The food scene doesn’t give any signs of slowing down in Kuala Lumpur. A few days after the grand launch of DC3 restaurants (a collective term given to Kikubari, The Locker Room, and Nero Nero at DC Mall rooftop) late last month, we discovered another dining gem flourishing in Damansara City Centre: Symphony by Chef Jo. This is the place to be if you’re always in search for eclectic food that pushes the boundary of cooking and dining. Its pasta with chocolate sauce or avocado fries will surely make you forget about casual French fare or delectable tapas for a while.

Another newly-opened shopping gallery, The Starling Mall, joins the cast of venues that plays host to exciting new eateries like Mitsuyado Seimen, which offers Tsukemen — dry ramen that’s meant to be dipped in a separate broth. Existing malls have also seen a surge of new restaurants. The trendy Pavilion Kuala Lumpur has welcomed new additions such as Il Iberico and The Establishment, while Nu Sentral saw the official launch of healthy fast food chain Kurin held early this month.

If your refuse to be a mall rat this weekend, let Taman Tun Dr Ismail acquaint you to Australia-inspired brunch or KL’s first halal-certified Vietnamese café. Whether you’re looking for a new lunch spot or a place where you can indulge in healthy yet delicious cuisine, you’re bound to find the perfect spot on this list of new restaurants in KL.

1
Kurin

Living a healthier lifestyle just got easier in Brickfields, thanks to the launch of Kurin in Nu Sentral. Aside from allowing you to customise your own poké bowls called Don (RM11), this healthy fast food chain aims to grow into a grab-and-go chain that specialises in pokéritto (RM11), a popular Hawaiian dish that’s served in burrito form. Not only are these easy to eat, but they are also perfect for hungry people rushing to get home from the gym, or vice versa.

Kurin, Lot 5.10, Nu Sentral, No. 201, Jalan Tun Sambanthan, Brickfields, 50470 Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia, +6012 419 0316

2
El Iberico

Your search for a new restaurant with excellent pork ribs is over. Just pay El Iberico a visit and you’ll discover joy in its specialty of Spanish-bred, free-range, acorn-fed pata negra hams. Aside from its mains — Iberico honey mustard meaty ribs (RM68) and a marbled shoulder cut of the Iberian pig (RM78) — porcine lovers will also enjoy a repertoire of Spanish, Italian, and European cuisine. There’s also a hearty seafood paella with chorizo slices (RM65). If you find these options too heavy, go for the tapas-style starter platter, which comprises marinated olives, manchego cheese, tomato bread with jamon serrano ham and goat’s cheese, and marinated octopus (RM35).

El IbericoLot C4.05.01, Pavilion Kuala Lumpur, No. 168, Jalan Bukit Bintang, Bukit Bintang, 55100 Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia, +603 2110 2631

3
Symphony by Chef Jo

Damansara City Mall is indeed shaping up to be an edgy dining hub with the opening of Symphony by Chef Jo. With former MasterChef Malaysia judge Mohd Johari Edrus helming its culinary orchestra, this fancy restaurant produces a variety of gastronomic delights such as sauce-smothered chocolate pasta brimming with mussels, clams, and baby octopus (RM70), and signature ‘pitzaal’ made with crispy Marmite chicken, as well as pineapple and kiwi fruits (RM38). Its battered avocado fries (RM20), and foamy Nitro coffee with cotton candy (RM16.90) are also worth trying.

Symphony by Chef Jo, Lot L1-19 to L1-21, First Level, Damansara City Mall, Jalan Damanlela, Damansara Town Centre, 50490 Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia, +603 2011 7173

4
The Establishment

If you’re tired of the usual places to hang out at within Pavilion KL, then you’ll be pleased to learn that a new restaurant and bar has opened near La Bodega and Acme Bar + Coffee. Serving fusion cuisine from Malaysia to Melbourne and beyond, The Establishment lays out a menu filled with snacks such as crunchy soft shell crab (RM22), thickly battered mixed mushrooms (RM17) and crispy Boxing chicken (RM18). All these perfectly pair with a slew of refreshing cocktails like the Establishment (a fruity blend of gin and sweet vermouth, RM38) and Ms. Hilton Sangria (a cocktail of rose, sweet vermouth and sliced fruits, RM28).

