Legit cafes in Kuala Lumpur for coffee junkies

Marcus Foo, co-founder and managing director of Papa Palheta Malaysia, shares his five favourite cafes for seriously good coffee in KL.

Best cafes in Kuala Lumpur
  • Angeline Tse
  • November 2018

Not that there’s anything wrong with kopi-O but thanks to Kuala Lumpur’s third wave coffee movement, you also have great cafes to pick from if you're thirsty for a flat white or cold brew. And not just any ol' flat white - the cafe scene in Kuala Lumpur is so diverse now that you can find anything from ones that only serve rotating menus of single-origin coffee, to others that insist on roasting their own beans onsite. So coffee snobs, bring it on. Kuala Lumpur is ready for you.

Pulp Café, Kuala Lumpur.


More than just a café, Pulp opens in new window is a one-stop shop for purchasing, servicing and repairing coffee equipment; buying specialty coffee (it has just started selling capsules that are Nespresso machine-compatible); attending brewing classes; and of course, enjoying a delicious meal rounded off with a cup of hot brewed specialty coffee. Free samples are available at the tasting bar.
Must try: On a hot day, try one of their cold brew coffees or their Nitro Black Matter from the tap.

VCR, Jalan Galloway

Where Marcus is concerned, VCR opens in new window is one of the best purveyors of specialty coffee in town, and he has been a regular at the Jalan Galloway outlet since they opened in 2013. ‘They pride themselves on sourcing quality specialty coffee both for their espresso and filtered single origin coffee. Many pioneering baristas have gone on to open their own shops in recent years’, he says.
Must try: The seasonal filter brew coffee, with a side of their amazing peanut butter banana chocolate cake.

Cream by The Roast Things.

Cream by The Roast Things, Daratan Prima

Cream by The Roast Things opens in new window has a roastery within its premises, so you can savour the aroma from the roasting process as you enjoy a cup of their filtered brew specialty coffee at the bar. ‘One thing I like about The Roast Things is its ambience; it reminds me of a quaint little coffee shop in Japan – clean, minimalist, with very warm and engaging baristas,’ says Marcus.
Must try: Their Ethiopian and Latin American single origins from small batch farms.

Yellow Brick Road, Jalan Batai

If you need proof that Yellow Brick Road opens in new window is worth its salt, two of the four co-founders of this family-friendly joint have won the Malaysia Barista Champsionship and Malaysia Brewers Cup respectively. Come here for responsibly-sourced specialty coffee from local roasters, as well as a local-inspired menu.
Must try: Their milk coffees pair well with their pancakes; the monthly special beverage is also worth a shot.



The co-founders of Littlepeople opens in new window are veterans in the specialty coffee scene who have championed quality and education in the business of brewing coffee. They serve coffees from another local coffee roaster called Artisan Roaster, as well as a good range of Chinese tea. Marcus is also partial to their duck rotolo and burnt cheesecake.
Must try: Their seasonal brew, which can come from far-flung places like Scandinavia.