Penang Food Lovers Guide
The streets of Penang are known to be a food paradise, due to its diversity in ethnicity, culture and religion. The multi-ethnic, “rojak” population brings forth such celebrated variety in Penang’s street and hawker food. There is no lack of food options here, and is difficult to find a store that falls short of a rating lower than “delicious!” Here’s our list of top things to eat in Penang, and where to find them!
Char Kway Teow @ Jalan Siam
Char Kway Teow translates to “stir fried rice cake strips” and is a hugely popular dish in Malaysia, Singapore and Indonesia. Char Kway Teow may be served with shrimp, bloody cockles, lap cheong (Chinese sausage), eggs, bean sprouts and mixed with soy sauce. A sign of tasty char kway teow is the distinctly delicious aroma arising from the noodles being fried over high heat in a Chinese wok.
Address: Siam road, near intersection of Anson road and Siam road
Opening hours: Tue – Sun, 3:00pm till finish
Buses: The nearest bus stop is at Dato Kramat Road and Anson Road. # 11, # 201, # 202, # 203, # 204, # 206, # 301, # 302 and # 502 pass through Dato Kramat Road while # 10 and # 104 pass through Anson Road.
Prawn Mee @ Lebuh Presgrave
Also known as Hokkien mee, the infamous yellow stir fried noodles are steeped in aromatic stock made of prok bones and prawn heads. The mouthwatering dish – comprising noodles and thick ‘bee hoon’ (vermicelli) – has juicy prawns, squid, pork belly strips, egg and crunchy fried pork lard that makes everything taste extra scrumptious. Prawn Mee is usually served with sambal chilli and a squeeze of lime juice for an added zingy flavor!
Address: Lebuh Presgrave, 10300 Penang, Malaysia
Opening hours: 4.30pm – 12midnight, closed on Thursdays
Buses: # 302, # 401
Oyster Omelette @ Kedai Kopi Lam Ah
Usually a night market favourite, the oyster omelette is essentially an omelette cooked with small oysters. Starch is usually mixed into the oyster batter, giving the wrap a thicker consistency to hold to oysters. Spicy chili sauce mixed with lime juice is usually eaten with the omelette!
Address: Lebuh Chulia, George Town, 10450 George Town, Pulau Pinang, Malaysia
Opening hours: 10:30am-4:30pm, closed on Sundays
Bak Kut Teh @ Kedai Kopi Ho Ping
A meat dish cooked in broth, Bak Kut Teh is highly popular in Malaysia and Singapore with the predominant Teochew and Hokkien population. Translating into “meat bone tea”, BKT is a broth of meaty pork ribs simmered in a stew of herbs and spices for hours. It is usually eaten with rice or noodles and often served with youtiao (strips of fried dough) for dipping into the soup.
Address: Jalan Penang, George Town, Pulau Pinang, Malaysia
Buses: 10, 11, 101, 103, 104, 201, 202, 203, 204, 206, 301 and 302
Curry Fish Head @ Hameediyah Restaurant
Fish head curry is a dish in Singaporean and Malaysian cuisine with Indian and Chinese origins. The head of a red snapper is semi-stewed in a Kerala-style curry with assorted vegetables such as okra and eggplants. It is usually served with either rice or bread, or as a shared dish.
Address: Haemeediyah Restaurant
164, Lebuh Campbell, George Town, 10200 George Town, Pulau Pinang, Malaysia
Mon-Tues: 10am – 10pm
Wed: 10am – 10pm, 11pm – 12am
Thurs: 10am – 10pm
Sun: 10am – 10pm
Buses: 10, 11, 101, 103, 104, 201, 202, 203, 204, 206, 301 and 302
Penang Chendol @ Penang Road Famous Teochew Chendul
Chendol is a famous dessert in Penang: shaved ice filled with chewy green rice flour jelly (chendol), red beans, fresh coconut milk and a splash of gula melaka (brown sugar) syrup.
Address: Penang Road Famous Teochew Chendul
27 & 29 Lebuh Keng Kwee, 10100 Georgetown, Penang, Malaysia
Mon-Fri: 10:30am – 7pm
Sat-Sun: 10am – 7:30pm
Lok Lok @ Pulau Tikus Market
Lok Lok (“Dip dip”) is a really fun food concept. Essentially, it is a communal steamboat where one gets seated next to random strangers that you share the same hot pot of water with to cook ingredients. Ingredients such as oyster, shrimps, fishballs and meat are spread on sticks.
