Eat your way around Asia: Kuala Lumpur

Time Out KL's guide to the best spots in the Malaysian metropolis

As Malaysia’s capital city, in KL we’re blessed with a food scene that’s as diverse as the country itself.

Cheap eat

Time Out KL - Village Park nasi lemak

The fried chicken at Village Park is so consistently crunchy and full of flavour that repeat visits are mandatory. While the crispy chicken may be its crowning glory, Village Park is a laudable Malaysian restaurant at heart, with a number of delectable dishes coming from a kitchen that really cares about food. Its rendition of Malaysia’s national dish nasi lemak (pictured above) – a fragrant rice dish cooked with coconut milk – is still one of the best. The rice is so expertly prepared that each coconut-y grain stands perfectly distinct from the others in a snow-white mound that gives way with the barest nudge of a spoon. It’s accompanied by dried anchovies, peanuts, cucumber and blood-red sambal characterised by a tease of sweetness and a slow, creeping burn.
Meal for two, 25MYR.

INSIDER TIP Expect it to be a squeeze and if you’re not a fan of excruciatingly long queues, avoid lunch times.

Casual dining

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Limapulo’s retro interior, kitted out with a collection of old typewriters, vintage posters, rusty metal chairs and more charming props makes it worth a visit for its Instagram value alone. But beyond design, what’s really impressive here is the Peranakan (or nonya) cuisine – a distinctive cooking style that fuses Malay and Chinese cultures. Limapulo’s cook and proprietor Uncle John has created a menu of family-guarded recipes.
Meal for two, 40MYR.

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ORDER THIS The signature ayam berempah (pictured above) is a harmonious blend between a meaty rendang and a curry. Crispy chicken is authoritatively flavoured with herbs, chilli and a smidgen of edible wild flower, bunga kantan.

Fine dining

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Despite the modern setting and kitchen techniques employed at Dewakan, there’s something so comfortingly homely about the food. Chef Darren Teoh is dedicated to championing local produce – some of which is overlooked in the local dining scene. Teoh takes an alchemist’s approach to handling food; pickling, curing and smoking in house. Common Malay ingredients are given new potential and flavours, unrestricted by traditions. You won’t find any à la carte options here, just five- and ten-course tasting menus.
Meal for two from 180MYR.

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EAT THIS Smoked pike conger, served on a silky soft egg custard with fermented long bean relish, roasted okra and clam foam.
  • 4 out of 5 stars
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