By Vanishaa Vasudhevan

Savour the Spice: 13 Must-Try Indian Restaurants in KL & PJ for an Authentic Culinary Journey

A spoonful of curry and a dash of love, that's what make Indian food divine.

Indian food has always held a special place in the hearts and palates of people around the world. The people of Malaysia, especially, share a deep and abiding love for Indian food. 

The never-ending love story between Malaysians and Indian cuisine started way back in the 15th century and the reasons behind this affection are as diverse and vibrant as the gastronomy itself. From the bustling streets of Kuala Lumpur to the tranquil villages of Penang, the flavours of India have woven themselves into the fabric of Malaysian culinary culture, leaving an indelible mark on the nation’s gastronomic landscape.

Boasting a delightful fusion of spices and a diverse array of ingredients, Desi food possesses an unparalleled uniqueness of balancing between the right amount of sweet, sour, salty, bitter, and spicy flavours that sets it apart. However, it would be inaccurate to generalise that all Indian dishes are similar. If your understanding of Indian food is limited to just the Northern and Southern cooking styles, you’ve only discovered the tip of the iceberg that this culinary tradition has to offer. Hence, we present to you a distinct chapter of the epic narrative of Indian food couture. 

13 Indian Restaurants to Explore in KL & PJ

Passage Thru India

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Situated in the heart of KL, Passage Through India is a premier upscale Indian restaurant renowned for its diverse array of Northern and Southern Indian delicacies. Having started its journey in 1994, this steadfast establishment now embarks on its third decade as a Michelin-Select Indian restaurant in 2023, promising patrons an authentic culinary expedition through India—including the very essence of spices, curries, and masalas.

The extensive menu boasts a diverse selection of traditional Indian delights, including tandoori, naan, and roti baked in the coal-fired oven. From aromatic biryani to succulent palak paneer and their renowned crab masala, the menu tantalises every palate. To top it off, the owner, who is also an artist, has adorned the walls and ceilings with captivating murals, imparting a vibrant yet cosy cottage ambience, making it the perfect backdrop to any memories you plan on making. 

Address: 4, Jalan Delima, Off, Jln Bukit Bintang, 50400 Kuala Lumpur

Opening Hours: 11:30 am –3 pm, 6 –10 pm (Wednesday to Friday) | 11:30 am –10 pm (Saturday and Sunday) | 11:30 am –3 pm, 6:30 –10 pm (Monday) | 11:30 am –3 pm, 6 –10 pm (Tuesday)


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It’s time for some tingle on your taste buds—Frangipaani is situated in the bustling dining destination of The Republik, nestled in the heart of Damansara Heights. It is a Michelin Guided restaurant 2024 that promises to wow your tastebuds with its authentic Indian cuisine, offering a vibrant exploration of one of the world’s most diverse culinary domains.

Presenting a menu that sets itself apart, from cherished Indian classics to carefully curated Anglo-Indian recipes native to Goa, every dish promises a sensory experience like never before. Pairing their delectable offerings with fine wines and homemade refreshments, the ambience seamlessly blends Malaysia’s lush greenery with the colonial charm of British India. Whether you fancy yourself a spice-seeker, planning a romantic evening, or simply enjoying a night out with friends, Frangipaani caters to every occasion. 

Address: The Republik, Lot No.M.03, Mezzanine Floor, Jalan Medan Setia 1, Bukit Damansara, 50490 Kuala Lumpur

Opening Hours: 11:30 am –3 pm, 6 –11 pm (Monday to Thursday) | 11:30 am –3:30 pm, 6 –11:30 pm (Friday to Sunday)


best indian restaurants in kl

Nadodi is a name that resonates with passionate food enthusiasts not only in Malaysia but also across the region. Securing a coveted spot on Asia’s 50 Best Restaurants 51-100 List from 2021 to 2023, this esteemed establishment is renowned for its sophisticated South Indian cuisine, seamlessly weaving culinary influences from Kerala, Tamil Nadu, and Sri Lanka. The restaurant’s name, which translates to ‘nomad,’ pays homage to the historical journey of Kerala’s nomadic tribes across the ancient land bridge to Sri Lanka. It serves as a testament to the idea that food, like people, knows no borders.

Led by Chef Yavhin Siriwardhana, Nadodi showcases the beauty of often-overlooked ingredients. He skillfully crafts colourful tasting menus that offer a journey through South India, Sri Lanka, and Malaysia, combining authentic flavours with inventive twists paired with wine trail, cocktails and even mocktails. 

