Places to vine and dine
in Kuala Lumpur
KAFETEIN 1966, Hotel Malaya, Jalan Hang Lekir, KL (Tel: 03-2072 7722). Business Hrs: Daily (9am-9pm). Decorated in the style of old Chinese coffee shops with marble tables and wooden chairs. The walls are decorated with black and white photo reproductions of Chinatown in the early days. Its menu is suitable for breakfast, lunch, tea or dinner. Besides the Nyonya favourites, Western snacks are also available. There is a Buffet Lunch with dishes changed on a daily basis.
FUN TAIPEI TEACAFE, 63, Ground Floor, Changkat Thambi Dollah, Off Jalan Pudu (behind Berjaya Times Square), KL (Tel: 03-2142 2327). Business Hrs: Daily (10am-midnight). Non-Halal. Serves a variety of snacks and light meals famous in Taiwan originating from the 36 provinces in China. These are complemented by over 100 types of beverages. A Western menu is also available.
THE MUSTARD TREE, G08B Ground Floor, AmpWalk, 218 Jalan Ampang, KL (Tel: 03-2171 2202). Business Hrs: Mon-Sat (11.30am-11pm). Closed on Sunday and Public Holidays. Mustard is freely used in some of the restaurant’s recipes while some of the dishes have Oriental and Western influences. Besides mustard, the outlet’s mix of 26 spices is used in the dishes as well. Desserts are made in-house with the Chocolate Walnut Brownie as the firm favourite. The interior of the outlet is decorated to resemble a home ambience although it is styled like a fine-dining outfit with its fine table setting and elegant furniture.
SLICES AND SPICES, 11-1 Jalan PJU 8/5F, Perdana Business Centre, Bandar Damansara Perdana, PJ (Tel: 03-7728 1184). Business Hrs: Mon-Thurs (10.30am-9pm); Fri & Sat (10.30am-10pm); Sunday (11am-7pm). A cosy ambience with warm-coloured décor, dim lighting and huge prints depicting cake-making processes. Rolling pins are used as decorations on the wall, attached to the menus and with a huge replica sticking out at the entrance. Rows of cakes in beautiful colours are displayed in two chillers, with about 10 cakes displayed daily. There is a wide array of pies, quiches and hot dishes. The signature cake is Chocolate Heaven.
SOHO SPICE BAR & RESTAURANT, 9 Jalan Setiapuspa, Medan Damansara, KL (Tel: 03-2092 2999). Business Hrs: Mon-Fri (11.30am-midnight); Sat-Sun (9.30am-1am). Pork-free. Serves Asian and Western dishes complemented by a variety of unique Chinese teas like ti kuan yin, Baby Rose Tea and Dragon Ball Tea. The outlet also serves Western and Asian breakfast on weekends, Oriental and Western Set Lunch on weekdays and Weekender Roasts on the weekends.
KARL’S BEISL, Bangsar Puteri Condo, 41 Jalan Medang Serai, Bukit Bandaraya, KL (Tel: 03-2095 8713). Business Hrs: Tues-Sun (11am-10.30pm). Closed on Monday. Non-Halal. The outlet is furnished with the owners’ personal collection of furniture from his travels around the world. The menu is themed “East Meet West” highlighting Austrian, German, Italian and Asian food. Food is cooked home-styled and diners are encouraged to enjoy their meal the way they would at home. A Karl Beisl entry pass, recognised by the security guards, is available from the outlet so diners can enter the premises easily.
NAWAB AUTHENTIC MOGHUL RESTAURANT, Lot No. 2, Chulan Square, Jalan Raja Chulan, KL (Tel: 03-2143 2828). Business Hrs: Daily, lunch (11am-3pm); dinner (6.30pm-11pm). Specialises in Mogul cuisine, which is from Northern India with Persian Influence. The cuisine uses various spices while breads come plain, with butter, garlic or cheese served in a Roti Basket. There are several rice dishes with house speciality Mutton Briyani. The restaurant has outlets around the world, particularly India and the Middle East.
BANGLES TANDOORI RESTAURANT, 270 Jalan Ampang, KL (Tel: 4252 4100/4300). Business Hrs: Daily, lunch (10.30am-2.30pm); dinner (6.30pm-10.30pm). Halal. After 30 years of dishing up delectable North Indian cuisine the outlet has succeeded in maintaining the quality of its famous Hyderabadi Dum Biryani, its top-selling dish. The Chicken Biryani is served in a silver bowl covered with foil and sealed with dough. Only basmati rice is used for the biryani.
