Heading to Johor Bahru for the weekend? Be sure to add “cafe-hopping” to your itinerary; The capital of Johor has everything from coffee shops with award-winning baristas to trendy brunch restaurants. Here are five of our favourites. For more places to eat around Malaysia, check out our list of the best ways to eat.
Best Cafe In Johor Bahru
Replete with ferns and flowers, the first floor of this cozy two-story café feels a little cramped – plants, display racks, a drinks counter, tables and chairs are all precariously positioned in the space – so head upstairs for more comfortable resting seats. Flowers in the Window is the other project from the same people behind the popular Roost Café and offers a similar menu.
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This Hainanese chicken noodle dish is unlike any we’ve tried: the noodles are thick and nice and sticky, and perfect with the sweet and spicy sauce. The chicken is lightly fried, but not too greasy. Drinks and desserts take on a floral theme – try the lavender-pineapple smoothie and the lemon meringue milkshake.
Don’t get confused when you first enter Bev C and don’t see the cafe – it’s on the second floor. The first floor is a retail space with staples mostly in black or white. Once you’re happy with your purchase, head up the narrow stairs and order coffee and snacks to refuel.
Snacks come in the form of toast and bagels, and the house special iced espresso cubes are a favorite. The coffee is ground into cubes and served with a side of milk – that way, you can enjoy a cold cup without watering it down with ice.
Shakespeare’s Specialty Milkshake is the restaurant’s newest take on milkshakes. The advantage of this cozy little café, filled with natural light, is that the team doesn’t quite get over the saccharine mix that has “diabetes” written all over it. Try the Kinder Bueno Shake in a tall glass with a rim topped with Nutella, biscuits and half of a Kinder Bueno.
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If you’re feeling adventurous, there are other toppings available, like waffles served with ice cream and chocolate bananas. And if you’re looking for something savory, we recommend getting the kruffle – a flatbread stuffed with cheese with ham, tuna or pastrami before being pressed into a waffle iron.
Caffeine College is a short walk from the main café area. Pipes line the walls, fluorescent lights hang from the ceiling, and exposed brick walls painted white add to the charm of this quaint joint.
You can find the usual brunch dishes on their menu as well as delicious pasta and pancakes. The FOC Aglio Olio comes with your choice of smoked duck or beef bacon, mushroom buttons and 63ºC of weevil eggs, creating a delicious sauce once we put our pasta down. Skip the Korean fried chicken with pancakes – the chewy pancakes were hard to swallow and the sauce that was coating the chicken basically tasted like ketchup.
Compared to other restaurants around these parts, which are decorated with crazy decor, The Replacement stands out with its simple design. Natural light bounces off the white walls and marble bar, giving this Spartan Café a warm glow.
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Order the soft shell crab bao with fries: the crunchy texture of the crab is a nice contrast to the soft, homemade bread. For dessert, get a bowl of warm churro with your choice of dip—salted caramel, dark chocolate, hazelnut Nutella, and salted egg yolk.
The prodigal son returns – but alas, to Johor Bahru. JH Yee knows beans and beer; Last December, the 27-year-old and winner of the 2012 Malaysian Barista Championship,
Food Personality Award in 2013, and the overall coffee champion has set up shop at the Atlas Coffee Embassy. With its own Atlas Signature Blend coffees—Brazil’s Santo Antonio, Costa Rica’s La Trinidad, and Sumatra’s Teja Raja Simalungon—the café is the champion of the capital of a competitor: a sunlit space in white by Japanese designer Jeff Ong. Geeks brew from Penang to Singapore. The pies thrown back from the days of Yee’s Top Brew are great, too.
Factory 30 is exactly what The Factory 30 proposes: a two-story, 4,000-square-foot coffee spot located in the Austin Hills industrial estate, hidden among warehouses and workshops. Factory 30 is the headquarters for the Just Want Coffee brand; Ink Brew from JWC, as well as Headmost coffee shop from Just Want Coffee are good in Johor. For friendly service, and if you’re quick about what’s in your cup, you’ll be happy here.
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A menu or guide detailing the different bean types, roast types, and types of coffee roasters can be overwhelming, but the baristas and staff are more than happy to talk you through it. Note that there is always a crowd, but the daily fresh bread is reason enough to wait for a table.
At this pint-sized Jalan Dube storefront — which, by the way, has a swinging seat — the staff give a twist on traditional ice cream with the help of good liquid nitrogen. Lest you start your statement with – “But liquid nitrogen ice cream is nothing new!” Let the best and freshest ice cream this side of southern Malaysia do the talking. There are only four no-fuss flavors: original milk, chocolate, brownie, and cream and butter. But less is more, especially when it comes to the tried and tested classics.
Order a scoop of the Original, top it with warm homemade chocolate chip cookies and wash it down with a glass of milk; It’s as deceptively decadent as any ice cream treat, but it really works. Coffee is available, but we suggest choosing from Gryphon’s extensive tea list.
Located in the heart of the city on Jalan Dobi, Roost is a two-story time machine, a place where you can park your car for the afternoons. She’s determined to delight—and she does so with her details, from mid-century modern sofas and mismatched tables and chairs, to antique telephone sets, miniature jukeboxes and ornate mirrors, to relics of the past. A Malaysian will feel more at home here than at any of the other painstaking, everlasting all-you-can-eat, soulless restaurant in Johor Bahru: the menu is based on co-owner Wong’s family recipes, and the drinks are served in colorful little buckets. .
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The Hainanese noodles and roast chicken nuggets come highly recommended, and after you’re done eating and drinking, visit Miss Irene Handmade and The Girl Next Door: a custom accessory store, designer/vintage shop, and hair salon sharing an outdoor area. It takes. roost.
Brue’s orchestra brings the entire symphony into its own distinctly disciplined style; Like a concert hall, the ceilings are decorated with strings resembling stringed instruments, and light bulbs hang like musical notes. The décor, provided by Singaporean design consultancy Ehka Studio, is award-winning, but the focus remains on the coffee: Café owner Isaac Loh is a licensed professional cuppa, one of Malaysia’s few Q-raters.
Standards are high here; Orchestra sources only beans grade 85 and up, and specialty coffees and seasonal house blends are standout offerings. Pair your coffee with Eggs Benedict or Breakfast Orchestra. We also love the yogurt granola topped with fresh berries or banana and pomegranate.
Start your day with a cup of Hainan coffee, two kampung half-boiled eggs and toast with butter and kaya. Across the street is Hiap Joo’s Bread Shop and Bakery; Stand in line for the banana cake over there.
Cafes In Jb
Don’t skip nasi padang here; Adam Surusu Rendang has been serving JB’s famous beef and chicken, Assam fish pedas and fried mussels with chili for nearly 30 years now. Finish off breakfast with coffee, toast and a hard boiled egg.
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Sign up for our newsletter to enjoy the best out there – it costs absolutely nothing. 2022 is a year full of long weekends and I am sure many of you are planning to visit Johor Bahru (JB) for food, karaoke, massage or all of the above. Personally, I plan to pop into the coffee shop all day and drink my body weight in a matcha latte.
With an abundance of IG-worthy nooks and crannies, it’s hard to resist a good all-day brunch spot, so here are JB’s 16 cafes (some of which opened quietly during the pandemic) to check out on your next trip down the bridge.
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The folks behind one of JB’s most popular coffee shops, People & Places, have opened their latest venture, The FOUNDERS Cafe, near Taman Mount Austin. This industrial, Melbourne-inspired space is filled with lush animal furniture and wall art.
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