The best restaurants and cafés in Bangsar

Featuring the neighbourhood's best places to eat

Photo: Stacy Liu

From the busy streets of Telawi to the more laidback Jalan Bangkung and Jalan Kemuja, we round up the best restaurants and cafés in the neighbourhood. 

RECOMMENDED: Bangsar area guide

Restaurants and cafés

Proof Pizza + Wine
Restaurants

Proof Pizza + Wine

APW’s latest addition Proof Pizza + Wine serves up an artisanal array of pizzas and, well, wine. Although a two-storey space, the restaurant is fairly small, exuding an intimate atmosphere. The first floor is shared between the seating area and the kitchen, while the loft upstairs holds a few booths for small groups. The floor-to-ceiling wine shelf commands your view as you walk in, and there are piles of logs scattered around the restaurant – not just as mere props, but actually used to fuel their impressive wood-fire ovens. Proof’s menu is divided into the classic and gourmet sections. Classic flavours include the Margherita and Diavola (house-blend tomato sauce, chorizo, red onions, chilli flakes and mozzarella); while their gourmet list flaunts a more eclectic combination of ingredients and toppings like black truffle paste, nduja sausage (a spicy, spreadable salami) and Taleggio cheese. And helping the pizzas in Proof to stand out from the rest of the crowd is their crust; made with dough prepared two days in advance and baked in wood-fire ovens, the crusts are crunchy on the outside and fluffy on the inside – the ideal crust, if you will. Pair your meal with a glass of wine from their curated list and end the meal on a sweet note with a scoop of Inside Scoop’s ice cream – flavours are seasonal so be sure to ask what they have in store

Sri Nirwana Maju Bangsar
Restaurants

Sri Nirwana Maju Bangsar

On a suburban strip packed with fine dining options and swanky European eateries, Sir Nirwana Maju’s livelier Bangsar outlet stands out as Jalan Telawi’s go-to banana leaf rice haunt. Tables are hard to come by at this perpetually bustling mamak-style restaurant (forget about sitting indoors; you’ll likely have to make do with plastic chairs along the corridor), while prices have steadily increased and service has slowed over the years. But Nirwana’s winning combination of banana leaf rice with top notch condiments, well-prepared roti and refreshing lassi continues to ensure that locals and foreigners alike keep coming back for more. Sri Nirwana Maju has a separate outlet at Subang Jaya. Awards Food Awards 2010, 2011, 2012 and 2013   Sri Nirwana Maju was shortlisted Best Indian in the Time Out KL Food Awards2010, 2011 and 2013. It was shortlisted Best Banana Leaf in 2012. Our food awards are 100% voted for by the people of KL. This way, we guarantee that popularity and consistent performance are rewarded.

Ming Room
Restaurants

Ming Room

Opened in 2003, The Ming Room serves authentic Cantonese cuisine with a touch of creative liberty. Recently refurbished, be impressed with the historical and elegant renovations, complete with antique terracotta horses as well as six private dining rooms to cater to 300 pax. Highlights include the baked foie gras with stuffed sea clams and the steamed fresh water prawn with radish cakes. In addition to the obvious Hong Kong dim sum, standard Chinese fare with a twist is served. A popular dessert among their patrons is the chilled durian pudding. As featured in Time Out KL's 101 things to do in KL

Bocosan Izakaya
Restaurants

Bocosan Izakaya

Bangsar South’s latest Japanese restaurant carries much of the cool and casual vibe that made its elder sibling, Botanica & Co, a success in drawing diners to this part of KL. As far as the aesthetic details are concerned, Bocosan Izakaya ticks all the boxes: from the spacious, sun-lit environment to the Nordic-hued (read: shades of grey and natural wood) serving trays, chairs and bowls, everything works together to create a breezy and calm restaurant that isn’t always associated with a messy, bustling izakaya. Start with sashimi moriawase (RM49), which comprises three types of generously cut sashimi. The crispy kakiage udon best represents Bocosan’s balanced and fun approach to food: the chewy udon noodles are contrasted by a six-inch block of tempura-fried vegetables that sits atop, and the whole dish is brought together by a light, clean-tasting broth. As for desserts, go for the mizu shingen mochi – a raindrop jelly cake with roasted soy bean powder and Japanese black sugar.

Ashley's by Living Food
Restaurants

Ashley's by Living Food

Living Food bistro’s maiden offshoot stays true to its health food roots without sacrificing panache and élan. Spruced-up comfort food like the quinoa salad as well as baked brie with almonds and cranberries share the spotlight in this quirky, stylish spot on Jalan Telawi 3. Other dishes to try here include the scrumptious saffron-spiced paella with shrimp, scallop and pearl snapper as well as the Portobello mushroom and buckwheat polenta stack.