RESTAURANT KELUARGA SATE KL, 3G, Jalan Wawasan 2/1, Bandar Baru Ampang, Ampang (Tel: 03-4280 6521). Business Hrs: Daily (10am-midnight). The outlet specialises in various types of satay such as chicken (minus chicken skin), beef, lamb, and salmon as well as innovative items, Satay Roll and Burger Satay. The sauce accompanying the satay is thick and flavoursome minus the usual thick layer of oil. Burger Satay comes with cheddar cheese and a choice of peanut, tomato or chilli sauce. It adopts an open-concept kitchen. Besides satay various other Malaysian favourites like Mee Bandung and Nasi Lemak are also available. Delivery service with a service charge of RM2 for Ampang residents is available.
PLAZA COURT CHINESE RESTAURANT, The Plaza Hotel, 2nd Floor, Jalan Raja Laut, KL (Tel: 03-2692 0535). Business Hrs: Mon-Sat, lunch (noon-2.30pm); dinner (6pm-9pm). Closed on Sunday. Non-Halal. Serves huge food portions with little or no trade-off in ambience or service quality. The menu features an interesting selection such as dishes that use pumpkin, spinach, fish and prawn pastes, fresh lily buds, macadamia nuts pine mushrooms and lotus seeds tomatoes. It is known for its special choy sum drink, made with pineapples and a little sugar. Prices are reasonable and the value-for-money set menus for lunch and dinner are worth trying out. Diners are encouraged to make requests for dishes not featured from the menu.
XIAO FEI YANG RESTAURANT, 18 Lorong Thambi Dua, Off Jalan Pudum KL (Tel: 03-2142 6789/012-211 0562). Business Hrs: Daily, lunch (11am-3pm); dinner (6pm-10.30pm). Non-Halal. The outlet is modelled after a famous chain of restaurants in China serving delicious steamboats and authentic North-Eastern Chinese cuisine. The selling point is the herbal broth and the spicy soup specially concocted for the steamboats. The soup uses over 60 varieties of pure Chinese herbs. The menu boasts unusual creations such as the handmade tapioca noodles, Village Style Flower Ham from China, Goat’s Testicles, Cow’s Penis, Beef Tendons, Pig’s Intestines, Kidneys and Blood Cake.
MAREDO’S STEAKHOUSE, Crown Regency Service Apartments, 12, 2nd Position of Ground Floor, Jalan P. Ramlee, KL (Tel: 03-2162 8268). Business Hrs: Mon-Sun (11am-midnight). The outlet is based on a chain of popular steakhouses in South America. It is the first and only Argentine conceptualised steakhouse in Malaysia. Argentine steaks are more flavourful compared to Tex-Mex's and a lot more ingredients go into them. The beef comes chilled from the cattle in the Pampas in Argentina, sent to a Muslim slaughterhouse. It adopts an open concept and casual dining experience, and boasts an elaborate menu. Although Maredo’s has a good selection of steaks, it also serves chicken and fish. Its two highly recommended desserts are the El Helado y el Chocolate and the Chocolate Ganache and Vanilla Ice-cream.
BARNEY’S CAFE, 102 Jalan Toman 5, Kemayan Square, Seremban, NS (Tel: 06-763 8679). Business Hrs: Tues-Sun (noon-10pm). Closed on Monday. Barney’s is styled after a typical Californian eatery, with a cosy and pleasant ambience. It serves mainly Western food with a little bit of Italian thrown In like pizzas and pastas. Its red meats and fish used are bought from the local market daily for freshness.
FANDANGO'S, 22-3 Jalan 25/70A, Desa Sri Hartamas, KL (Tel: 03-2300 1178). Business Hrs: Daily (11am-2am). Pork-free. Boasts food served in large portions, many of which are hot favourites among the Mexicans. Its selection of cocktails like the Passion Fruit Margarita and Sombreco is excellent. Impressive hot drinks include Toffee Caramel Flan and Banana Tacos for dessert.
JUST PASTA, 48G Jalan USJ 10/1B, UEP Subang Jaya (Tel: 03-5636 6700). Business Hrs: Daily (11am-11pm). Offers a Sunday Buffet from noon to 4pm highlighting all kinds of pasta dishes, some of which have been Malaysianised. Various side dishes complement the main courses. The main dishes selections are rotated on every Sunday.
