Located in a newly gentrified area of Chinatown in a shop which not long ago was the bedroom for homeless people, Chocha Foodstore is the very epitomy of modern Chinatown.
The building is a stunner. An old shophouse with original tiles throughout and even much of the original paintwork. This combined with an architect’s eye transforms this once rundown shop into one of the trendiest cafes in Malaysia.We ordered the Biang Biang Inspired Noodles, Duck Confit Rice Bowl and a couple of drinks. We loved it all.The Biang Biang Noodles were thick & wide sheets of pasta topped with crushed peanuts and chilli oil. For me, the noodles were slightly too thick and wide, but you do sort of need something big for all the saucy goodness to rest on.
The duck confit was great and the mix of barley and rice was enjoyable. The asian style salad was a beauty and its sharpness cut through the fattiness of the duck just perfectly.The drinks were a fermented ginger drink and a sour plum thing. Both were delightful and something quite different from typical cafe drinks.One thing to note is that coffee is not available here. And usually for me that’s a cardinal sin. But I agree with the owners that coffee just doesn’t fit in this cafe. And that’s kind of refreshing.Internet here is very fast at 30mbps down and 20mbps up and there is plenty of space for opening a laptop if you need to get a few bits and pieces done.
Lastly, we need to talk about price. I’ve read a few reviews saying this place is over priced. This place is expensive by Malaysian standards, but it’s definitely not overpriced. You get handmade noodles, house made drinks from fresh ingredients and perhaps the best looking cafe in Malaysia. For that, you have to pay above average prices. And here you do. But the prices are so reasonable by world standards that it’s just not worth commenting on.If you’ve got no cash, don’t come here.
Love this place.
156 Jalan Petaling, Kuala Lumpur
Opening Hours: 11:00 – 23:00 (closed Monday)
Biang Biang Noodles: Rm18
Duck Confit Rice Bowl: Rm26
Ginger & Sour Plum Drinks: Rm18 each
I remember when Lokl was being built when I was staying at BackHome Hostel which is next door. That was about 5 years ago now and it’s still going strong today.
I recently had breakfast here while staying at Big M Hotel (highly recommended) and it was really good.
I ordered a cappuccino which had great flavour and had beautifully silky milk on top. A really good cappuccino.
I also ordered a granola bowl. And let’s just say it took way too long to arrive at the table. Over half an hour. But when it did arrive, I was very pleased.The cafe itself has a great fitout and is frequented mainly by foreigners. I’m not sure why. Maybe because it’s next door to the hostel or maybe just because it’s the best cafe in the area. Whatever the case, don’t expect to see many (any) Malaysian faces.
This also seems to be an excellent place to work with the odd power point and nice tables. But when I was there, the wifi was dead. Not working even a single bit. Which is sad because when I last stayed at BackHome Hostel about 4 years ago, their wifi was great and it’s the BackHome wifi which you’re trying to plug into.
This is a great little cafe, but the two things that really bugged me were how long that granola took to arrive (30min!!!) and the wifi not working. Still, worth a visit for the coffee.
Lokl Coffee Co.
30, Jalan Tun H S Lee, Kuala Lumpur
+60 3 2072 1188
Opening Hours: 08:00 – 18:00
I’ve been visiting cafes in Kuala Lumpur for as long as I can remember and to be honest, they’ve largely been mediocre. Crass copies of things that were going on in Australia a decade earlier — they felt old and nasty.
But I really should have been coming to this place all along because it’s now my favourite cafe in Kuala Lumpur. I might even go so far as to say it’s the best cafe in Kuala Lumpur. It’s been around a few years now and I just never got around to trying it.Located on a small road off Jalan Pudu, VCR is in an inconvenient and odd location. You have to go out of your way to visit it. And that’s why it wasn’t that busy when I visited. I mean, most tables were filled, but there was no waiting list or anything. And I’d kind of expect a waiting list at a place this good.
To get here, your best bet is to get off the monorail or train at Hang Tuah and then walking a couple of hundred metres or so.The coffees I had here were excellent (RM11). Silky smooth milk, a strong coffee flavour, great temperature.
I also had a bowl of granola with yoghurt, milk and fruit which was awesome (RM19). A little small for my liking, but actually a really good size for a normal meal. I probably just usually overeat when at cafes.The fitout is a good one with plenty of tables for singles and couples meaning you can easily set up a laptop here without feeling guilty. And the wifi is good!
I’m a big fan of VCR and I think most people will be too. Highly recommended if you’re into coffee and are in KL.
2 Jalan Galloway, Kuala Lumpur
+60 3 2110 2330
Opening Hours: 08:30 – 23:00
We interrupt our Bali programming for a good old fashioned rant. The taxi services in Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia are bad. Really bad. There’s two problems. First of all, the drivers are lazy. They very rarely can be bothered to drive you anywhere unless they are paid a lot for it. Secondly, they’re dishonest. I think they’re more lazy than dishonest, but dishonest they are! OK, so perhaps I shouldn’t lump all drivers in Kuala Lumpur into the same basket. It’s not fair to the 5 that are hard working honest men.
So this is how it goes down in Kuala Lumpur. You go to a taxi stand and are about to hop in the cab and the driver asks you where you’re going. When you state where, they quote a price. The law in Kuala Lumpur is that prices must be determined by the meter, but 90% of drivers refuse to use the meter when tourists get in the car. So what does this mean? You either pay about 4 times as much as the real fare or you just don’t travel by cab because it is too much of a hassle to constantly flag down cabs only for them to quote ridiculous prices. And they’re not even nice about it. My experience has generally been that not only are they incredibly shifty, they’re rude too — especially when you challenge them and insist on the meter.
One guy I challenged insisted that the meter doesn’t pay him enough. So instead, he rips tourists off. But not just by a little bit so he can make ends meet, by a factor of four just for good measure. In reality, if it’s not good enough pay, he should get a job doing something else.
So this is my message to the universe to say that Kuala Lumpur really needs to do something about the taxi situation because at the moment it is unworkable and makes travel around the city very difficult when you’re not near a train line.