The Establishment, Units C3.08.02, Level 3, Pavilion Kuala Lumpur, No. 168, Jalan Bukit Bintang, Bukit Bintang, 55100 Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia, +6019 329 8698

5
The Other Half Cafe

Looking for a new place to brunch at? Well, head on to TTDI and dine at this easygoing yet sophisticated cafe. If its high ceilings and spacious layout don’t impress you, its Australian-inspired brunch offerings sure will. One of the most talked-about cafés that recently opened its doors in the city, its kitchen has managed to pull off major twists on your favourite morning meals. A clear example is the baked eggs, which are served concealed beneath puff pastry (RM26), creamy omelettes blanketed by crispy vermicelli and shimeji mushrooms (RM24), and poached eggs wrapped around slow-cooked ox cheek rendang (RM31).

The Other Half Cafe, Unit 2-1, Greens Terrace, No.1, Jalan Wan Kadir 3, Taman Tun Dr Ismail, 60000 Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia, +603 2771 6221

6
Mitsuyado Seimen

Mitsuyado Seimen may have only been opened for a few months at The Starling Mall, but it’s already getting rave reviews for its Tsukemen or dipping ramen, which is served with a small, separate bowl of hot broth. The noodles are handmade from Japanese wheat flour and taste so good, they can be eaten on their own. If you love spicy flavours, we recommend you having the TanTan Sesame Tsukemen (RM27.90/RM29.90), or the Karashi Tsukemen (RM26.90/RM28.90). For something a little more unconventional, try the Cheese Tsukemen (RM29.90/RM31.90), which features a yuzu broth and cheese sauce on the side.

Mitsuyado Seimen, Unit S-229, 2nd Floor, The Starling Mall, No. 6, Jalan ss21/37, Damansara Uptown, 47400 Petaling Jaya, Selangor, Malaysia, +603 7662 5929

7
Super Saigon Pho Cafe

The food landscape in Taman Tun Dr Ismail has just gotten more exciting with the opening of Super Saigon Pho Cafe, the first halal-certified Vietnamese cafe in Kuala Lumpur. Inspired by the Vietnamese eateries in Melbourne, Super Saigon focuses on authentic dishes using premium ingredients. Its pho, bahn mi and spring rolls are made from imported Australian beef, chicken, herbs and aromatics. Drop by and try its medium rare sliced beef and beef balls (RM18.90), vegetarian pho (RM14.90), grilled lamb chop with crispy spring roll (RM18.90), and grilled lemongrass chicken (RM16.90).

Super Saigon, No. 28, Jalan Datuk Sulaiman, Taman Tun Dr Ismail60000 Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia, +603 7732 8874

8
The Dark Gallery

Feeling a little bit sad lately? Let The Dark Alley pick you up with its repertoire of single-origin chocolate ice cream (RM21) and glasses of hot chocolate (RM15). Prized for its high cacao content, the artisanal dark chocolate desserts and drinks come in Madagascan, Dominican Republic, and Venezuelan varieties. Try a scoop of each to taste their contrasting shades of fruitiness, bitterness, acidity, and intensity. Chocolate lovers will fall in love with Chocolate Rhapsody (RM28), while those preferring dark ones will love the Ecuador dark chocolate tart (RM14).

The Dark Gallery, Lot L1-023A and L1-K-007, Level 1, MyTown Shopping Centre, No. 6, Jalan Cochrane, Seksyen 90, 55100 Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia, +603 2715 7360

9
The World is Flat

The concept of overloaded pizzas has finally reached Malaysian shores with the opening of The World is Flat at The Bee in Publika. The eatery puts a spin on favourites like sandwiches, pizzas and pasta. Its Butcher’s Love, for instance, is a pizza that’s loaded with roast beef, chicken ham, charred onions, portobello mushrooms, mozzarella, Monterey Jack, and cheddar and truffle mayo (RM24), while its Pastrami Melt is a diet-busting mix of tender house-cured beef layered with mushroom tempeh, honey butter, Russian dressing, and cheese in rye (RM30). Other items such as the white truffled mushroom pasta (RM40), and Spam Wham! (chicken luncheon meat fries in capsicum guacamole, sour cream, garlic glaze, torched marshmallows and melted cheese for RM28) have been receiving rave reviews too.

The World is Flat, Unit 36B, Block C, Level G2, The Bee, Publika Shopping Gallery, No. 1, Jalan Dutamas 1, 50480 Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia, +603 6201 8577

10
Joy St.

This small dessert parlour has been bringing joy to Bangsar foodies with its authentic Italian gelato, which is made in-house daily. We’re impressed that Joy St. also offers 99 percent fat-free waffles and sorbets, which come in flavours such as pistachio, Earl Grey, and watermelon lychee. Now we have the perfect excuse to indulge.

Joy St.6B, Ground Floor, Jalan Telawi 2, Bangsar Baru, 59100 Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia, +6012 671 2104