Chinatown Restaurants

Where and What to Eat in Chinatown

Chinatown is practically filled with Chinese restaurants and hawker stalls selling all sorts of delicacies from steamed buns to seafood. Almost everywhere you look, a Chinese restaurant greets your eyes, the glorious smells wafting from its kitchen beckoning you to come inside and sample what’s cooking. Chinatown is also a popular place for ‘daging salai’ or smoked meat; people have been known to come here just to stock up on them or bring them home as gifts.

But those are not the only things you can find here; there are many more popular delicacies that are unique to Chinatown and can’t be found anywhere else in the city. What’s best about these places is that they are all open until late at night, well into the wee hours of the morning. Finding a worthwhile place to eat at in Chinatown is no easy feat, as every corner, street and lane is teemed with hawker stalls and restaurants, but the ones that are listed below are the pick of the crop and come highly recommended (for Muslims, please note that most of the Chinese restaurants and stalls here sell non-Halal food, so be sure to ask first before ordering


Top 10 Restaurants in Chinatown Top 10 Restaurants in Kuala Lumpur Chinatown

Chinatown is full of sights, sounds and smells that will tantalise your taste buds - forget about searching its narrow streets for the best places to eat, and simply check out our list of favourites. Read More...

 
Precious Old China Precious Old China

Peranakan dishes galore at the quaint (but definitely full of charm) Precious Old China. Affordable and delectable, guests are also treated to a feast for the eyes, thanks to its wide collection of antiques and art pieces. Read More...

Old China Cafe Old China Cafe

An institution in Kuala Lumpur, the Old China Cafe is one of the oldest restaurants in the city, serving delectable Peranakan cuisine while retaining its decor and charm. Read More...

 
Peter Hoe Beyond

Looking very much like an olden-day Chinese speakeasy, Peter Hoe Beyond is a retail store, boutique and café combo along Jalan Tun HS Lee that is popular for its colourful, intricate housewares, jewellery and crafts. Read More...

 

More Restaurants in Chinatown

Assam Laksa Stall

Served with shredded cucumber and thick mackerel chunks, the assam laksa in Petaling Street is quite legendary, at once sweet, sour and spicy. The stalls selling this dish at Madras Lane have been in the business for more than 30 years, and has just the right balance of flavours to make their assam laksa’s popularity last throughout the decades.

Opening Hours: Differ from stall to stall – some are open in the morning and some only open in the afternoon, and some are closed on certain days of the week.
Location: Madras Lane, near the entrance of Petaling Street wet market.
Cuisine: Assam laksa

Café Café

Café Café is one of the most surprising entries in Kuala Lumpur’s list of best restaurants. A French-Italian fine dining restaurant, Café Café is no stranger to accolades and was nominated as the Best Continental Restaurant and Best Independent Restaurant in the 2010 Time Out KL Food Awards. Highly recommended, the grandiose yet unpretentious Café Café practically transports you to Paris. Perfect for couples, the romantic interior has candlelit tables, French background music, chandeliers, and twinkling crystal decorations. Service, however, could be better and the restaurant is starting to look a little run down but the food more than makes up for it. Read More...

Opening Hours: 18:00 – 24:00
Address: 175, Jalan Maharajalela, Kuala Lumpur
Tel: +603 2145 8141

China Town Seng Kee Restaurant

Famous for their claypot lou shu fan (rat-tail noodles) and siew yuk (BBQ pork) noodles, China Town Seng Kee Restaurant serves delicious Cantonese dishes, some of which only available at night.

Opening Hours: Daily, 07:00 – 04:00
Location: opposite Bangunan Ka Yin Fui Kon & The Shanghai Bookstore
Address: 52 Jalan Sultan
Tel: (603) 2072 5950
Cuisine: Cantonese, claypot lou shu fan, siew yuk noodles

Hong Kong Mee

Hong Kong Mee

Despite its hidden location behind a wet market, Hong Kong Mee enjoys a brisk business due to its delicious claypot noodles. Its specialty, however, is the wok chai mee, which is noodles served in a tiny black wok atop a mini burner, ensuring that the noodles stay hot.

Opening Hours: Daily, 09:00 – 15:00
Location: near Jalan Tun H. S. Lee, behind the wet market near Chinatown Pavillion
Address: 9 Lorong Drury, Jalan Bandar
Tel: (603) 2078 9296
Cuisine: Claypot noodles, wok chai noodles

Jalan Hang Lekir Beef Noodles

Like most hawker stalls around this area, this beef noodle stall has been around for years. Offering an inexpensive and fulfilling meal, this stall uses flat rice noodles instead of egg noodles, tossed with oil and light soy sauce instead of dark soy sauce, creating a simple yet tasty treat.

