History, culture and a thriving café scene are three ways to describe historical Malacca. Whether you’re strolling along Jonker Street or snapping photographs of centuries-old colonial buildings, everyone needs an occasional break. Try taking yours at one of these 10 best coffee shops.
Malacca attracts tourists for its UNESCO-listed old town, colonial architecture and vibrant Jonker Street. Culture Trip identifies the best coffee shops in Malacca, including converted heritage buildings, an almost hidden café and where to taste tom yum chicken waffles.
Jonker Street’s Calanthe Art Café combines an arty coffee shop with Malacca’s widest selection of drinks. Having been established for more than a decade, it’s the go-to place for coffee-loving Malaccans. Quirky decorations (including television used as a fish tank) fill the Bohemian interior. But this café’s highlight is their coffee. Expect no less than 13 types representing each state in Malaysia, along with old favourites like lattes and cappuccinos. Light snacks and Asian-style meals (try the calanthe laksa) are available too. Culture Trip recommends stopping by after a day sightseeing.
Fresh food, locally sourced produce and globally imported coffee beans are three characteristics of this coffee shop in Malacca. Halal-friendly Cofeology gets all their ingredients from local farmers to create tasty fusion meals. Coffee from only the highest quality beans give rich tastes. Combine both, and you have an ideal spot for lunch while directly supporting the regional economy.
Heng Huat is among the oldest coffee shops in Malacca, dating back almost 90 years. This family-run kopitiam (Malaysian-style coffee shop) has served iced drinks and Hainanese dishes for generations. Expect rock-bottom prices, mouth-watering wanton noodles and refreshing iced coffee and tea. Culture Trip recommends Heng Huat for a local-style breakfast.
Sat inside one of Jonker Street’s heritage buildings, The Daily Fix ranks among the more popular coffee shops with tourists in Malacca. The interior uses antique decorations to create a nostalgic atmosphere as well as upstairs art exhibitions. Expect comfy seats, affordable drinks and a handful of mouth-watering desserts (think homemade brownies and pandan pancakes). A drink in this café provides the perfect opportunity to see inside one of Malacca’s heritage buildings.
The British-inspired Mods Café near Jonker Street doubles up as a micro-roaster. Baristas lightly roast beans over charcoal before serving the drinks out of the back of a vintage Volkswagen bus. Order a drip coffee or strong espresso to start a day of sightseeing. Culture Trip recommends at least an hour inside this coffee shop, with a drink and slice of tiramisu. And if you want to geek up on the roasting process or order something special, speak with the chatty baristas.
If you’re looking for a quiet café in Malacca away from the chaos of Jonker Street, head to Alley No.5. The coffee shop sits along an almost hidden alley in a peaceful part of the old town. Relaxing music creates a welcoming ambience, the plants and décor make it homey. Add in a chatty owner, Instagram-worthy decorations and lots of friendly cats. Grab a seat outside or sit on the tall stools near the bar and order a coffee and slice of their mouth-watering homemade cheesecake.
Limau-Limau Café in Temple Street is a more affluent coffee shop providing a decent selection of drinks and food. A chandelier hangs above the bar as artwork from local artists covers the walls. Soft jazz serenades customers. Apart from coffee and tea, this coffee shop in Malacca serves milkshakes, freshly squeezed juices and draft beer. Drop by for a late lunch (recommend mango and chicken focaccia and banana pancakes for dessert) after an afternoon on Jonker Street.
Locahouz serves a variety of ‘creative drinks’ found nowhere else in Malacca. From the outside, the café looks like someone’s house. Bundles of welcome signs dangling by bits of string hang from the gate. The artistic interior’s old-school style is worth a few Instagram shots too. Order from their menu of supersized drinks and grab a bite to eat (try the pumpkin burger or durian cheesecake). This is one of our favourite spots in old Malacca for a quirky brunch.
The trendy Backlane Coffee Shop is on the ground floor of Fomecs Boutique Hotel. Hotel guests sip on espressos in the morning while local office workers have lattes during their lunch hour. Bare brick walls covered with white-paint and abstract art sit next to the almost floor-to-ceiling windows. Board games and magazines are readily available, which makes this café a perfect place to spend a rainy afternoon.
Siam Recipe (formerly Paddles and Beans) ranks among the top hipster coffee shops in Malacca. The cosy spot lies approximately 10 minutes on foot from Jonker Street and packs a culinary punch with their unusual cuisine. Homemade waffles are their speciality, which are the focus of a strange battle between sweet and savoury. Sweet ones include banana and chocolate fudge. But the savoury pancakes found nowhere else in Malaysia are the real highlight. Try the fried chicken waffle with peanut butter or tom yum chicken waffle – they taste much better than they sound!