Botanica+Co
Restaurants Book online

Botanica+Co

With a light-filled space dominated by two Ficus trees and with plants dotted around, Botanica + Co restaurant and bar can be best described as lush. It reminds us of a glass house in a botanical garden; it’s a beautiful space, one that’s made for a leisurely meal. And the diverse menu plays into that theme very well.Helmed by Sam Neoh, the chef behind the popular PS.Café in Singapore, the crowd-pleasing menu features a balanced mix of cuisines. The pizza list is long, and it’s complemented by Asian and Western comfort food the likes of rotisserie chicken, duck rendang, seafood bisque linguine, Hokkien mee, fish and chips, burgers and more. If you prefer something light, there are a few choices for salads and sandwiches as well.On the bar side, Botanica + Co serves cocktails featuring Asian ingredients – think yuzu, papaya and mango. Selected cocktails are available in carafes as well, perfect for sharing between two and four people.

Users say
5 out of 5 stars
Book online
Southern Rock Seafood
Restaurants Book online

Southern Rock Seafood

With its beginnings as Shucked the oyster bar in Ben’s Independent Grocer’s and as a seafood supplier in Bangsar, it’s no surprise that the focus here is on seafood, and very fresh ones at that.

Book online
Bella by BIG
Restaurants

Bella by BIG

Set in the quiet enclave of restaurants on Lorong Kurau, this Italian eatery by the BIG Group is an intimate, fuss-free space that offers a more casual dining experience – great for nerve-wracking first-dates – while small details like table-top plants add to the romantic charm. Couple that with Bella's Italian fare and you've got yourself the ideal simple date night joint. 

Bakar
Restaurants

Bakar

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.

Time Out says
4 out of 5 stars
Users say
4 out of 5 stars
Breakfast Thieves Kuala Lumpur
Restaurants

Breakfast Thieves Kuala Lumpur

After Pulp, APW adds another café to its premises, and it’s a very handsome one. Already attracting brunch hunters and Instagrammers in droves, Breakfast Thieves (yes, it’s the sister of the one based in an old chocolate factory in Fitzroy, Melbourne) is a stunner: a glasshouse-like space with lots of pale wood, white tiles, pastel railings and concrete, punctuated by the occasional plant and exposed light bulb. Founded by a team of Malaysians (Brandon Chin, Kevin Foo and Edwin Koh), KL’s Breakfast Thieves features a minimal brunch menu of modern Australian dishes with Asian influences – think berry compote yoghurt with granola, ginger apple crumble and soft-boiled eggs; spicy baked eggs with beef salami, onion jam and okra; and even eggs Benedict is given an upgrade with braised beef cheeks, honey apple compote and yuzu hollandaise. What you can look forward to: an upcoming lunch menu with more Malaysian-centric dishes such as polenta soft-shell crab burger with lemongrass-chilli sauce and a side of kaffir lime salted chips, a nasi kerabu dish named 1MBT, popiah stuffed with shredded crab and honey herbed ricotta, and more.  Rounding out the deal is a simple coffee menu (sorry, no filter coffee for now) with the usual latte, double espresso and cappuccino. But the Magic is the one you have to try: it’s a double ristretto topped with steamed milk.

Chef Low
Restaurants

Chef Low

November 2012 Sandwiched between oleaginous car workshops in a grimy back alley of grimy Lucky Gardens, against all odds Chef Low has managed to survive the curse of its predecessors. It’s the latest in a long list of doomed eateries to attempt a business in that specific address, but unlike the rest has garnered a following of regulars that attests to its status as one of the go-to destinations for reliably good, home-style Chinese food in KL. With all of its energy invested into the food and none whatsoever in the décor, Chef Low’s menu is – when you’ve taken in the pink tablecloths and plastic furniture – impressively ambitious. From seafood to poultry and medicinal foods to game, the plastic encased a la carte menu contains virtually every gastronomic staple that’s available in Chinese and seafood restaurants. Happily however, the jack-of-all-tradesmaster-of-none saying doesn’t apply here: At Chef Low’s, the food is consistently well prepared and infused with the confidence and verve of a cook who knows his trade well and isn’t afraid to show it. A signature dish is the Chinese-style fried bacon with marmite sauce, chilli padi and lime, which also happens to be a dangerous thing to order. Apart from the delightful dance it performs on the palate, the fried marmite bacon also proves two other things – the cooks at Chef Low a) love cooking with marmite and b) are very good at creating dishes that include marmite. To wit: marmite spare ribs which are crispy, chewy and rip