Address: Level 7A, Four Seasons Hotel, Jalan Ampang, City Centre, 50450 Kuala Lumpur, Wilayah Persekutuan Kuala Lumpur

Opening Hours: 6 –10 pm (closed on Sunday) 

Gajaa at 8 Royal Indian Cuisine 

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At Gajaa at 8, the name says it all.”Royal Indian Cuisine” comes to life in every aspect of the dining experience. From the majestic atmosphere to the bold flavours, each detail is meticulously crafted to immerse diners in an authentic royal Indian feast. With a commitment to delivering the ultimate Indian culinary journey, Gajaa at 8 offers creative and unique creations on its menu. Whether it’s a birthday celebration or a formal meeting, the ambience and setting provide the perfect backdrop for making an impression.

From the creamy indulgence of butter chicken to the aromatic richness of biryani, there’s a dish to suit every taste bud at Gaaja. Among the classics, the restaurant’s curry stands out—crafted with an array of spices and complemented by meat or vegetables, paired with Thosai—a beloved pancake made from fermented rice and lentils adding a crispy texture to the table. To add a little twist to the cuisine’s versatility, Indian bread varieties like Naan and Roti are presented to enhance the detail of the dining experience along with vegetarian options such as Chana Masala and Baingan Bharta. Gajaa at 8 Royal Indian Cuisine is a next-level dining experience.

Address: No. 8, Lrg Maarof, Bangsar, 59000 Kuala Lumpur, Wilayah Persekutuan Kuala Lumpur

Opening Hours: 12 –2:30 pm, 6 –9:30 pm (Monday to Friday) | 12 –3:30 pm, 6 –10 pm (Saturday and Sunday)

Gin Rik Sha

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Named after the rickshaw, Gin Rik Sha offers a leisurely exploration of family recipes, blending street food influences with modern twists, complemented by creative cocktails. The upscale yet laid-back atmosphere is ideal for weekend gatherings with friends, so be sure to pencil in an outing or two to this joint

Prioritizing nutrition, the dishes showcase organic produce and superfoods like Roasted Pumpkin with Makhani sauce and Hazelnut crumble, as well as a flavorful Lamb burger, catering to both vegetarians and non-vegetarians. Banana leaf also plays a pivotal role in Gin Rik Sha’s standout dish, where baked sea bass rests atop fragrant basmati pulao, encased in a banana leaf parcel. The caramelised onions and crunchy brinjal seeds in the side sambal add an essence of ground spices to the ensemble, enhancing the entire experience. Along with these delightful offerings, desserts such as Kulfi with Caramelised Bananas and Sesame Brittle and Carrot Halwa Silo Pastry Samosas with Black Pepper Ice Cream—which will be devoured in moments—wrap up the meal on a high note.

Address: 132, Jalan Kasah Medan Damansara, Bukit Damansara, 50490 Kuala Lumpur, Wilayah Persekutuan Kuala Lumpur

Opening Hours: 4 pm –12 am (Wednesday to Friday) | 11:30 am –3 pm, 5 pm –12 am (Saturday) | 11 am – 9:30 pm (Sunday) 

Bombay Palace

best indian restaurants in kl

Picture this: nestled in a beautifully restored colonial bungalow, Bombay Palace’s Malaysian branch shines like a mansion. Glowing with warm yellow lights and royalty-worthy interiors, they are also part of one of the world’s largest chains of North Indian restaurants. And guess what? They don’t just serve incredible North Indian cuisine; they also host live music nights featuring Tablas and Sitars to keep you entertained while you dine. Now, that’s an immersive experience.

With exclusive specialities up their sleeve, the restaurant sets the tone for a fine dining experience in the city centre, one that is fit for a king. It includes the royal banquet for two, hot-cold appetisers, Indian bread, seafood specialities chicken specialities, lamb specialities, Shakahari Bhojan (Vegetarian meal), Basmati specialities along with a wide range of both alcoholic and non-alcoholic beverages, so you can sip and savour every moment.

Address: Life Centre, 20, Jln Sultan Ismail, Kuala Lumpur, 50250 Kuala Lumpur, Federal Territory of Kuala Lumpur

Opening Hours: 12 – 2:30 pm, 6:30 – 10:30 pm (opens daily)

Tasty Chapati Jalan Ipoh

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While on a mission to find the best Indian cuisine, we found that Northern Indian or Mughlai cuisine traces its roots back to the Persian-speaking Moghuls, who held sway over India centuries ago. Their opulent lifestyle, penchant for luxury, and refined sense of taste are echoed in the rich, complex flavours, and creamy textures that characterise this cuisine.

