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Best Places To Eat in Taman Desa

Best Places To Eat in Taman Desa

Conveniently tucked between the city centre and homely residences, Taman Desa is blessed with the gift of balance β€” also true when it comes to its food. The neighbourhood juggles a variety of cuisines, so there is something for all. Come by for baked breads in the morning, barbecued yong tau foo in the evening and satisfying skewers after dark!
Burpple Guides
Burpple Guides

This hole-in-the-wall bakery and restaurant does comfort food that's best for breakfast, brunch or a bite in between. Recognisable by a red kettle hanging above the door, the wooden-walled Red Kettle has rustic charms fit for a cosy date. The Bread Basket (RM16) is simple sustenance, served with an impressive trio of fruit spread, salted butter and our favourite, homemade Marmite butter. For something more wholesome to "warm up your soul", as Burppler Jessica Lau puts it, get the Porkie Bowl (RM18). The newly introduced dish features crispy roast pork belly, onsen egg and rice in a luscious sauce. It's also never too early for fried chicken β€” their sizable take on the tasty, Southern-inspired Fried Chicken and Corn (RM22) is worth trying. On drinks, options run from comforting hot Milo (RM4.50) to Vietnamese Drip Coffee (from RM9) to jostle your senses in the morn.
Avg price per person: RM30
Photo by Burppler Jessica Lau

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From the people behind Sanuki Udon and Taisyu Yakiniku come Maruhi Sakaba, a reliable yakitori bar. After late hours at the office, reward yourself with a visit to this nighttime nook for skewers, drinks and izakaya vibes. It's best to bring company for this β€” perhaps a colleague who stayed late too β€” so you can share a kettle of the mellow house cocktail Maruhi Sour (RM48, or RM16 for a mug). Expect speedy service and a unique selection of sashimi, like Chicken (RM15) and Pork Liver (RM15). But if you're here for a safe, solacing supper, stick to the tantalising skewers with their amazing housemade chili dip. Both the Chicken Skin (RM4.30) and Chicken Wings (RM5.30) juggle a good amount of grease with crispiness for a treat to complement your zesty drink. Meanwhile, meatier picks like the Chicken Thigh (RM4.30) and Pork Belly (RM4.30) are moist, juicy and great to fill up on! Pro tip: There is no air-conditioning, so lose the layers and dress light for this.
Avg price per person: RM40

Come 6pm, Old Tricycle is where you'll want to bring a bunch of friends for a boisterous dinner! This spacious, open-air restaurant is one of the only places in KL where one can have Yong Tau Foo (from RM1.30 per piece) charcoal-grilled by the table. Brinjal, okra, bittergourd, chillies and more fish paste-stuffed selections are coated in a sheen of hickory barbecue sauce before hitting the grill. The bacon yong tau foo is especially favoured, likely for the intense aroma that comes from grilling bacon. When here, also make sure to snag a plate of yong tau foo's best carb-pairing, Chee Cheong Fun (RM2.90). The silken flat noodles are best with fried pork skin, curry sauce and a dollop of slightly spicy sambal. It's also available with assam sauce or sweet and chili sauce. If you have a soft spot for all things Instagrammable, their quaint Chinese-accented metal cups and a now popular old tricycle mural will be exciting features to look out for.
Avg price per person: RM15
Photo by Burppler Christie Tang

Tuck Tuck Tei first shot to fame when its young, handsome owner took apprenticeship at the chicken rice stall it houses. The 'chicken rice prince' surely contributed to the restaurant's initial popularity but it was the quality local food and airy, laidback environment that kept people coming back. When stumped for ideas to lunch with a group of colleagues, turn to the sheer variety here. The Roast Chicken Rice (RM5.50) is popular for the smooth, fleshy meat with aromatic rice, but the same stall also offers an attractive spread for good old economy rice. A full plate of three dishes will cost you between RM5 to RM7 β€” quite a steal! Alternatively, a small sheltered stall outdoors peddles delicious Chee Cheong Fun (from RM2). The secret's in the sauce. A duo of brilliantly red sweet sauce and fiery chili sauce perfects the dish.
Avg price per person: RM10

Here's a Michelin-starred name in KL you may not have heard of. Originally from Hong Kong where it merited the award, Pang's Kitchen opened its first offshoot in this unlikely neighbourhood two years ago. To celebrate occasions, bring your family to this hidden gem for a gourmet Cantonese feast. The menu in KL is a trimmed version of the original, but there are still over 100 dishes to choose from. Resist the tempation to order your usual fare and try the specials, like the Scrambled Milk with Scallop (RM38). The dish folds together scrambled eggs with milk and sliced scallops (lots of them), and will surprise with its soft, bouncy texture. The presentation could be improved on, so focus on its titillating flavours with a finishing drizzle of vinegar. The fragrant Fried Sticky Rice (RM35), abundant with chopped Chinese sausages, mushrooms and crispy dried shrimps, is a great main to complement the former.
Avg price per person: RM30