Time Out says
4 out of 5 stars
Yeast
Restaurants Book online

Yeast

Yeast makes it possible for you to indulge in French food without having to bust your savings. The dinner menu is as exciting as classic French food goes. Things like grilled tenderloin, boeuf bourguignon (braised short ribs in red wine), roasted chicken roulade with basil and confit of lamb shoulder make up the menu. Breads and pastries also act as main actors. Watch out for Chef Mathieu Rabau, a charming French import with Michelin star experience. For more, see feature. As featured in Time Out KL's 101 things to do in KL Awards Food Awards 2013   Yeast was shortlisted Best New Restaurant in the Time Out KL Food Awards 2013. Our food awards are 100% voted for by the people of KL. This way, we guarantee that popularity and consistent performance are rewarded.

Book online
Show more

Best places for dessert

Dew
Restaurants

Dew

Telawi’s new kid on the block is a promising one. Opened by Jaslyn Rangson right next to her namesake bakery/café, this new patisserie/florist marks how far Bangsar’s favourite baker has come since Jaslyn Cakes opened in 2014. While the neighbouring cake shop exudes a homely vibe with a counter packed with honest-to-goodness cakes and pastries, Dew is shiny, elegant and pretty in more ways than one. The charm starts at the entrance, which is dotted with vases in shades of robin egg blue housing pretty flowers and verdant plants for sale by O Flwr, a well-known florist among KL’s socialites. Stop and smell the roses, and maybe bring back a box of flowers for a loved one. Once you’re done admiring the crimson petals, step into the patisserie and you’ll see a glass-topped counter filled with rows of enticing, shiny tarts. Two distinctive speckle-tiled tables in the small space comfortably seat a group of three each, while an emerald-hued table in the corner (a popular spot that gets nabbed fast) accommodates slightly more. There’s no need to be crestfallen if you can’t spot empty tables inside – Dew’s florist section at the entrance also doubles as outdoor seating. Pretty tarts amidst pretty florals, what’s not to like? Tart-wise, it’s hard not to go for the whole lot and have a happy tart party, but we say go for the Basil-Lime Tart and 100% Chocolate Cake. Each pastry is lovely and is delicately plated with an obvious sense of craft by Jaslyn and co. Priced in the RM17-24 ra

Cocodash by Cocoraw
Restaurants

Cocodash by Cocoraw

Run by Michael Woo and Lee See Pin, Cocoraw is an online store that sells a variety of nama-style chocolates made with a Malaysian twist. At this pop-up store (which is expected to open until October 2018) you'll find a range are flavours that include salted gula Melaka, Ipoh White Coffee, teh tarik, Gin & Limau Nipis (chocolate made with gin and lime) and The Alcoholic Anon (chocolate made with sweet rum). Also worth trying is their hot or iced chocolate drink, which is made using chocolate sourced from different parts of the world. 

Joy St
Restaurants

Joy St

Owned by Brian Jeevan and Tan Kuan Lian, a former engineer and medical student respectively who churned their love of desserts into a full-time vocation, this quaint gelateria boasts cute interiors, which carry over onto the menu. With more than 18 intriguing flavours like sticky date, mango lime sorbet, Biscoff cookie and even red bean pandan, you’ll have a hard time deciding which one to choose. The menu changes every three weeks, so there’s never a dull ice cream moment. We suggest going for their best sellers – the lychee watermelon sorbet and Earl Grey are all-round crowd pleasers, while those looking for more esoteric flavours can try out the Avocado Mango and Berry Cheesecake. Want something a bit more substantial? Get the waffles with your gelato.

Inside Scoop
Restaurants

Inside Scoop

Bangsar’s unofficial ‘happy place’ churns out some of the best ice cream in the city. Owner and in-house ice cream churner Shiew Li uses gelato techniques to achieve full-bodied consistency and concentration of flavour, best sampled in a scoop of the Valrhona chocolate, durian or the naturally green pistachio. Whether you have your ice cream on a freshly baked waffle cone or slightly melted on a warm, buttery waffle, Inside Scoop provides momentary joy for the restless and the overworked.Inside Scoop has another outlet in Damansara Jaya. 

Users say
5 out of 5 stars
Jaslyn Cakes
Restaurants

Jaslyn Cakes

You may have stumbled upon Instagram photos of the decadent sweet rolls, pastries, cookies, chocolate truffles and cakes by Jaslyn (@jaslynr), who used to supply to Wondermama Restaurant.

