What is Kuala Lumpur’s dining scene like?

Answers from Our Experts (1)

Emma Johnston

Though we may not boast the same number of Michelin stars as our southerly neighbour Singapore, in many ways Malaysia’s dining scene simply cannot be equalled. As the capital city, Kuala Lumpur brings together many different threads of the country’s food culture, so it’s the perfect place to try a little bit of everything.

You can’t stay in KL and not try the local street food – even hotel and restaurant approximations of the classic hawker staples are better than nothing. So many different cuisines are represented on the streets of KL – Malay, Indian and Chinese, as well as Thai influences, Portuguese spices, and the myriad flavours from Sabah and Sarawak. The best place to start would be a local night market (pasar malam, in Malay) where you’ll find a huge variety of local dishes and snacks.

KL is also the location of a burgeoning café culture, with independent coffee shops and bakeries opening all over the city. And fine dining is surprisingly vibrant here, with all the major hotels represented and a growing number of independent restaurants taking on the degustation challenge.

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