fennel and coriander seeds and grilled to a char, should follow closely. You will suck on the prawn head until the juices run out, you will chew on the fractured seeds that graze the sweet flesh, and you will reach for raw red onion to soothe the palate. It’ll be one of the best things you eat in any Indian restaurant in the city. The clear fish soup with pumpkin, tapioca and raw banana (RM12) is less rousing in comparison but is indicative of a clean, sparkling fish stock. Because of Kerala’s coastal setting, seafood is heavily featured in its cuisine, so I’d suggest focusing on prawn and fish over chicken or mutton. You won’t miss the meat when fronted with the Kerala fish curry (RM30), hunks of tenggiri carefully folded into a smooth, coconut milk-tinged gravy. 'Coconut is the true celebrant here' In a similar vein is the Chemeen Mangga (RM32), a curry with coconut-marinated prawns and raw mango slices. It’s creamy once again, and a dream when s

Time Out says
  • 4 out of 5 stars
Uroko Japanese Cuisine
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Uroko Japanese Cuisine

Uroko has a bit of everything. It’s a party box of choices – nigiri and maki rolls, sashimi platters, noodles, tempura, yakitori, nabe and donburi, all packed into a massive hardbound menu that requires ample table space to flip through and about 15 minutes to grasp from cover to cover. So far, it’s not unlike Sushi Zanmai, but an affluent man’s version, if you will. Commonly, a large menu can come across as unfocused or lacking of speciality dishes, but Uroko turns out to be an exception. Case in point: the salmon ball salad (RM22). Salmon sashimi slices finished with salmon roe are draped around a zesty, crunchy mound of watercress. It’s all the things a salad wants to be – bright, sprightly and textural. Many of the entries at Uroko are similarly exciting and sometimes, original. While it may be tempting to opt for a sushi moriawase, it’s far more rewarding to try the more out-of-the-box rolls swathed in flavoured mayo, roe and badassery. For instance, the Uroko Maki (RM38) is a glitzy display of salmon, crab sticks, avocado, mentaiko and caviar – it’s about as much as fun as you can have in Seksyen 17. Look out for the page in the menu titled ‘Chef’s Specialities’ where most of the restaurant’s playful items reside. As its name suggests, the baked oyster with cod roe and cheese (RM12) does no wrong. The prawn stick (RM24) – marked as a recommended dish – is skewered prawns slathered in a mysterious creamy, enigmatic garlic sauce and liberally topped with cod roe. The p

Time Out says
  • 4 out of 5 stars
Book online
French Feast
Restaurants

French Feast

I suppose when it comes down to it, we all want to eat nice food in nice places that don’t cost the moon. Sure, we have French restaurants in KL where caramel is served upright in tangled webs; restaurants where the silverware is as shiny as the right side up of tinfoil; and of course, those that bestow themselves upon celebrities and socialites. But oftentimes, we don’t want the theatrics; we just want good, honest food in generous portions. We want thick hunks of bread to tear alongside juicy slabs of meat. We want to laugh until red wine squirts out our noses. Well, you get what I mean. And this is where French Feast comes in, like the bumbling, doting grandmother KL never had. Run by Jean-Michel Fraisse, formerly of La Vie En Rose, this restaurant is a celebration of all things tried-and-tested in French cuisine. Think Troyes tripe sausages with onions and mustard, braised rabbit with white wine and sautéed potatoes, and country-style terrines with onion jam and pickles. It’s a vintage French cookbook come to life, and frankly, it’s a hoot. Because I’m feeling a bit ’80s, I start with the French onion soup (RM28). And it’s just what the doctor ordered, if the doctor was Julia Child on a crackly television box set. The broth is not overly sweet or jammy, and the Comté cheese topping on the bread becomes sticky and chewy when pushed down into the soup. The next thing I order is irrespective of the chef’s skills because it comes straight from a can – ‘vintage’ mackerel c

Time Out says
  • 4 out of 5 stars
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New restaurants and cafés in KL