Morelli's Gelato
Restaurants

Morelli's Gelato

For a sundae that meets your childhood aspirations, Morelli’s Gelato fits the bill with gelatos that are made from scratch daily. Their sundaes are placed in the -15C blast freezer after every layer is added to ensure it retains its shape and temperature. The Berry Pavlova, a concoction of wildberry sorbet, raspberry yoghurt, soft vanilla gelato with raspberry coulis, meringues and seasonal berries, is one that stands out. Adults can go for Baileys, a satisfying sundae made from hazelnut gelato and chocolate sauce, served with a single shot of Bailey’s liqueur in a chocolate cup.

Om Shakti Chelo’s Appam Stall
Restaurants

Om Shakti Chelo’s Appam Stall

This modest 26-year-old stall in Bangsar churns out appam so good you’ll wonder why it hasn’t joined the ranks of Antipodean and Yeast at weekend brunch time. While you can opt for plain appam with coconut milk, we go weak for the brown sugar variety; coconut milk and brown sugar are liberally applied onto appam batter and swirled in a pan so the edges remain fluffy while the sides are brittle. The sugar is intentionally left in chunks, so every bite hits you with a burst of caramel-coconut goodness.

Best places for coffee

DR.Inc
Restaurants

DR.Inc

At DR.Inc, the coffee menu is devised by barista Neil Liew. A highlight on the menu is the Presso Bomb featuring a shot of espresso in Malacca-sourced ice cream soda.

VCR Bangsar
Restaurants

VCR Bangsar

One of KL's most good-looking cafés has branched out into Bangsar's Telawi area, bringing with it the familiar industrial-chic aesthetic that made the Pudu outlet such a hit. The single-origin coffee here is just as good, and the menu is a brunch-lover's dream that includes French toast, big breakfast sets, Turkish-style eggs and avocado toast. The cakes are another main draw, with the most indulgent being The King Cake, banana cake layered with peanut butter frosting, banana slices and chocolate.

Pulp
Restaurants

Pulp

Get serious in a cupping room where you learn from baristas who work their gear with topflight technique. Or marvel at the mementos of the warehouse over a Blue Batak brew.

Thirdwave
Restaurants

Thirdwave

The coffee enthusiasts at Thirdwave are so serious about their java they established a special coffee counter just to educate you about hand-brewed coffee. Think of it as a caffeinated bar: You can sit on the high stools and sip on a cold brew but minus the cheesy pick-up lines. Thirdwave gets beans from a variety of sources including Three Little Birds, and the resulting brew is a full-bodied coffee that pairs well with the upside-down starfruit cake, the root beer float cupcake, and – if you can handle it – the papaya cheesecake. Here’s a laidback café that manages to avoid the rustic wood/metal decor of its peers.

Café Atas 59
Restaurants

Café Atas 59

What was previously Lorem Ipsum is now Café Atas59. The name change comes with a change in management; but fret not, many of the things we loved about Lorem Ipsum is retained – like the good coffee, art jam sessions and chilled-out vibe. For those unaware of Lorem Ipsum’s existence previously, the space is hidden above Drs. Chai & Partners Dental Surgeons along Jalan Bangkung. Finding it can be tough as there’s no signboard pointing to the café; instead, just look for a canvas painting of a person’s arm holding a cup of coffee leaning against the entrance of the staircase. Café Atas59 ticks all the boxes when it comes to the typical hipster café design – high exposed ceilings, and bare concrete floor and walls. (Despite that, Café Atas59 manages to pull it off without coming across as pretentious or unoriginal.) Canvas paintings by art jam participants give the place pops of colours, and the airiness and spaciousness make the café an ideal place to work. Aside from the usual coffee options, Café Atas59 also offers a range of imported craft beers. At the time of writing craft beers such as Hawkers Pale Ale and Two Birds Golden Ale were available, but the guys behind the café plan to change the selection regularly. Food-wise, there are decent choices for pastries and cakes; go for the baked cheese cake or key lime tart if you’re in the mood for dessert. Apart from that, the menu also includes all-day breakfasts, sandwiches and dessert pancakes. If you want to explore your a

OJO Coffee
Restaurants

OJO Coffee

Featuring a creative blend of drinks, OJO (pronounced ‘Oh Joe’) is definitely not for the coffee purist. From café Horchata, java chip latte to an intriguing Pina Colada Bubble Gum coffee, OJO also has the usual mix of juices, lattes and ice blended drinks. Go for the jackfruit cream cake or a slice of peanut butter Valrhona chocolate. We like the abundance of electrical sockets in OJO, no doubt designed for the hordes of laptop-toting freelancers around town.

Comments

0 comments