Opening Hours: Daily, 20:00 – 03:00
Address: Along Jalan Hang Lekir, Kuala Lumpur (next to Hong Leong Bank)
Cuisine: Beef noodles

Maybank Tong Sui

If you’re in the mood for some good, old homemade tong sui (porridge), then look no further than the stall situated at the corner of Jalan Panggung and Jalan Sultan. Offering green bean porridge, hak loh mai (black glutinous rice porridge), noodles and yong tau foo, this stall has been in operation for more than 20 years. These cheap treats come with a rich taste, as the stalls’ many customers would testify to.

Opening Hours: Daily, 14:00 – 22:00
Location: Corner of Jalan Panggong and Jalan Sultan (right outside Maybank, hence the name)
Cuisine: Tong sui (green bean porridge & black glutinous rice porridge)

Nam Heong Hainanese Chicken Rice

Well-known for its Hainanese Chicken Rice, sworn by some to be the best in town, Nam Heong Chicken Rice’s main dish is reportedly so good that some customers refuse to have their chicken rice anywhere else but here. Aside from chicken rice, they are also well-known for their fook chow fishball soup and roast pork.

Opening Hours: Daily, 10:00 – late
Location: opposite 5 Element Hotel and down the road from Swiss-Inn Hotel
Address: 56 Jalan Sultan
Tel: (603) 2078 5879
Cuisine: Hainanese chicken rice, roast pork, fook chow fishball soup

Old China Cafe

Some of the older parts of Kuala Lumpur are decaying little by little, but some institutions still stand strong to remind us of the character it once held. A good example of these is the Old China Cafe, a cafe serving delectable Peranakan dishes, slightly off the beaten track in Chinatown. Previously the premise of the guild hall of Selangor and Federal Territory Laundry Association, the cafe is housed in a heritage pre-war shop house dating back to the early 1900s. The cafe retains its quiet charm, with most of its original furnishings still gracing the interior. Expect to find old Chinese furniture such as marble-topped tables at least 100 years old, and Wild-West-like wooden saloon doors that flap as you push them to enter. Little antique trinkets line the shelves for sale for those who would like a piece of history. Read More...

Opening Hours: 11:00 till late
Address: No. 11, Jalan Balai Polis, Kuala Lumpur
Tel: +6 03 2072 5915
How to get there: Old China Cafe is just a walk from the nearest LRT Station, Pasar Seni. From the station, alight east to Jalan Sultan towards Jalan Hang Kasturi and turn right onto Jalan Panggong. Turn left onto Lorong Panggung, and the cafe will be on your left.

Peter Hoe Beyond

Peter Hoe Beyond is a store along Jalan Tun HS Lee with a lovely collection of homeware, clothes and souvenirs. The 8,600sqft warehouse-sized shop is divided into three colourful sections: a retail store, boutique and café. Fusing Asian and modern style, some of the best things to buy here include colourful, woven rattan baskets and place mats in bold colours and designs as well as flowery shirts, batik print pareos and scarves. Read More...

Opening Hours: 10:00 – 19:00
Address: No. 145, Jalan Tun HS Lee, Kuala Lumpur
Tel: +603 2026 9788

Portuguese Grilled Fish

Portuguese Grilled Fish

A stall located in the alleyway in front of Hong Leong Bank serves a unique culinary experience: charcoal-grilled fish, Portuguese style. The fish is smeared all over with their specially-made chilli sauce and wrapped in aluminium foil, before grilled to perfection. Once the fish is cooked, the aroma that rises as you peel back the aluminium foil is quite out of this world.

Opening Hours: Daily, 17:00 – 23:00; closed on Mondays
Location: On Jalan Hang Lekir, in the alleyway in front of Hong Leong Bank
Cuisine: Spicy grilled fish wrapped in aluminium foil, Portuguese style

Precious Old China

Tucked away in the cultural bazaar Central Market is Precious Old China, sister restaurant to the renowned Old China Cafe. Sporting a slightly grander interior than the Chinatown outlet, the restaurant maintains the same hospitality and menu, but keeps it pork-free to entice more visitors, especially the Muslim crowd (Malaysia is an Islamic country). Situated in the mezzanine floor, the restaurant is right before the food court, so you can’t miss it after you’ve climbed the stairs at the main entrance. Expansive and filled with art and antique pieces such as 19th century Shanxi medicine cabinets and paintings of the Chinese opera singers, the ambiance is easy-going, yet full of charm. The restaurant is divided into three sections – a bar, and two separate dining areas. Read More...

