The coolest cafes in Kuala Lumpur examined blend by blend, bean by bean and photo by photo. These are THE best cafes in KL.
Forget about Melbourne and Sacramento; Kuala Lumpur’s coffee culture beats the lot. The scene is booming with cafes offering an ever expanding landscape of imported aromatic beans, state-of- the-art machinery, cool interiors and gorgeous brews. In response, KL’s coffee lovers and hipsters alike have taken to Instagram in their millions to showcase their favourites. Here we present you with the 13 best, most instagrammable cafes in Kuala Lumpur.
This super cool cafe in Petaling Street is a cosy indie cafe that looks as you’d expect on the inside with plants in metal pots and chalkboards doodled full of art. But what you really need to pay attention to is the 3D coffee art that adorns the top of almost every cup of coffee, mostly cats and the odd rendition of Totoro (we’re sure that Hayao Miyazaki is a big fan).
Cafè Crema can be found in a small space inside Plaza Mont Kiara. The cafe has a great selection of beans from Asian producers in Singapore and Malaysia and also Brazilian and African producers. This is a cafe for the true coffee lover. Inside you’ll find a record player playing exclusively soul, antique grinders and old typewriters sitting atop antique wood and an open approach to coffee making with baristas always on hand to teach those curious enough to ask all about their art. If that’s not enough, perhaps the bright yellow cups with curvy gentleman moustaches will seal the deal?
This one doesn’t hold true to the conventional “café” theme but it’s aesthetic sure does. Inside a large space in Jalan Ampang, you’ll find a cute cafe that looks a lot like a library (with its shelves filled with books) and big comfortable seating giving it an exceptionally laid back atmosphere. The menu, however, is what earns it the title of “bar”. You’ll find—alongside an extensive list of coffee, cocktails and a food menu that stretches from waffles to pasta.
This is quite possibly one of the most inventive cafes on the list. You’ll find it in Solaris Mont Kiara, and once inside you’ll be confronted with a small, stylish and exceptionally calm interior. Some of their most intriguing concoctions are the Espresso Bomb and the Reverse Coffee—an ice ball of espresso in a glass which comes accompanied by a glass of hot frothy milk which you pour over the coffee to melt. They have great food too.
Namoo is a great Korean cafe that serves Korean food alongside coffee and desserts. Namoo means “tree” in Korean and so in fitting with the theme, you’ll note that the entire place is covered with wooden furniture. This is a KL cafe for those that enjoy a bit of quirkiness in their hang out place. Try the delicious Namoo Rice Beef Burger (beef burger with rice patties) and the Sweet Potato Cake for dessert.
This cafe knows how to bend the rules with its odd (but delicious) selection of brews. The Presso Bomb, for example, is a shot of espresso submerged in a tall glass of ice cream soda, while the Che Guevara, is an intense espresso poured over ice with lemon and sugar. Better still, all of the espresso at Dr.Inc is made with a dark (strong) Italian roast.
Three Little Birds is located in a secluded little area in Sentul surrounded by lush greenery, and unlike most cafes, in KL this one is equipped with a Steampunk, a piece of state-of-the-art machinery that delivers the utmost accuracy and consistency with filtered coffee. One for those that like a little control over their coffee.
Standing Theory stands out in the crowd as a café dedicated to its search for the perfect coffee. The owners are always looking out for new house beans, taking on special single origin beans from Panama, alongside blends of Brazilian and Columbian beans. If you’re there in the evening, take a look at their ever-evolving food menu, which amongst other things, includes a decadent take on a British classic—Beer and Sausage on Mash—that’s simply delicious.
LOKL (say “local”) is a vintage-inspired cafe, which serves a good selection of coffee—cappuccinos and espressos as well as more local hand-filtered blends served with condensed milk—and fusion food. Its small cosy interior is perfectly suited to relaxing evening coffee breaks.
How could we not include a cafe that offers a cup of ‘kopi’ (coffee) to grumpy passersby? This lovely little cafe oozes charm, from the bicycles hanging on the walls to the wheels that are used as ceiling lights. If you so happen to be one of the aforementioned grumpy cyclists, you’ll note that the cafe even provides a shower for cyclists to freshen up before diving into their coffees!
Seven Cups is a beautiful, relaxed slice of modernism within Empire Damansara. The aesthetic inside is pretty—minimalist with nods to Japanese practicality, full of blonde wood and long spacious tables that are perfect for laptops. Those inside sips expertly mixed coffee—sourced from Singapore, Nicaragua and El Salvador—to a soundtrack of ethereal pop remixes. This is modern coffee at its best.
Coffee Stain is as visually appealing as it is tasty. After ordering your coffee, you can ask the barista to make whatever bit of coffee art that you want. If you’re drinking hot chocolate, then you can also choose 3D art.
This visually stunning café is perched on Jalan Galloway inside a remodelled building. There are several floors to take advantage of, but the first floor is our favourite. There you can enjoy a view from the windows while seated in a cute collection of rattan-chairs that call to mind a summer day in the garden more than a coffee shop. VCR uses solely single origin coffees, alongside chocolates and cakes.
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