Behind the stalls of Imbi Market

Hawker stalls @ Imbi

Hawker stalls @ Imbi

Imbi wet market is certainly the most renowned food market of KL – and is also known as Pasar Baru Bukit Bintang, since it was originally located instead of Lot 10, on Bukit Bintang. Run by local traders on a medium sized isolated island nearby a parking lot, Imbi market welcomes buyers from the first rays of light till midday, with its slippy floor, colourful local fruits, intoxicating smells, fresh fishes… and even some locally brewed red dragon fruit wine on Thursday and Saturday.

This haven for anybody who cares for fresh and affordable goods is also a hawker paradise. Behind the stalls of Imbi, away from the dry noodles stalls or the hidden pork corner, people who just happen to love eating will reach their 7th heaven. The hawkers serve traditional Malay dishes with exquisite freshness, amongst the best you can find in street food. Issue: menus are in Chinese and you cannot read Chinese? Not to worry – Just have a look around, point to one of the stall what you saw on a table and let yourself go on this fabulously gustative adventure!

I would especially recommend the men yee min (egg noodles +pork), ginger and wine mee sua, and the world famous Sister poppiah (garnished soft spring rolls). For the drinks, two coffee shops at the back indicate ‘Hainan tea’ and will serve you – tea tarik, iced lemon tea…  The kopitiams also serve the traditional, hearty Malaysian breakfast: hainanese coffee, half boiled eggs that end up cooking in front of you (you actually need to remove them on time, otherwise they are overcooked) and toasted bread with kaya, also known as roti kahwin.

Locals come to Imbi market early morning to enjoy a generous breakfast, but if like me you cannot reach it until later, go for an early lunch – I find it easier to stomach laksa and other men yees at lunchtime! Be an early bird and arrive / order at the latest at 12.15pm if you want to have most of the stalls open, since they tend to have disappeared by 1pm.

Imbi market is really an out of time (food) experience that shouldn’t be missed by any foodie. It’s the place to get delicious fresh food to go or eat in, while reminding us how life without malls in KL was. Enchanting.

NB: no bills here! so here is another picture – of the super creamy yummy egg tarts to finish your meal! Bon appétit!

With whom? Friends  

Bunn Choon's egg tarts

Bunn Choon’s egg tarts

Price range? RM2 – RM10

Favorite place ? a table close to the Hainan coffee shop


Contact: Pasar Baru Bukit Bintang – jalan Melati, nearby jalan Imbi – Kuala Lumpur

Opening hours: everyday, 7am – 12.30pm

Food in KL, Kuala Lumpur, Imbi market