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We'll never grow tired of talking about Sanuki Udon and we're pretty sure Taman Desa folks feel the same. Curtained by Japanese noren panels, the joint dishes out the area's best bowls of udon, and there is beer to boot. If you owe a friend a treat, this wallet-friendly watering hole will do right by you for dinner and drinks! Huddle over an order of Udon Suki (udon steamboat, from RM40 for two) that comes with fresh vegetables, mushrooms and meat. The bubbling hotpot will warm you up as a glass of ice-cold Sapporo Beer (RM14) cools you down. Alternatively, go for the simpler, single-portion udon bowls and jazz up dinner with freshly fried kushiage β€” the melt-in-your-mouth Sweet Potato (RM2.50) and Quail Egg (RM3.50) are excellent
Avg price per person: RM10
Photo by Burppler Vantric Chan

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Advocates of healthy food that tastes good, Breadfruits continues to promote wholesome cafe food at their second outlet. The relaxed space is boosted by a touch of greenery, setting the tone for a laidback business brunch. Order the Spanish Baked Egg (RM22), a tasty classic refreshed with the use of cooked cannellini beans, instead of canned baked beans. The cafe also uses free-range eggs from Bukit Tinggi and daily-bought morning market produce that make all the difference in their dishes. A Brunch Pasta With 7 Min Egg (RM22) wins our vote for the perfectly wobbly egg that completes the light carbonara pasta beneath. When here in two or threes, do as Burppler Daniel Yap says and share the Butcher Paella (RM55). It's a commendable version of the Spanish dish, teeming with chicken chorizo and fragrant herbs.
Avg price per person: RM30
Photo by Burppler Jeff Lim

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Charlie's Cafe runs as a social enterprise, sourcing farm produce in support of Orang Asli farmers and hiring disadvantaged East Malaysians to run the store. Those who don't know this will still come in earnest for their authentic Sarawakian delights. Swing by for a feel-good meal and bring company β€” friends, family and all. You mustn't miss the Chicken Chop (RM17.90) with Sarawak Black Pepper Sauce. Brined and battered, the golden brown chicken is redolent of herbs and delicious when doused in its peppery gravy. Dessert is a piquant Musang King Durian Cheesecake (RM16.90) with chunks of fresh durian flesh. The canteen-like decor is nothing to shout about, but there is a warmth that comes from knowing the good this place does for the community. Look out for the Pay It Forward wall filled with receipts for paid food, dedicated to those who cannot afford a meal β€” you too can contribute with just RM5!
Avg price per person: RM25
Photo by Burppler Trisha Toh

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Above the busy streets of Taman Desa, this Korean barbecue establishment is even busier serving a slew of lunchtime patrons. You can count on Seoul Korea to appease your appetite for grilled meats in the afternoon. Most are here for their special lunch menu, which sees a Hot-Plate Bulgogi BBQ Set priced at only RM33 for two β€” ideal for a fun, pocket-friendly date! Available with beef or pork, this set includes two bowls of rice and a plentiful supply of banchan (side dishes). In terms of banchan, Seoul Korea emerges one of our favourites for its diverse plates, from marinated cold chicken to shredded seaweed and pickled lotus root. Also spot a rarely found Jju-Kkumi Ppok-geum Bab Set (pan-broiled baby octopus rice, RM14). The quick meal of baby octopus slathered in Korean-style hot sauce is a must-order if you enjoy spicy seafood!
Avg price per person: RM25

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Spot Rayong Thai along Jalan 3/109F by its open kitchen helmed by a team of Thai cooks and servers. Humbly furnished with plastic tables and chairs against a bright blue wall, the restaurant makes a surefire spot for a casual, authentic Thai dinner with friends. The main attraction here is their super affordable fish. At RM35.90 flat, the Steamed Fish with Lime & Chili is a catch. The butterflied barramundi is doused in tangy broth, and every spoonful fuels you for another. Apart from steamed, the fish can also be deep-fried and paired with Thai red curry sauce β€” a tastier option for those who like their fish skin crisp! The Green Curry (from RM11.90)'s diluted appearance is not too be underestimated, for the curry offers robust flavours along with minced chicken and long beans. Their rendition of iced Thai Milk Tea (RM4.50) is not too sweet, and just nice to cap off the meal with.
Avg price per person: RM20

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The top picks, popular finds and newly opened places in Singapore and Kuala Lumpur, curated by Burpple editors!

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