Hello. Apa Khabar.
If you haven’t read my other posts about this trip, please click these titles to read all about it Welcome To Malaysia, Masjid Kapitan Keling, Penang Street Food, Armenian Street Art & Teochew Chendul, Chocolate and coffee Museum, and Cheong Fatt Tze Blue Mansion, Arriving Kuala Lumpur
Today was my first full day in Kuala Lumpur and I had planned to spend the day with my friend Amina. She was going to show me around town a bit, but mostly we were going shopping cos I needed to buy my graduation outfit and she needed an outfit for a fashion event! I was sooo excited because I already knew a few Malay Fashion stores/brands that have a cult following online and I wanted to check them out.
We started the day by taking a Uber to Bangsar Village which is like this hip neighbourhood where the young people like hanging out, so they had lots of boutique cafe’s and restaurants as well as a shopping mall. One of the stores I wanted to visit was Fashion Valet owned by the ‘instafamous’ and ‘Forbes Asia under 30’ lady, Vivy Yusof and her hubby.
My friend said their smaller branch was in Bangsar Village mall so we planned to have brunch and head there. For food we decided on this restaurant called Kafe Chawan. I really liked the vibe of the place, it had like a ‘cabin in the woods’ feel to the decor all down to the plants. We opted to seat outside because IMO that is the best location in a restaurant—you get to people watch, there is less food smell and so on. I gave Amina the liberty of ordering for us, she explained the dishes to me and we decided on the spread below.
Dining Tip: Seriously I feel like the best decision when you travel abroad and are interested in trying out authentic food that even the locals approve of, is to have them order for you if you can.
Another tip is to ask the waiter to recommend to you what’s popular on their menu—tried and tested method with great results!
So we had the Cassava and dipping sauce below and a bunch of other dishes—so I’m not sure I remember correctly what we had, but I will update with the exact names by tomorrow insha Allah.
What I do remember though is the taste! First off the anchovies and nuts thing they serve at MAlay restaurants adds a lot of Shazam to the meals in a good way! The yellow rolls had a chewy texture and gosh with the curry on the side, I savoured every bit to it—reminded me of this northern Nigeria pancake called Waina.
After our meal we headed into the mall and made a beeline to Fashion Valet, and I kid you not, as soon as we got into the store, we were like some giggly fangirls. Amina kept pointing at the outfits that have been featured on Vivy’s instagram posts and we just kept gushing about how cute the clothes looked and what goes with what etc!
We tried on a few outfits but nothing felt right for graduation to me. I was looking for an outfit that was versatile and comfortable, because although it would be my graduation outfit, I planned on making it a work attire too.
After a few look around, we decided it was better to head to the Pavillion store because it was bigger and there was going to be more options there as the mall was massive—see picture at the end of post. On our way out of the mall, I spotted this Bakery and saw they had Matcha Cakes and I had to try it.
One thing I miss about living in London is the idea of everything I liked being accessible.
Since moving back to Nigeria, I am learning to find new things i liked but it will take some getting used to. I did find a cool dessert place that I want to try out though! So review coming up soon insha Allah.
Back to the Matcha Cake, my god it was yummy! If you still haven’t joined the ‘Matcha flavoured’ food craze then you are missing out! I do understand that it can be an acquired taste, but when you find a place that does it well—hint hint such as Shibuya in Chinatown, London—then you will appreciate some fine culinary wonder.
When we arrived at the Pavillion’s, I was greatly impressed. This was like Malaysia’s Fashion Mecca, and every store that wanted to make an impact in Malaysia had to be there.
It was crowded, and busy, and shiny and sparkly and luxurious and everything that I want my shopping streets to look like. I was reminded somewhat of the Westfield Mall meet Oxford Street in London, but with just more buzz!
Because we had a somewhat late start to the day and encountered a bit of traffic, we decided to check out Fashion Valet first and Some western stores such as Zara and Uniqlo, to see what we could get for our events. I decided to go with the safe option of a store I knew because we didn’t have time to try out a new brand and decide on what to pick. Fashion Valet here, didn’t disappoint as well, I got to try on a lot more clothes and managed to get a few work outfits as well as potential options for grad.
I also found a really gorge top that was a size too small, but I couldn’t resist the urge so I bought it with the intention of losing weight to fit into it. Still on that!
So after Zara, we decided to have dinner!
You see I introduced Amina to Korean Food back when we were living in London and she has liked it ever since. So we thought what better way than to venture out of the Malay food scene and try out Korean.
Plus it has become somewhat of a tradition for me to find the nearest Korean restaurant in the city I am visiting and checking it out because being in Nigeria, I rarely taste Korean food!
Gosh I miss you London.
So we ordered the basics—Kimchi Bokkeumbap (fried rice), Ddeokbokki (spicy rice cakes), Ramyeon(Instant noodles, think indomie), and of course we got the complimentary side dishes which in this case was Kkagduggi (Radish Kimchi) and Miso Soup!
This is almost always what we order when we go to a Korean restaurant together.
Side note: So in London they serve this fusion version of ddeokbokki which is called Rabokki basically Ramyeon cooked with the ddeokbokki and it is sooo yum! and Amina’s fave Korean food. Sadly because it is a “London thing”, we had to DIY it here but all the same, tasted good!
Just to give you a visual of what we were dealing with, this is a photo of about a quarter of the huge mall I had to navigate to find my outfit! After dinner, it was already getting so late and I still didn’t feel like I had the right look I wanted for grad. So we decided to split up and meet at Uniqlo in an hour before heading home.
I went back to Uniqlo because I remembered seeing these dresses that Uniqlo collaborated on with the British Muslim Designer Hana Tajima. I didn’t have enough time cos they were about to close so I picked two options, a plain black one and a blue one with cream stripes!
I was satisfied with my purchase and Amina too found an outfit for her event so we decided to head home! But unfortunately it was rush hour which made it soooo hard for our Uber to arrive and find us and we got stuck in a traffic jam on the way home. I got to experience Kuala Lumpur traffic, and it was very similar to the Lagos traffic jams.
But Alhamdulillah we made it safe and sound. Thank you so much Mina for spending that day with me, it was soo much fun and I was glad, it felt like we were back in Uni again <3 <3
Stay tuned for the next post, it was more touristy and no shopping!
Find me on twitter and instagram @planetmeera
Thank you for reading…xx!!