Opening Hours: 11:00 – 23:00
Address: Lot M2, Central Market, Jalan Hang Kasturi, Kuala Lumpur
Tel: +6 03 2273 7372

Restoran Hung Kee

Restoran Hung Kee

Restoran Hung Kee first started out in the mid-60s serving wan tan mee (Hokkien noodles in black soya sauce with dumplings). Over the years it has expanded to include two shop lots along Jalan Loke Yew in KL (near the pedestrian bridge): the first shop lot is air conditioned while the second is not. The restaurant gets rather busy, especially at lunchtime, so arrive early to snag a table in the air con section. Parking in the area can be difficult but as with most local fare in the city, you cannot find great, authentic cuisine in KL without some minor difficulties. Most people park their cars in the side streets and walk the short distance to the shop. Read More...

Opening Hours: 07:00 – 22:00
Address: 28-5 and 28-6 Jalan Loke Yew, Pudu, Kuala Lumpur

Restoran Kim Lian Kee

Restoran Kim Lian Kee bills itself as the birth place of hokien mee in KL. Set at the junction in the centre of Petaling Street (beside Coffee Bean & Tea Leaf), it is a corner lot restaurant that is over 100 years old. Locals say it is one of the best (if not the best) hokkien mee joints in the city. Although Restoran Kim Lian Kee’s menu is fairly extensive and includes typical tai chow (dishes) to be eaten with rice, it is the fat yellow hokkien mee noodles stir-fried and doused in delicious and thick soy sauce gravy that draws in the crowd. Read More...

Opening Hours: Daily, 07:00 – 16:00 (chee cheong fun), 17:00 – 05:00 (Hokkien fried noodles). Closed on Wednesdays.
Location: at the corner where Petaling Street meets Jalan Hang Lekir – usually opposite a Longan drink stall – you can’t miss its big red signboard saying ‘Restoran Kim Lean Kee’
Address: 49-51, Jalan Petaling, 55100 Kuala Lumpur
Tel: +603 2032 4984
Cuisine: Chee cheong fun, Hokkien fried noodles

Restoran Koon Kee

Restoran Koon Kee is one of the best places in the city to sample wan tan mee. A Cantonese dish popular in Hong Kong, Malaysia, and Singapore, it comprises noodles sautéed in sweetened black sauce and is traditionally served with toppings such as char siew (barbecued pork slices) or chicken slices. The shop is over 50 years old and is located opposite Hong Leong Bank along Petaling Street. Locals are especially partial to the noodles served here as their texture is springy and flavoursome – the perfect combination for wan tan mee. Another uncommon garnishing for the noodles is braised chicken feet with mushrooms. Read More...

Opening Hours: 10:00 – 22:00
Location: Jalan Hang Lekir

Restoran Platinum Chinatown

With a bright yellow and red exterior that is hard to miss as you enter Petaling Street market area from Jalan Sultan, Chinatown Pavillion beckons hungry visitors into its enclosures with an eye-catching signboard and a tempting aroma. Serving kopitiam favourites such as curry and prawn noodles, char kuay teow, wantan noodles, fried rice and beef noodles, this restaurant’s strategic location and affordable prices prove to be a great pulling factor.

Opening Hours: Daily, 08:00 – 00:00
Address: 27 Jalan Hang Lekir (adjacent to Jalan Petaling)
Cuisine: Local kopitiam (coffeeshop) favourites

Syarikat Makanan Salai Kiew Brothers

Daging salai or smoked, dried meat (sometimes referred to as ‘barbequed meat’ here) can be found in abundance around Chinatown, particularly along Jalan Sultan. The Kiew Brothers’ outlet reputedly sells the best smoked meat in town, a family-owned business which has been passed on from generation to generation, specialising in all types of smoked meat from pork to prawn

Location: On Jalan Sultan, next to Kong Wooi Fong Tea Merchants

The Warehouse Gallery

Housed in a colonial-style, 100 year old former textiles warehouse in Chinatown, The Warehouse is a hip and quirky art gallery with a café, bar and restaurant (Ril’s Steakhouse) attached to it. During the day, at the small Café Art, you can have a light breakfast, lunch or just cakes, play board games or just take advantage of the free Wi-Fi. One of its quirky features is serving drinks with artistic flourish – like a cappuccino that is served with an impression of US President Barack Obama done in the foam. Sri Mahamariamman (the oldest Hindu temple in KL) sits directly opposite The Warehouse, while Sze Ya Temple (the oldest Chinese temple in the city) is just a few doors down. Read More...

Opening Hours: 10:00 – 1:00 Tuesday – Sunday
Address: 198 Jalan Tun HS Lee, KL.
Tel: +603 2022 0528

Yook Woo Hin

Having been around for a long time, Yook Woo Hin’s longevity can be attributed to the quality of its food, which is so good that it’s still popular with the masses even after all these years. Its famous dim sum is served only in the mornings, while their live prawn noodles and deep-fried chicken remain firm favourites.

Opening Hours: Daily, 05:00 – 15:00
Address: 100 Jalan Petaling
Tel: (603) 2078 4681
Cuisine: Chinese, dim sum

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