Address: Jalan Pasar, Pulau Tikus Market
Buses: 10, 101, 102, 104 and 304
Kafe St Loo Beef Noodle Soup
Amongst the handful of well-received Beef Noodles in Penang is Kafe St Loo Beef Noodles, which was previously located at Chulia Street and is now at Carnavon Street. Kafe St Loo is a classic traditional kopitiam style restaurant completed devoted to selling Beef Noodles and Fried Oyster Omelette. The family-run business has a reputation as one of Penang’s best places for Beef Noodles. First timers might want to go for the basic- Beef Soup Noodles: a subtle broth with rich Beefy flavor served with abundance of Beef wholesomeness.
Address: 156, Lebuh Carnarvon, 10100, Georgetown, Penang.
Opening Hours: 10 am to 9:30 pm. Closed on Wednesdays.
Phone: +60 1-2409 0696
Blue Mansion Restaurant (Cheong Fatt Tze Mansion)
This quaint boutique hotel occupies a 19th-century mansion that mixes Hakka and Teochew architecture styles. It’s 5 minutes’ walk from Penang State Museum and Art Gallery, and a 14-minute walk from both Fort Cornwallis and the Khoo Kongsi temple.
Recommended: Roti Canna, Nasi Lemak, English Breakfast
Address: 14, Leith St, Georgetown, 10200 George Town, Penang.
Business Hours: 12-3pm (Lunch), 6-10pm (Dinner)
Phone: +60 4-262 0006
The night market comprises of a handful of pushcart stalls with tables & chairs parked along the roadside for customers to have a fuss-free meal.
Recommended: Poh Piah, Wanton Mee, Char Kway Teow, Ice Kachang
Address: Lebuh Chulia, George Town, 10200 George Town, Pulau Pinang, Malaysia
Opening Hours: 6pm – 12am
Red Hat Auntie’s Char Kway Teow @ Kafe Heng Huat
This stall is located in front of Kafe Heng Huat. The waiting line is usually considerably long as the Char Kuay teow is one of the best in Penang. The downside is that the price is considered high for Penang street food standards. On the other hand, a great thing about this coffee shop is that you can order from the other street food vendors along the street and have it served to you inside the coffeeshop.
Address: 108, Lorong Selamat, George Town, 10400 George Town, Pulau Pinang, Malaysia
Phone: +60 16 269 2222
888 Hokkien Mee
888 福建面 stall is one of the famous stall which served prawn mee where it is just located nearby the iconic Komtar tower and along the same road as Kwong Wah Yit Poh newspaper.
The hokkien mee here is simply popular and it is one of a must to go for when you are there. Dine them with the noodles swimming in a thick, flavourful broth and filled with the prawn taste in it.
Address: Off Lebuh McNair, corner lot 67-A Lebuh Presgrave, Georgetown, Penang.
Business Hours: 4:30pm to 12:00 midnight (Closed on Thurs)
The Mugshot in Georgetown is conveniently located on Chulia street right in the heart of the backpacker district.
Address: 302, Lebuh Chulia, George Town, 10200 George Town, Pulau Pinang, Malaysia
Business Hours: 8am – 12am
Phone: +60 12-405 6276
Penang Road Famous Teochew Cendol @ Lebuh Keng Kwee
Many call this the best chendol in Penang! Operating from just a small push cart, throngs of customers hang about slurping down their bowls of cool chendol in the hot sun. Business is always brisk and good here!
Address: 10450 Goerge Town, George Town, Pulau Penang, Malaysia
Business Hours: 10.30am – 7pm
Phone: +60 4 262 6002
Famous Penang Road Assam Laksa @ Joo Hooi Café
One of the first things most people think about when visiting Penang is it’s tasty laksa. Without a doubt, Joo Hooi Café will give you the best assam laksa experience!
