Restaurants & Cafés

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

Best siew yuk in KL
Restaurants

Best siew yuk in KL

From traditional Cantonese-style salt and pepper seasonings to robust five-spice powder rub marinades, this list has got you covered with the best siew yuk in the city.

Best roti canai in KL
Restaurants

Best roti canai in KL

Here are the best places to cure your hankering for buttery roti canai.

Best beef noodles in KL
Restaurants

Best beef noodles in KL

From Soong Kee's meaty and firm beef balls swimming in flavourful soup to Ngau Kee's tender beef tripe, tendon and stomach, we've rounded up a list of the best beef noodles in KL. We're sure you won't have any beef with our list, but if you do, let us know where your favourite is in the comments.

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.

KL's food trends of 2017
Restaurants

KL's food trends of 2017

From nasi lemak everything to cocktails, the Time Out KL team reviewed the past year’s food trends in the city to see which ones took off, and which ones failed to launch.

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 Book online

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
Book online
Uroko Japanese Cuisine
Restaurants Book online

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
See more restaurant reviews

New restaurants and cafés in KL

MadHatter Desserts
Restaurants

MadHatter Desserts

Already a haven for sweet tooths, MadHatter Desserts is the latest dessert spot in Damansara Uptown. It was opened by MasterChef Asia Season 1 finalist Marcus Low, who was dubbed the ‘dessert king’ by judges for his talent in making distinctively enjoyable treats (despite having no professional culinary training prior to joining the show). Before opening shop in Damansara Uptown, Marcus was selling his cakes online and through pop-up shops; even then, there was already a high demand for his cakes. The brick-and-mortar serves his creations in clean and simple surrounds – white walls with plenty of natural light flooding in, alongside wooden tables and chairs. This is quite a contrast with the tendency of other dessert shops and cafés that place too much emphasis on making their spaces Instagram-worthy (so much so, that it sometimes deflects attention from the quality of the food). Here, it’s pretty clear where the focus lies. Marcus is known for two things – his hats and his knack for experimentation when it comes to desserts; hence the name MadHatter Desserts. Most of the desserts are the results of his experiments, which are usually a combination of French culinary techniques and local flavours. For example, the cakes are an interpretation of the French entremet cake – a small multi-layered cake. We say go for the watermelon-assam version – a multi-layered dessert of vanilla sponge cake and assam-infused curd, which is brushed with assam water and topped with a watermelon

Foremula
Restaurants

Foremula

Run by the same people behind Malaysian creative agency Forefront, Foremula is the latest entry to Ara Damansara’s list of yuppie cafés. Operating in the quiet commercial district of Dana 1 Commercial Centre, Foremula offers those working and studying in the area some respite from a busy workday. The scattering of potted plants around and the bright interiors (thanks to suspended lamps and chandeliers, alongside white walls and large windows framing the café that let in lots of daylight) give the space a chilled vibe. The copper cutleries add an elegance to the overall casualness of the place. Foremula also makes use of its corner lot location, using the adjacent alley as an alfresco dining area. On the menu, you’ll find a good mix of Asian and Western flavours with dishes such as laksa pasta (capellini pasta in a coconut cream-based laksa broth topped with tuna flakes and a sunny-side up egg), buttermilk chicken and grilled beef burgers. We particularly liked the grilled chicken thigh satay – grilled whole chicken leg that’s been marinated with fragrant satay marinade and served with peanut sauce. The perfectly marinated chicken is juicy and tender while the accompanying peanut sauce does well to enhance the smokiness of the protein. Good to note: Every item here is served in hefty portions, so think wisely before ordering. For drinks, there’s your standard selection of café options such as lattes, long blacks and cappuccinos. At the time of writing, Foremula uses beans so

Users say
5 out of 5 stars
Kind Kones
Restaurants

Kind Kones

As befitting a kiosk that proclaims to be Southeast Asia’s first vegan ice cream bar, Kind Kones certainly feels and looks the part. The calm 12-seater dessert bar located on the basement floor of 1 Mont Kiara has a clean, almost stark-white look that invites curious passers-by to wander in and ask the obvious question: ‘Can vegan ice cream really taste good?’ Well, the short answer is yes, it can. But not in the same way that dairy ice cream tastes. To make vegan ice cream, Kind Kones creator and owner Serina S Bajaj needed to replace the dairy base with almond, cashew or coconut milk. This resulted in an ice cream that’s lighter and more delicate than dairy ice cream, with a curious (but pleasing) aftertaste depending on the base ingredient. Its dark chocolate ice cream, for example, has a lingering coconut flavour, while the cashew milk flavour carries through in the jackfruit ice cream. Aside from being vegan, the ice cream is made without refined cane sugar or corn syrup (it uses coconut sugar, maple syrup or agave instead), artificial preservatives, stabilisers, emulsifiers, colouring or other synthetic additives. This means that the shelf life of the ice cream is only three to four days, but on the other hand, there’s also way less guilt and calorie-counting when you’re going through a pint of it. Kind Kones has been in the works for over four months before its August launch, during which Serina – who also owns Raisin’ The Roof – developed over 20 flavours that inclu

The Dark Gallery
Restaurants

The Dark Gallery

Located inside MyTOWN Shopping Centre is The Dark Gallery, a chocolate boutique and café specialising in artisanal dark chocolate desserts. The decor here is simple but chic – thanks to a warm brown palette accented with hints of gold – and you’ll also find an informative plaque with illustrations of the chocolate making process along one of the walls. The Dark Gallery is the place to be if you love chocolate, dark chocolate especially. The selection here includes an enviable collection of single origin variants sourced from different countries such as Madagascar, Ecuador, Venezuela and more – think a 64 percent Madagascan, 66 percent Ecuadorian, 70 percent Dominican, and 72 percent Venezuelan. To get a taste of how each variant differs from the other, get a single origin platter. Each tasting platter consists of at least three items of varying cacao percentages, and you can choose either the platter of hot chocolate shots, chocolate pastries, dark chocolate ice cream, or if you want to try everything, the chocolate medley (which has a scoop of ice cream, a hot chocolate shot and a pastry). A handy infographic describing the origins and flavour profiles of the chocolate used in each item accompanies the platter. After you’re done familiarising yourself with the intricacies of dark chocolate, get one of The Dark Gallery’s signature desserts. The Chocolate Rhapsody – three scoops of signature dark, milk and white ice cream on a bed of chocolate soil surrounded by chocolate m

Makan Mana

Talitha Tan
Restaurants

Talitha Tan

Singer-songwriter and gym addict Talitha Tan shows us her favourite makan spots in town.

The Rojak Projek
Restaurants

The Rojak Projek

The three people behind social art enterprise The Rojak Projek – Faye Lim, Jonathan Chong and Rachel Lee – tell us more about the restaurants in the Klang Valley they recommend for a taste of Malaysian comfort food.

Fuad Alhabshi
Restaurants

Fuad Alhabshi

Kyoto Protocol's frontman, Fuad Alhabshi takes us through his favourite makan spots in the city. You can follow him on his Instagram page.

Trisha Toh
Restaurants

Trisha Toh

As a professional food stylist, photographer and community manager for food discovery app Burpple, Trisha Toh is never short of recommended places to eat in KL. We asked her for her top five, and this is what she told us. Continue to follow Trisha's food discoveries on her Instagram. 

See where else to makan

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
See more of KL's best restaurants and cafés

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.

See more of the best food and drink in KL