PONDOK GURAME RESTAURANT SDN BHD, 924 & 926 Jalan P. Ramlee, KL (Tel: 03-2713 1929). Business Hrs: Daily, lunch (noon-3pm); dinner (6pm-10pm). Gourami is a tropical freshwater fish that is popular among Indonesians. The fish is known for its sweet and meaty flesh and is reared in Indonesia for local consumption as well as export. The restaurant is named after the fish and “pondok” means “hut”. The outlet specialises in gourami dishes with supply of the fish stored in tanks near the kitchen and miniature ponds outside the main entrance. Most of the recipes are from the owner's personal collection, inherited them from the grandmother. Pondok Gurame is a household name in Singapore, giving diners the real taste of Indonesia with cooks from different parts of Sumatra employed.
BANGSAR SEAFOOD GARDEN RESTAURANT, One Bangsar, 63 Jalan Ara, Bangsar Baru, KL (Tel: 03-2282 2555). Business Hrs: Daily, lunch (noon-2.30pm); dinner (6pm-10.30pm). The outlet is fashioned to complement the lawn at One Bangsar with towering bamboo and green plants emphasising the garden concept. Its mainstays are the Nyonya and Malay influenced dishes as well as Chinese flavours. There's a cosy tea corner that looks out to the garden and offers a range of soothing Chinese tea. Tanks filled with live fish and shellfish deck a length of the dining area, assuring diners of the freshness of seafood here. The outlet seats 250 people, with several private rooms. Offers banquet facilities for weddings, corporate events, birthdays, seminars and anniversaries.
KIM’S KOREAN FOOD HOUSE@Asia Cafe, Jalan SS15/8, SS15 Subang Jaya. The outlet serves a range of 'guksu' (noodles), 'bob' (rice), set menu and side dishes. Its dishes are priced according to its customers with different income groups. There are many favourite dishes with its 'mandoo' (dumpling) selling like hot cakes daily. Most of the dishes uses 'kim chi' (preserved cabbage) known for its natural goodness and can help in slimming.
AL NAFOURAH RESTAURANT, Le Meridian Kuala Lumpur, 2 Jalan Stesen Sentral, Kuala Lumpur Sentral, KL (Tel: 03-2263 7888). Business Hrs: Daily, lunch (11am–2pm); dinner (5pm–1am). The restaurant is about Middle Eastern dishes that have a strong Lebanese influence. Dates and citrus fruits are some of the popular ingredients used in the cuisine. Its High Tea concept is like that practised in the Middle East where guests enjoy freshly brewed Arabian coffee and sweets after the main meals. The High Tea is not complete without having the dates syrup, or the brewed tea that can be flavoured with fresh herbs like mint or sweet basil, or spices like saffron and cinnamon, to wash down a richly spice-infused meal. While the main dining area is in the banquet hall, the lounge-like area is for guests to relax and enjoy their drinks and snacks in.
BIEN SUR RESTAURANT AND BAR, 1A Jalan Gelenggang, Damansara Heights, KL (Tel: 03-2095 3363). Business Hrs: Mon-Sat, lunch (11.45am-2.30pm); dinner (6.45pm-10.30pm). Serves light and casual-styled French food amidst a laid-back ambience. The fare depicts the flavours of the southern region. The menu boasts an interesting selection comprising rice dishes as well as noodles and soups. Desserts are plenty with the pancake being a hot favourite.
VIETNAM KITCHEN RESTAURANTS, Lot L2-26-01, Level 2, New Wing, Cheras Leisure Mall, Jalan Manis 6, Taman Segar, cheras, KL (Tel: 03-9130 9530). Business Hrs: Daily (11am-9.45pm). Sister outlets in USJ9, Citrus Park Plaza OUG, 1 Utama and Sungei Wang Plaza. The outlet has a stylish Vietnamese décor and it serves Vietnamese food loaded with vegetables, served raw and shredded with thin rice noodles or rice papers for which Vietnam is famous. Most of its major ingredients are specially flown in from Vietnam to ensure the authentic taste, like the rice noodles, rice papers, fish sauce, tamarind sauce, caramel sauce and coconut milk. It boasts many 'must-try' dishes.
Copied at 11 April 2006