Tasty Chapati beautifully brings it out through their food couture by embedding the two different camps into one culinary presentation in both vegetarian and non-vegetarian varieties. Starting with their Methi Fish, Butter Chicken, Mutton Masala, Sizzling Tava Masala Vege to crispy Lahori Lacha Paratha, everything here contributes to the complex dimensions of ground spices. To end your meal with a feel of Moghul royals, don’t miss out on the Badam and Pistachio Kulfi. These cold, creamy treats perfectly capture the essence of Mughal indulgence. With a menu boasting rich, complex flavours, Tasty Chapathi pays homage to royal cuisine, making every bite a journey back to the opulent era of Mughal royalty.

Address: Viva Residency, Jalan Suppiah Pillay, Jalan Ipoh, 51200 Kuala Lumpur, Wilayah Persekutuan Kuala Lumpur

Opening Hours: 11 am – 10:30 pm (opens daily) 

Barbeque Nation

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While mastering the grill might not be everyone’s forte, at Barbeque Nation, you can still enjoy tender meats and flavourful vegetarian options infused with Indian barbecue goodness. Whether you’re a fan of charred perfection or smoky delights, Barbeque Nation promises a satisfying experience for all barbecue enthusiasts, offering distinctive All-You-Can-Eat barbeque skewers and a buffet line. 

Setting itself apart from the rest, the restaurant introduces the concept of DIY dining, allowing patrons to actively participate in the crafting of their meals. And once you’re done devouring to your heart’s desire, there are assorted delicacies like Cheese Cake, Strawberry Slice Cake, Blueberry Mousse, and Pandan Panna Cotta along with an exclusive dessert bar that serves ice creams like Kulfi to complete the meal The best part is, you get an unlimited feast on all of the seat Barbeque Nation. 

Address: Level 9, Elite, Pavilion Kuala Lumpur, 168, Jln Bukit Bintang, Bukit Bintang, 55100 Kuala Lumpur

Opening Hours: 12 – 4:30 pm, 6 – 11 pm (opens daily)

Yarl @Heritage Row


Another Sri Lankan fusion found, thanks to Yarl and their mission to introduce you to the amazing flavours of Sri Lanka. Yarl began humbly as a small stall in Brickfields, aiming to introduce authentic Jaffna-style cuisine to locals and now successfully opened 3 different branches. Its focus is on northern Sri Lankan comfort food that shares similarities with South Indian cuisine. 

From spicy curries to comforting breakfast delights, they’ve got it all Their menu features familiar dishes like Thosai and Idli, with lunch sets offering vegetarian and meat options on a Thali Set, which is the Banana Leaf meal. In the evening, Yarl transitions to a semi-fine dining joint with exclusive selections packed with Kottu, Varai, Poriyal, and Odiyaal Kool. While some menu items may seem unfamiliar, brief explanations are provided in the menu. With its simple layout, Yarl welcomes both first-timers and Sri Lankan food enthusiasts alike. At Yarl, it’s all about bringing the vibrant and diverse tastes of Sri Lankan cuisine right to your plate. 

Address: No 24, Asian Heritage Row, Jalan Doraisamy, 50300 Kuala Lumpur, Wilayah Persekutuan Kuala Lumpur

Opening Hours: 9 am–10 pm (opens daily) 

Kayra Authentic Kerala Cuisine

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Long established and deeply rooted— Kayra, the culinary gem tucked in the heart of Bangsar, offers an exhilaratingly distinctive menu that transcends traditional South Indian fare. With its latest creations, Kayra invites diners on a gastronomic adventure unlike any other in Kuala Lumpur. Despite their willingness to get creative, Kayra remains grounded in the soulfulness of centuries-old tastes, textures, and traditions, that have been passed on along in their three generations of daily life since 1949 and being a Michelin-select restaurant for 2023 and 2024, honouring the essence of South Indian fare in every dish.

The restaurant beckons meat lovers, vegetarians, and vegans alike with its innovative take on authentic Kerala cuisine. Start your meal with the playful Kerala Dahi Puri—a delightful combination of crispy rice shells filled with creamy tapioca, drenched in tamarind and sweet yoghurt sauce, accompanied by refreshing Tomato Rasam shots. Whenever you’re sharing, explore the Vazhappu cutlets, featuring banana blossoms and sweet potatoes, or the savoury Chemmeen Ada dumplings filled with steamed baby shrimp and Chilli Masala paste. Don’t miss their signature Fish Moilee Biryani—a decadent masterpiece featuring a grilled sea bass or snapper atop fragrant basmati rice. Come experience the magic of Kayra and indulge in a taste of Kerala unlike any other.