Address: 475, Jalan Penang, George Town, 10450 George Town, Pulau Pinang, Malaysia
Opening Hours: 11am – 5.30pm (Closed Thursday)
Batu Feringghi Night Market
When people mention Batu Ferringhi, two things come to mind: beach & night market. The Batu Ferringhi night market, otherwise known as the sidewalk bazaar, proves to be one of the area’s major pulls.
Address: Jalan Pantai Batu, Taman Pantai Batu, 11200 Tanjong Bungah, Pulau Pinang, Malaysia
Opening Hours: 7pm – 12am
Bangkok Lane Mee Goreng @ Seng Lee Coffeeshop
Seng Lee Cafe is a coffee shop located at the junction of Burmah Road and Bangkok Lane. It is known for it’s mouth watering mee goring!
Address: Seng Lee Café, 270, Jalan Burma, Georgetown, 10050, Pulau Pinang, Pulau Pinang, 10050, Malaysia
Opening hours: 8am – 6.30pm (Closed Mondays)
Phone: +60 16 485 7859
Sister’s Char Kway Teow
Another unsurprising highly recommended CKT stall in Penang, Sister’s Char Kway Teow lures customers from all of Malaysia.
Address: 185, Jalan Macalister, George Town, 10400 George Town, Pulau Pinang, Malaysia
Opening Hours: 8.30am – 4pm (Closed Monday)
Padang Brown Food Complex
Padang Brown Food Complex, previously Padang Brown Hawker Centre (Tapak Penjaja Padang Brown), is one of the older hawker centres in George Town, Penang. For many decades, Padang Brown was synonymous with good street food. You just have to mention “The Padang” and any Penangite worth his salt will know which padang you are talking about
Address: Jalan Perak, 10400 George Town, Pulau Pinang, Malaysia
Opening hours: 5.30pm – 12am
Hidden in heart of Georgetown, The Alley sits next to the famous tourist hot spot- Godness of Mercy Temple or known as Guan Yin Teng to the locals. The obscure location and unappealing exterior making it hard for the public to notice.
Address: 5, Stewart Lane, 10200 Georgetown, Penang
Opening hours: 12pm – 12am
Phone: +604 261 3879
Busy Bodhi Café
The Smallest and Coziest Cafe in George Town: This neat café is named the “BusyBody Cafe” because it is the perfect lepak place for being a busybody. Just sit down, grab a coffee, put your phone aside and watch as people and bicycles pass by.
Address: 64, Lebuh Acheh, Pinang George Town, Pulau Pinang, Malaysia
Phone: +60 12-497 5599
Hon Kei Food Corner
Hon Kei Food Corner previously was a stall in Ho Ping Coffee Shop at the junction of Penang Road and Jalan Kampong Malabar selling famous Bak Moi (Pork Porridge).
Address: 45, Lorong Kampung Malabar, George Town, 10200 George Town, Pulau Pinang, Malaysia
Opening Hours: 9am – 12am
Phone: +60 12 443 5559
Kopi-C Cafe, ChinaHouse
Chinahouse, a unique standalone, consists of 3 heritage buildings connected together, stringing together some 14 communal spaces comprising of bakery, shops, restaurants and galleries in an alley way concept.
The most famous space within would have to be KOPI C. Well-loved for its daily freshly baked cakes in assorted creative flavours, this cafe is located at the main entrance right when you step into Chinahouse. Kopi C is housed in a heritage old styled space with lots of long dark wooden tables, framed by black and white art pieces, beamed in by sunlight.
Address: 153 & 155 Lebuh Pantai, Georgetown
Opening Hours: 10:00 – 24:00
Phone: +604 263 7299
Wai Kee Char Siew
Wai Kei Cafe sells a variety of different roasted dishes, BBQ pork (charsiew), Roasted pork, Pork sausages, duck, vegetables. Be prepared to wait for there is usually a long line waiting to be chomp up these delicious snacks.
Address; Lebuh Chulia, George Town, 10200 George Town, Pulau Pinang, Malaysia
Opening Hours: 11am – 2.30pm
Mews Café Penang in Muntri House Hotel may look like a hip but traditional kopitiam (coffee shop), although its laidback ambiance reminds us heavily of an Australian beachside bistro for surfers. An unpretentious place alive with personality, at its heart this café is a proud and firmly-rooted local business, determined to champion the island’s fiercely-competitive culinary scene.
