Cover Nasi lemak has been called the unofficial national dish of Malaysia (Photo: iStock)

The Tatler Malaysia team picks their favourite nasi lemak spots in the city

Nasi lemak is one of the few things universally beloved by Malaysians from all walks of life. Due to its massive popularity, it’s ubiquitous but where do you go for nasi lemak that’s truly worth your while? Here are six nasi lemak places as recommended by the editorial team of Tatler Malaysia.

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1. Village Park Nasi Lemak

"When it comes to nasi lemak, Village Park and its signature fried chicken (ayam goreng berempah) is always at top of my mind. The chicken is cooked to perfection—meaty, juicy and crispy—and the whole dish is brimming with aromatic flavours. I can eat it plain but it does come with sweet-savoury sambal chilli that's mildly spicy. The restaurant is always packed and there’s usually a queue to order this dish."

- Elizabeth Soong, Print Editor

"It may look small from the entrance, but this hawker-like Damansara Utama restaurant knows that it draws the rice-hungry crowds. The Nasi Lemak Ayam Goreng here is just flat-out packed with flavours. Crispy and well-seasoned chicken paired with sweet, tangy but spicy sambal and piping hot fragrant rice. You know the stuff is good when it tastes spectacular after surviving the delivery journey to your home."

- Tania Jayatilaka, Senior Digital Writer

Village Park Nasi Lemak | No. 5, Jalan SS21/37, Damansara Utama, Petaling Jaya, Selangor | +603-7710 7860| Order via Grab

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2. Nasi Lemak Peel Road

"It’s nasi lemak, Chinese-style—and yes, it’s non-halal. What I like about it is that there’s a smorgasbord of dishes to complement the fragrant rice, with my favourites being the wild boar curry and generous servings of sambal squid. Heavenly!"

- Brian Cheong, Digital Editor

Nasi Lemak Peel Road | No 92, Jalan Peel, Maluri, Kuala Lumpur | +6012-698 5122 | Order through FoodPanda

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3. The Hungry Tapir

"The Hungry Tapir's nasi lemak is great for vegans and vegetarians craving local food. It captures all the same flavours with their tempeh sambal, mushroom rendang and coconut rice."

- Zue Wei Leong, Digital Writer

The Hungry Tapir |135, Jalan Petaling, City Centre, Kuala Lumpur | +603-2022 2137 | Order via Letsumai

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4. Ganga Cafe

"The Ganga Cafe’s vegetarian nasi lemak substitutes the anchovies in its sambal for dried mushrooms and uses mock meat in the curries. Healthy, delicious yet completely free of MSG, the sambal has a touch of Ayurveda, as the ginger and garlic in it settles the stomach."

- Jennifer Choo, Editor-in-Chief, Tatler Homes

Ganga Cafe | 19, Lorong Kurau, Bangsar, Kuala Lumpur | +603-2284 2119 | Order via FoodPanda

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5. Nasi Lemak Tanglin

"Founded in 1948, this popular stall by Tasik Perdana offers nasi lemak with a variety of delicious accompaniments. Its sambal kerang (cockle sambal) and fried chicken are satisfying, but it’s the sumptuous beef curry, with its rich, spice-bathed sauce, that is the real highlight here. Drop by this place early: Queues start forming at 7am, and popular dishes tend to run out by 10.30am."

- Terence Toh, Tatler Dining Editor

Nasi Lemak Tanglin | Tang Lin Food Court, Stall No 6, Jalan Cenderasari, Kuala Lumpur | +6019-397 2781 | Order through Grab

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6. Nasi Lemak Bumbung, Seapark

"Operating for more than 20 years, this place offers fast, 'just nice' portions perfect for a light dinner or supper. Its chicken is fried to perfection with Indian spices, with the skin taking on a muruku-like texture and crunchiness."

- Lainey Loh, Digital Director

Nasi Lemak Bumbung | 6, Jalan 21/11b, Sea Park, Petaling Jaya, Selangor | +6011-2311 3576 

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