From the comforting soupy bowls of noodles to the fried variety usually reserved for late night cravings, we’ve got you covered. Here are KL’s top noodle dishes.
A good curry broth is oftentimes a solo performer. Its flavours are robust, creamy and assertive, forcing the rest of the supporting ingredients – yellow noodles, long beans, tau fu pok, pig skin and cockles – to dance to its spicy tunes. And it’s exactly this sort of broth that holds 168’s curry noodles together.
Situated at the front of O&S, this assam and curry laksa stall has been around for more than 25 years. Unlike the Penang-style assam laksa, the mackerel fish here is broken into chunky bits, complemented with a thick fish broth (with more fish pieces), cucumber strips and a spoonful of sweet shrimp paste.
This Penang-style char kuey teow is all the hype because of their promising char kuey teow with good wok hei. True enough, the flat noodles are well-oiled and studded with huge prawns, cockles, lap cheong, chives, bean sprouts and fried lard. Plus, you get a choice between chicken or duck egg.
RM11.50; RM12.50 (with duck egg)
The chee cheong fun at Yap Hup Kee is a worthwhile reason to venture to Pudu. This 86-year-old restaurant serves its chee cheong fun with dried shrimp (instead of the usual sesame seeds). Highlights: fresh yong tau fu (especially creative versions such as bacon-wrapped broccoli and tofu with salted fish), silky noodles and a smooth curry base.
The milky broth, fortified with big pieces of fried ikan kerapu, vermicelli, preserved vegetables, sliced tomatoes, ginger, evaporated milk and a dash of siu heng wine, is potent enough to see you through a rainy day. Swap fried fish for fish paste, or song yu (big head carp) whenever they’re in stock.
A chilly day calls for a bowl of pan mee with lashings of chilli flakes. This ultimate pick-me-up is homey – springy noodles are tempered with the addition of minced pork, fried anchovies and a wobbly, half-boiled egg. Buoyed by a spritz of lime, the slightly tangy chilli flakes will deliver the heat you need.
Toast & Roast makes our eating decisions simpler by combining both juicy char siu slices and a simple bowl of Hakka mee. The noodles are crowned with spring onions and crispy fish skin, but that’s not all; underneath the golden noodles you’ll find minced pork.
RM7.40 (with char siu)
The city’s best Hokkien mee can be found at Kim Lian Kee – how can any dime a dozen stall rival its birthplace? A slurp of the thick noodles – with dark soy sauce, lard, imbued with charcoal-fire wok hei – is all you need to sate that late night snack attack.
Malaysians’ love for food manifests itself gloriously in the form of a Maggi goreng, for which there is always a special place in our stomachs (especially when it’s 3am). Nasi Kandar Bestari whips up a springy, slurp-worthy version; ask for tambah pedas, and then top it off with a telur mata. Also try: the Indomie burger (not a burger, but Indomie noodles stir fried with a diced-up burger patty).
Aunt Christina’s Sarawak Laksa may have moved from Bangsar's Lucky Garden, but the noodles remain as good as ever. Most notable is the tangy broth, robust with herbs and spices, and thickened with coconut milk; it swims with thicker-than-vermicelli noodles, topped with plump king prawns, egg strips and taugeh.
Tables are hard to come by at this bustling mamak-style restaurant – and while its reputation for banana leaf rice reaches far and wide, the mee goreng makes us come back for more. What it is: yellow noodles stir fried with chilli, egg, tofu, tomato sauce and spices, served on a banana leaf.
For that authentic Penang experience, this bowl of prawn mee will satisfy your cravings. It’s a generous bowl of noodles with kangkung, taugeh, fried onions, eggs and the star of the dish, the sweet and fresh prawns. Go for add-ons of pork ribs, pork intestines, big prawns and more for a super-sized experience.
Nail the triumvirate of wantan mee – the egg noodles, dumplings and char siu – and you’ll build yourself a legion of fervent followers. Hung Kee on Jalan Loke Yew has been around for 50 years, serving great char siu that is nicely charred around the edges with the perfect ratio of fatty to lean bits.
The noodles arrive in a broth you’ll want to slurp right up, because what fine broth it is: hiding unsuspected riches – minced meat, tender liver, innards – beyond its cloudy surface, topped with an egg. Good pork noodles come to those who wait, and we’ll warn you here: the wait is 45 minutes at peak hours (read: avoid lunchtime).
Want rice instead?
As part of our 100 best dishes and drinks in KL feature, we show you the best local rice dishes you have to try, from the contentious nasi lemak with fluffy rice and punchy sambal, to the humble chicken rice topped with succulent meat and fragrant garlic chilli dip.