GinRikSha
Restaurants

GinRikSha

GinRikSha have got a good thing going with their vibrant yet cosy interior and fun food. There’s an ease that carries through from the casual vibe to the food, which makes a meal here rather enjoyable. The feature wall of plants is striking, and so are the colourful wheels on the ceiling – a visual nod to the restaurant and bar’s name, which is inspired by a form of transport once prevalent in the region: the rickshaw. And the three large mirrored discs on one of the walls, we think they add an artistic merit to the place, probably because they sort of remind us of Anish Kapoor’s works, but we digress. The menu is extensive, and you’re encouraged to order a variety of dishes to share. The restaurant describes their food as ‘Asian cuisine with a modern twist’, but the dishes are largely Indian in origin. Admittedly, some of them are modern interpretations of classic Indian cooking (like the mutton varuval quesadilla, masala mussels, butter chicken poutine, Bombay masala salmon, etc), but others are merely presented more elegantly (like the boneless mutton varuval that’s served with toasted bread). The good thing is, while the food has been updated, they don’t come across as try-hard or pretentious. Instead, they stay true to the familiar bold, punchy flavours that are a joy to eat. Think restaurant elegance but with the underpinning casualness of a café. Notable dishes include the banana leaf-wrapped sea bass that’s baked on a bed of basmati rice and served with brinjal samb

Colony KL
Restaurants

Colony KL

The new kid on the old Pudu block is Colony, a restaurant founded by the same people behind atas appam restaurant Hoppers. Serving up a menu spanning Burmese, Sri Lankan, Indian and Malaysian cuisine, Colony occupies the same space that used to be the bar H. by Hoppers. The same pots of leafy tropical greens, rattan chairs and brightly coloured seats from the bar’s days are still there, so you’ll get the same laidback vibe but now paired with the new offerings from Colony. Start with The Old Delhi – house-made atta bread served with creamy bone marrow butter and spiced apple chutney. Pair this comforting appetiser with the sure-fire crowd pleaser, The Rompin; it’s calamari dressed with calamansi, garlic, cili padi, vinegar, basil and ulam raja. Once you’ve had your fill of warm bread and squid, a piece or two of The Madras – tender and juicy brined fried chicken marinated with tandoori spices, served with mint aioli – will pave the way nicely for Colony’s meatier mains. The stars at Colony are The Sri Pada – 48-hour-braised lamb ribs glazed in New Zealand’s Karma Cola soda, with sprinkles of nuts, pomegranate and mint – and The Salem, well-portioned slow-cooked duck in biryani with roasted carrots and onions, served with raita on the side. For dessert, go for the lemongrass-infused watalappam tart if you’re a fan of serai. The coconut custard pudding commonly found in Tamil Nadu, India is given a lemongrass twist here, which introduces a sharp tang to the usually sweet pud

Ru Di Fook Noodle Bar
Restaurants

Ru Di Fook Noodle Bar

Ru Di Fook is a Chinese- Japanese fusion noodle bar that specialises in wan tan noodles, creative desserts and good coffee. The interior is cool, taking on the air of a modern bistro with a nod to neo-Tokyo aesthetics – think contrasting white-tiled and bare brick walls, lots of natural light and manga-style graphics. Upgraded wan tan noodles are Ru Di Fook’s calling card. A serving here features fried wan tans on a bed of springy egg noodles and topped with half an onsen egg, kai lan and fried lard. Desserts are a delicious play on our childhood nostalgia; expect Milo pie, Horlicks banana crumble, and the ‘Tian Mimi Chawanmushi’ – soy custard topped with barley, ginkgo seeds, a quail egg and a slice of sugar-coated dry fu chuk, which you can crumble into your chawanmushi. For drinks, try the V60 filter coffee which is served in a saké set.

S'Mores
Restaurants

S'Mores

Previously a bar known for its cheap beer deals, S’Mores has completely rebranded itself into a friendly neighborhood restaurant and bar. The interior here feels very homey, with wooden furniture and beams filling up the space. Fun fact: The beams used to be TNB poles in Ipoh in the 1980s. If you’re a pork lover, you’ll enjoy S’Mores’ pork-heavy menu. One of the highlights here is the ‘water shortage bak kut teh’, which is an interesting spin on the dry bak kut teh. Their pork chop, cooked in the Big Bertha is just as good; the Big Bertha – a large charcoal oven made of cast iron – is the restaurant’s pride and joy. If you’re more experimental, go for the platter of pork liver pâté, tongue, cheek, intestines, tail, kidney and ears.