Address: F-8, Bangsar Village, 1, Jalan Telawi 1, Bangsar Baru, 59100 Kuala Lumpur, Wilayah Persekutuan Kuala Lumpur

Opening Hours: 11:30 am – 10 pm (opens daily)

Mollagaa Restaurant

mollagaa restaurant

When the urge for spice and heat kicks in, Mollagaa emerges as the go-to destination. Situated on Leboh Ampang, this hotspot lives up to its fiery name, meaning “chilli” in Tamil, offering a compelling journey through rustic flavours and vibrant spices. Since its establishment in 2018, Mollagaa has garnered a reputation for its commitment to authenticity, importing spices directly from India and employing a team of dedicated chefs native to the region. 

From beloved classics like the crowd-pleasing banana leaf sets to lesser-known delicacies such as the Nalli Biryani and the Nool parotta with chicken Salna set, the restaurant is a must-visit if you’re on the hunt for the best Indian restaurants in KL. Vegetarians can delight in Mollagaa’s crunchy vegetable platter and indulge in the unique flavours of South Indian cuisine. The restaurant ensures an unforgettable dining experience for all, with every bite celebrating tradition, passion, and the art of spice. Whether you’re a seasoned fan of South Indian cuisine or an adventurous food lover, Mollagaa promises a culinary journey filled with rich flavours and cultural heritage.

Address: 50A, Lebuh Ampang, City Centre, 50100 Kuala Lumpur, Wilayah Persekutuan Kuala Lumpur

Opening Hours: 11 am – 10 pm (opens daily)



Aliyaa, a cherished haven in Kuala Lumpur for authentic Sri Lankan cuisine since 2008 and a Michelin Guide Bib Gourmand restaurant for 2024. Embracing the essence of the sacred elephant, the restaurant’s ambience is adorned with elegant paintings and soft lighting, creating a captivating dining atmosphere. With recipes steeped in Sri Lankan tradition, and curated by native chefs boasting over 10 years of experience, each dish tells a story of the island’s rich culinary heritage. 

From the sumptuous Colombo-style crab to the fiery Mutton Bones and fluffy appams, Aliyaa’s menu is a feast for the senses. Highlighting the menu is the Sri Lankan Sambal Set, featuring four distinct sambals: Seeni Sambal, Pol Sambal, Karupillay Sambal, and Katta Sambal, each featuring its a unique flavour profile. Pair your meal with a selection of unique drinks from the restaurant’s bar for the perfect culinary experience. Don’t forget to save room for desserts as Aliyaa offers traditional Vatilaapam pudding, a creamy delicacy infused with coconut, brown palm sugar, and aromatic spices. Here, every dish is a celebration of Sri Lankan culture and flavours, promising to delight your senses and leave you craving more.

Address: No 48 G&M, Jalan Medan Setia 2, Bukit Damansara, 50490 Kuala Lumpur

Opening Hours: 12–3 pm, 6–11 pm (opens daily)


Flour KL

Set against a spacious, monochromatic dining room with a glass wall offering glimpses into the bustling kitchen, FLOUR Restaurant stands as a culinary gem that is redefining Indian cuisine with modern European techniques and global ingredients. The restaurant’s chef, who has a deep-rooted reverence for Mother Earth, meticulously curates evolving prix-fixe menus that enlighten diners with each visit. With a profound commitment to natural flavours, every dish is delicately seasoned to allow each ingredient to shine. 

With a menu showcasing a fusion of signature dishes and modern contemporary Indian cuisine, they offer a playful twist on traditional flavours such as charcoal-roasted Pomfret infused with fragrant curry leaves puree, and the Garlic Cheese naan, featuring a delightful chewy texture complemented by Swiss cheese. For mains, the Mutton Biryani steals the show with grass-fed mutton cooked to medium rare perfection, paired flawlessly with basil curd. To conclude, indulge in a dessert presenting a biscuity base with nutty undertones, promising a sublime finish to the meal. With an emphasis on quality ingredients and innovative concepts, FLOUR invites diners to embark on a culinary adventure where every bite tells a story of passion and creativity in the art of fine dining. 

Address: 12, Jalan Kamuning, Off, Jln Imbi, 55100 Kuala Lumpur, Wilayah Persekutuan Kuala Lumpur

Opening Hours: 6:30 – 10:30 pm (Monday, Wednesday and Thursday) | 12 – 2:30 pm, 6:30 – 10:30 pm (Friday to Sunday) | (closed on Tuesday)