The Best Coffee Shops and Cafes in Georgetown, Penang

Wall in one of the cafes in Penang
Wall in one of the cafes in Penang | © Biron Clark / Flickr
Lu Yin Wai

Penang has many cafés frequently visited by the locals and travelers. Each café has its own delicious food and drink specialty and a unique interior that is Instagram-worthy. The cafés are located in Georgetown, one of the UNESCO World Heritage Sites in Malaysia, so it is convenient to have your meals and coffee at these cafés in Penang.

1. ChinaHouse

Bar, Cafe, Restaurant, Fusion

Culture Trip - The Best Bars in Penang Malaysia - China House
© China House

The café is within ChinaHouse, a traditional compound of three heritage buildings linked with an open-air courtyard together with 14 unique spaces. These various spaces provide you food, music, art, and more. You will notice the narrow building is decorated with trendy art pieces. Before you take a seat, have a look at the counter display that holds more than 30 mouth-watering cakes for you to choose from. You can also have a bento set, Western meals, international wine, or coffee to go with your cakes. Visit the art exhibitions and listen to live music while you are there.

2. Lunabar Coffee

Cafe, Dessert, Tea , Coffee, Malaysian, Street Food, Fast Food

Lunabar Coffee is a quiet little space decorated with luscious plants that provide a comfortable atmosphere. It is an ideal place for “me time” in the little garden. Chill out in the cozy café with their hand-brewed coffee, matcha (Japanese green tea) drinks, or hot chocolate. Although there are limited dessert choices to choose from, matchamisu (a combination of matcha and tiramisu) and matcha affogato (matcha ice cream served with matcha sauce) are some of the popular choices by customers. For cake lovers, try the poppy seed lemon cake or the chocolate cheesecake.

3. Moh Teng Pheow

Cafe, Restaurant, Malaysian, Dessert, Asian, Vegetarian, Vegan, Gluten-free, Street Food, Fast Food

Moh Teng Pheow serves delicious homemade Nyonya kuih-muih (bite-sized snacks and desserts). The interior is made into a canteen, decorated with vintage and antiques, where it reminds us of the good old days. You will see how Nyonya kuih-muih are made by hand and displayed at the counter before you grab a seat to have your meals. Before you have kuih-muih, try a delicious bowl of assam laksa (rice noodles in spicy and sour fish broth) and nasi ulam (mixed rice with shredded betel leaf, shallots, carrots, and coconut). Have a plate of assorted kuih-muih as your dessert, including kuih talam (coconut milk layered with pandan).

5. The Alley

Cafe, Dessert, Tea , Coffee, Malaysian, Fast Food, Street Food

Churros with sugar and chocolate sauce.
© Bartosz Luczak / Shutterstock

Walk along the narrow street of Stewart Lane till you see a building which was Kedai Gaharu Keat Seang (a shop that selling praying incense in the past), but has now become The Alley. They serve hot and cold beverages, sandwiches, and in-house desserts. Delight your sweet tooth with a cronut served with warm salted caramel sauce or the popular churros served with five different kinds of dips (chocolate, Nutella, caramel, salted caramel and sugar ‘n cinnamon). There are also various types of cheesecakes for you to try. For drinks, have a cappuccino (served in a kopitiam cup) or affogato (served with Haagen-Dazs vanilla ice cream and topped with chocolate).

6. Awesome Canteen

Cafe, Fusion, Tea , Coffee, Malaysian, Fast Food, Street Food

Awesome Canteen has their second outlet in Sekeping Victoria after the success of their first outlet, which served Paleo meals in Petaling Jaya. The café interior is added to with canteen style metal chairs and tables. You will see skinny trees among the café area that livens up its charming atmosphere. All dishes are made from natural and nutritious proteins, fruits, and vegetables. Try the savory dishes served with sweet potatoes and salad or various kinds of salads as a la carte. Have a cup of Red Tonic, cold brew coffee, or classic hot long black.

7. Bricklin Cafe Bar

Cafe, Fusion, Malaysian, Dessert, Tea , Coffee, Fast Food, Street Food

Bricklin Cafe Bar is located at Hin Bus Depot, a creative space and art gallery where pop-up markets are held on Sundays. Refuel your energy at the café after exploring Hin Bus Depot. Enjoy your afternoon tea while the sun seeps through the glass window on sunny days. Have a warm bagel with ham, a green tea walnut brownie, or coconut strawberry cake to go with your cup of coffee. Savor the Nasi Lemak served with chicken curry or scrambled eggs served on warm toasted bagels as your brunch.

8. Mugshot Cafe

Cafe, Fusion, Tea , Coffee, Malaysian, Street Food, Fast Food

Mugshot Café has the popular bagel muffins and homemade yogurts that you simply can’t wait to savor. There are different kinds of bagel muffins dishes to try, including bagel muffin with bacon and egg, bagel muffin with corned beef and rocket, or bagel muffin cream cheese and smoked salmon. The bagels are toasted in a wood-fired oven before adding in mouth-watering proteins and vegetables. Try various flavors of yogurts such as jackfruit and gula melaka, kiwi and honey, mango and walnuts, or walnuts and raisins. Have fun taking mugshots of you and your friends at the photo booth outside the café.

9. Macallum Connoisseurs

Cafe, Fusion, Tea , Coffee, Malaysian, Fast Food, Street Food

Macallum Connoisseurs has turned what used to be Penang’s largest timber factory into a café that serves a wide range of delicious food and coffee. The industrial theme is kept with natural sunlight as their café interior. Not only do they serve coffee, but they also have a roaster and coffee academy. The barista will let know what coffee beans they have and recommend which to suit your palette. There are various savory dishes, including pasta and meat, to choose from. Try their special coffee spaghetti or tiramisu. If you want to have good coffee, this is the place.

10. 92 Armenian 打铜仔

Cafe, Dessert, Tea , Coffee, Malaysian, Street Food, Fast Food

92 Armenian 打铜仔 is known for serving all kinds of bird-nest desserts. Step back in time to the vintage café and savor the mouth-watering desserts served with tea. The classic bird-nest, Chinese tonic, is incorporated into Chinese desserts and contemporary cakes. Try the popular bird-nest egg tart (a pastry crust with egg custard). Have a go at the bird-nest mango cake with their special bird-nest coconut jelly. You can also buy some bird-nest desserts sold in boxes.

11. 单Café

Cafe, Dessert, Tea , Coffee, Malaysian, Fast Food, Street Food

单Café provides customers with simplicity in regard to their food, service, and interior, as 单means single in Chinese. Get yourself away from the tourist spots in Georgetown and chill out at the cozy café surrounded with luscious green plants and scenic views. Baristas serve four types of single origin coffee beans to be used for brewed coffee. Delight your dessert cravings with chocolate or matcha lava cake served with vanilla ice cream. Latte lovers can try the Hojicha or matcha latte. You can have a browse through the Moon Shop Gallery which displays tropical plants and terrariums.
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