Address: Muntri Mews, 77, Jalan Muntri, Georgetown, Penang, Malaysia
Opening Hours: 07:00 – 23:00
Phone: +604 263 5125
Little Penang Street Market
Little Penang Street Market is a non-profit making community venture, organised by a small volunteer committee. It is organised under the umbrella of Penang Arts Council, a registered society founded in 1954.
Address: 7, Jalan Penang, George Town, 10000 George Town, Pulau Pinang, Malaysia
The Canteen at Chinahouse
Indisputably one of our favourite bars in Penang, The Canteen At ChinaHouse presents nightly live acts playing a diverse selection of music.
Address: 183, Lebuh Victoria, George Town, 10300 George Town, Pulau Pinang, Malaysia
Opening Hours: 9am – 2am
Address: B3A, Upper Penang Road, George Town, 10000 George Town, Pulau Pinang, Malaysia
Phone: +60 4263 6868
Ivy’s Nyonya Cuisine
Ivy’s Nyonya Cuisine which is tucked away in a pre-war converted house located at Chow Thye Road (Off Jalan Burma). The cosy restaurant is run by a husband and wife team Mr Tan and Ms Ivy.
Address: 58, Jalan Chow Thye, George Town, 10050 George Town, Pulau Pinang, Malaysia
Opening Hours: 12pm – 3pm, 6pm – 9pm (Closed Mondays)
The Den – Macalister Mansion
The Den is a place to relax and unwind with a glass of quality whisky or cigar. Specialist in Single Cask and Single Malt whiskies which are sourced from renowned distilleries around the world together with a wide range of cigars. Come with us on a global whisky adventure from Scotland to Japan.
Address: 228, Jalan Macalister, George Town, 11400 George Town, Pulau Pinang, Malaysia
Opening hours: 5.00pm – 1.00am (Mon – Thurs, Sun), 5.00pm – 2.00am (Fri & Sat)
Phone: +60 4-228 3888
Talk Talk Wine Bar & Lounge
Sit back and relax in this boutique styled rustic, jazzy wine bar & lounge.
Address: 2-G-5, Bangunan Lip Sin, Lebuh Pekaka Satu, 11700 Sungai Dua, Penang, Malaysia
Opening Hours: 4pm – 1am
That Little Wine Bar
Devoted equally to stunning wine and exceptional food, That Little Wine Bar brings its customers a sophisticated dining experience. Nestled in a cluster of restored pre-war buildings, That Little Wine Bar offers a warm and enchanting dining ambience with loads of character. With over 100 varieties of wine, complement our regular menu comprising delicious European dishes and tapas, and our specials board, you are sure to enjoy yourself here.
Address: 54, Jalan Chow Thye, George Town, 10050 George Town, Pulau Pinang, Malaysia
Opening Hours: Closesd Sundays
Phone: +604 226 8182
Previously a stable, the building has since gentrified to a classy, elegant wine lounge. Ground floor is a restaurant with a small wine-cellar attached while the upper floor consists of a cozy and homey area with comfortable couches; perfect for a glass of wine or to spend your evening with your loved ones. The four-month old restaurant does not have a very comprehensive menu but more than sufficient to pair with your wines.
Address: 19-19A, Leith St, George Town, 10200 George Town, Pulau Pinang, Malaysia
Phone: +60 4262 1011
Chok Kee Porridge Cafe 粥記咖啡店
(豬腸粥) (皮蛋粥) (艇仔粥)
Address: 188, Lebuh Kimberley, George Town, 10100 George Town, Pulau Pinang, Malaysia
Opening hours: 11am – 4.30pm (Weekdays), 8.30am – 2.30pm (Weekends)
Phone: +60 16-480 0659
槟城美食中心Nasi Lemak @ Sri Weld Food Court
Address: Lebuh Pantai, George Town, 10300 George Town, Pulau Pinang, Malaysia
Opening hours: 9am – 5pm
Phone: +60 16-769 9585
Hard Rock Café Penang
Address : Jalan Batu Feringghi, c/o Hard Rock Hotel Penang, 11100 Penang, Malaysia
Phone: +560 4881 1711