The best restaurants and cafés in KL

Bakar
Restaurants

Bakar

Guys, let’s all calm down about the ‘grill-concept’ trend. Grilling as a cooking method is at least 300,000 years old, and these days, there’s nothing novel about a restaurant that cooks food directly over a source of heat. Fortunately, Bakar’s affiliation with charcoal fire is far from opportunistic – spend one night here and it’s easy to see that boundaries are meddled with, for KL standards at least. Trust The BIG Group in all manner of aesthetic; every detail is measured to enhance the experience, from the white marble tiling, to the matchbox mural, to the open kitchen – it’s stylish, but not outwardly so. And when I ask for recommendations, the waiters are kind and welcoming, a true refresher in Bangsar. I start with the barbecue classic – grilled watermelon. It comes in a salad with strawberry, pomegranate, chilli, radish, cucumber and coriander. Objectively, the flavours sound threatening, but when eaten together in one forkful, they open up well. The juiciness of the fruit against the sharpness of coriander, the surprise crunch of the cucumber, the mild nuttiness of sesame seeds – it’s like playing many rounds on a coin-operated claw crane, and getting a different soft toy at every attempt. The second starter of parcelled clam bake is more predictable, but still very, very good. The flavours – lemongrass, chilli, pandan – can easily be found in any Asian- Western mash-up, but at Bakar, Chef Keith Choong extrudes the most out of each ingredient. The broth in which t

Users say
  • 4 out of 5 stars
Cantaloupe
Restaurants

Cantaloupe

Try the deftly-prepared foie gras satay at one of KL’s most stunning restaurants.

Users say
  • 5 out of 5 stars
Fuego
Restaurants

Fuego

The city view may be stunning, but it's the modern approach to grill and the inventive cocktails that make this restaurant and bar one of the best in the city.

Users say
  • 5 out of 5 stars
Mercat
Bars and pubs

Mercat

This Catalan gastrobar in Bangsar is one of the area’s more stylish for a quick dash to Europe. Chef David Caral, formerly of Circus, has concocted a menu rarely seen in the city – Iberico ham croquettes, salmorejo (chilled tomato puree), rice cooked with squid ink and a fun take on patatas bravas are only a few of the tapas-sized plates on offer. When in doubt, definitely try the cold eggplant puree with pine nuts and honey; but when in a crisis, the Iberico pork ribs with roasted peppers are a must.

Users say
  • 4 out of 5 stars
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The best of food and drink in KL

The best cafés in KL
Restaurants

The best cafés in KL

You’ve got to admit that a trip to a good café sets you in a cheery mood – the sun-soaked space, glorious sunny side ups and that tingling dose of caffeine. The Time Out KL team maps out the best cafés for every occasion, from Instagram eye candies to the brunch of champions.

The best chai lattes in KL
Restaurants

The best chai lattes in KL

Gaining precious real estate space on KL café menus is the chai latte, an updated version of the masala chai available on the streets of India and in most Indian restaurants around town. Instead of espresso, the chai latte is made with frothed milk and concentrated spiced tea. The next time you crave chai, here’s where to go.

The best teahouses in KL
Restaurants

The best teahouses in KL

Fancy a spot of tea? Whether you're looking for traditional Chinese tea over dim sum or prefer to take the English route with scones and clotted cream, head to these recommended teahouses in KL. 

The best restaurants and cafés in KL
Restaurants

The best restaurants and cafés in KL

The Time Out Kuala Lumpur Food 40 is our monthly, definitive guide for where to eat in the Klang Valley. Establishments will only appear in this list if they offer cuisine of a very high standard that is truly unique and worthy of your custom. No entry into the Food 40 has provided any Time Out team member with a free meal or other incentive – although plenty have tried! All have been chosen honestly, anonymously and after a great deal of deliberation by our team of expert food critics.

The best restaurants in KL for healthy eating
Restaurants

The best restaurants in KL for healthy eating

Get in on the healthy food movement and start eating clean at these top restaurants for healthy eats in KL. We've also included a quick guide to meal portions and healthy-eating alternatives as recommended by some of the individuals behind these eateries. RECOMMENDED: Guide to eating clean

The best banana leaf restaurants in KL
Restaurants

The best banana leaf restaurants in KL

Tired of the usual suspects when it comes to banana leaf rice? We bury our fingers in rice and curry to track down some of Klang Valley’s lesser-known banana leaf restaurants, plus a few old favourites.

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