Brunch has become Kuala Lumpur’s favourite weekend pastime. Cafés across town are filling their menus with breakfast and lunch hybrids, featuring sweet and savoury waffles, big English fry-ups and eggs every which way. So let us guide you to the best cafés in town to kick start your weekend.
One of the city's most instagrammable cafes, Blonde is chic yet minimalist serving both Western and Asian cuisines. Serving good comfort brunch food here is none other than the Big Breakfast - two slices of buttered sourdough, a juicy chicken sausage, crispy potato croquettes, maple beef bacon and onion jam. Another must-try breakfast item is the Dutch Style Pancakes with Mutiara figs, fresh berries and maple syrup.
KL’s Breakfast Thieves features a minimal brunch menu of modern Australian dishes with Asian influences – yoghurt and homemade granola coconut black rice red bean pudding, lychee, orange-soaked goji, banana with soft boiled eggs and cheesy soldiers; spicy baked eggs with feta cheese, beef chorizo meatballs and sweet corn; and even eggs Benedict is given an upgrade with braised beef and renkon chips with brown butter hollandaise.
Table & Apron (formerly known as The Kitchen Table) by restaurateur Marcus Low draws inspiration from world-renowned bakeries and restaurants to serve up modern comfort food that showcase local produce. Known for its sharing platters, this bustling restaurant in Damansara Kim focuses on robust, rustic flavours best exemplified in dishes like pulled pork with apple sourdough and cilantro salsa, Sanbanto pork chops with spicy chimichurri, ulam herbed crab rice, and earl grey crème brûlée with shortbread.
One of KL's most good-looking cafés is perched on Jalan Galloway, a curiously unusual option for a contemporary coffee spot. The café is remodeled from a building on-site, while much of its original charm and old-world feel are retained. On the ground floor is a dim, narrow seating area where coffee machines whiz, baristas chatter and tempting cakes parade. Climb up the steep stairs to the first floor for an airy, breezy, rattan-chaired setup. Coffee wise, the folks here don't believe in house blends. Instead, single origins rotate fortnightly, save for the Valrhona hot chocolate that retains a permanent slot on the menu. Cakes here are bang on form with the most indulgent being The King Cake, banana cake layered with peanut butter frosting, banana slices and chocolate.
Wild Honey offers up a huge menu with all the brunch staples, but all very well executed and kept interesting – their Delancy Eggs Benedict Bagel is one of their classic all-day breakfast featuring sliced beef pastrami, poached eggs, tomato & wholegrain mustard hollandaise on sesame seed bagel. More standouts include Wild Honey Fruity Tea, an I Love New York bagel platter, and Snickers Pavlova.
Located just outside the chaotic Telawi streets of Bangsar is Knowhere, where fairy lights and colourful murals combine to create a great spot to have brunch on the weekends. Take your pick from the recently revamped pork-free brunch menu at this Asian Western fusion eatery, which offers an impressive selection ranging from pasta and rice dishes to burgers and salads. Standouts include the nasi ulam ayam bakar; ulam salad with peach vinaigrette; French toast with roasted tomatoes and house-made onion chilli jam; vegetarian pasta bake and smoked duck breast.
The space is so tight you can’t even do a cartwheel, but that’s because it’s lined with shelves of croissants, cinnamon Danish pastries and pies. Get a freshly baked sourdough, inhale the scent and tear off an end – it’s easily one of life’s greatest pleasures. Kenny Hills Bakers was designed for takeaways, but there’s no stopping the crowd from hunkering down for a quick brunch – toasty croque-monsieur, baked eggs flamenco and quiche – at the limited tables outside.
The Red Beanbag is a modern Australian inspired café serving up hearty portions of eggs Benedicts, burgers and French toasts among other brunch delights. If you're in for a full meal, steaks, pastas and the like are also on the menu. Coffee is a specialty here but non-caffeine consumers can try out their chocolate drinks, smoothies and juices. Cakes and other creamy treats are available for afters.
Common Man Coffee Roasters (of our neighbours down south) has landed in KL with a swish new brunch space; this café and roaster from Singapore that started out as a pop-up serving espresso-based brews and mini pastries is now a full-fledged operation. Design-wise, there’s a distinct modernised vibe going on: Peranakan print upholstery, rattan-woven walls, gold accents, ambient pendant lights, CMCR merchandise and coffee paraphernalia lining the shelves. In terms of food and drinks, there will be about ten brunch dishes from CMCR Singapore as well as a dedicated brew bar for coffee (beans will be roasted in Singapore only).
If you're hankering for crepes, be sure to drop by Strangers at 47. Here you'll find a selection of savoury crepes like the mushroom-stuffed Lethal Shrooms, and Shore To Please, which is stuffed with tiger prawns, deep fried squid, roasted cherry tomato and salted egg yolk sauce. Sweet tooths will also find pleasure in sweet crepes like the apple pie-inspired Adam's Sin, and Kayaman, a pandan coconut crepe filled with kaya, gula Melaka and banana fritters.
Taman Desa folks are lucky to have access to fresh loaves of focaccia in the neighbourhood. When we dropped by at 12.30pm, the focaccia was fresh out of the oven, comfortingly warm, with the crust baked to a deep golden brown and topped with Maldon sea salt and slices of lightly salted cherry tomato. A bite through the crust revealed a soft and fluffy centre. It’s delicious, flavourful, but simple – just how a good bread should be. Note that the preservative-free focaccia at Red Kettle – using olive oil, rosemary, bread flour, still water and yeast – is baked fresh in-house every day. By the way, there’s a bacon version as well.
Huckleberry’s breads are made the old fashioned way, using sourdough starters, and the loaves are left to rise longer than usual to produce a lighter texture while letting the flavours develop. Their signature is the Miche Sourdough range, but they also have the classic multigrain, organic meteil, farmer’s bread, and flaky, buttery croissants, just to name a few. There are brunch classics such as eggs Benedict, shakshuka, banana French toast, and the punchy chilli cheese toast with fried eggs (a Mumbai breakfast staple). There are also salads, pastas, pies and sandwiches.