The Cool Cat
The Cool Cat is located in the middle of nowhere (trust me, even Grab drivers have a hard time finding this place). Once you have found your way into the Tunku Mahkota Ismail Youth Centre, you will be greeted by a restaurant that looks like a container park and a mini skate park.
If you’re looking for something to cool yourself off, The Cool Cat sells homemade ice cream in a variety of flavors. It made the ice cream less sweet to suit everyone’s taste buds.
For only RM11.9, an ice cream cup comes with homemade mini syringes of chocolate syrup, a mini pretzel, a mini ice cream cone, and a frozen strawberry, all served on tortilla chips.
Location: Jalan Yahya Awal, Bandar Johor Bahru, 80200 Johor Bahru, Johor, Malaysia
Contact: +60 13-812 3452
Mon & Tue: 1pm – 8.30pm
Wed: 12pm – 8.30pm
Thu: 1pm – 8pm
Fri to Sun: 1pm – 10pm
Caribbean Juice Bar
Next up is the Caribbean Juice Bar. Think Bali or the Caribbean, this is a great place for your inner island girl (or boy). Perfectly situated in Puteri Harbour, the juice bar is conveniently located by the water, adding to the island ambience.
This old shipping container is decorated with wooden furniture and floors, and has a second level with a straw roof above it – the perfect place to play your Instagram game. Also, they have a really cool playlist that can set the mood.
Location: Sandy Beach, Marina Walk, Puteri Harbour, 79100 Nusajaya, Johor, Malaysia
Tue to Thu: 3pm – 10pm
Fri & Sat: 4pm – 12am
Sun: 4pm – 10pm
George and Dragon Cafe
This quaint English cafe is filled with the owner’s heirlooms, complete with knights, antiques and memorabilia, among other things.
Personally, if you’re craving a nice, juicy steak, this is a good place to go. Don’t forget their delicious homemade sauce (RM4.80), which will automatically make you forget to pair your steak with a boring black pepper or mushroom sauce.
The main course is fish and chips (RM38.80) and Bangers & Mash (RM24). Like their steaks, all of their dishes are absolute sausages. Also, if you’re a huge dessert lover, be sure to try their homemade desserts – I hear they’re not to be missed!
Location: No. 1 & 3, Jalan Glasiar, Taman Tasek, 80200 Johor Bahru, Johor, Malaysia
Contact: +60 7-232 3761
Daily: 12pm – 10pm
The Lightwood by Mues
Another hidden gem that’s been all the rage lately is the Lightwood by Mues. The one-month-old, pastel-coloured bakery cafe has been the talk of Johoreans for some time.
They are known for homemade Sourdough Bread, Focaccia, and Bagels, along with mains like their Wild Rice Pilaf, Duck Confit, and more. With your favorite drink, you’ll have a great time!
Location: 18k Basement, Jalan Abdul Samad, Kampung Bahru, 80100 Johor Bahru, Johor
Mon, Wed to Sun: 8.30am – 6pm
Closed on Tue
Off Day Cafe
Ever heard of a place that contains three countries in one place? That’s what Off Day Cafe is all about. At this minimalist cafe, you’ll find Australian-style brunches, Korean-style desserts, and Malaysian roast coffee. If that’s not enough, their all-white interior plus cute terrazzo tabletop gives this place extra pop!
Come and try their Freshly Baked Strawberry Shortcake (RM13) or incredibly indulgent Tiramisu Cake (RM16), served with a refreshing glass of milk to end the day.
Location: 57, Jalan Eko Botani 3/7, 79100 Gelang Patah, Johor, Malaysia
Mon, Wed & Thu: 9am – 6pm
Fri, Sat & Sun: 9am – 10pm
Closed on Tue
A Bread & Coffee Place
With a name as self-explanatory as A Bread & Coffee Place, you wouldn’t expect anything else, would you? Wrong. Besides bread and coffee, this old-school cafe also specializes in Western food and cakes.
If you like the simple life, this is the cafe for you. Coupled with a nostalgic atmosphere, the bread and coffee place offers the simple things life has to offer. Breakfast lovers, you’ll be pleased to know that RM28 gets you a super breakfast set – it comes with two slices of crispy bacon, two sausages, scrambled eggs, sauteed mushrooms, two slices of toast, lettuce, cherry tomatoes, and your choice of potatoes or squash.
Location: 208, Jalan Sri Pelangi, Taman Pelangi, 80400 Johor Bahru, Johor, Malaysia
Contact: +60 11-5209 6888
Mon, Tue, Thu to Sun: 8am – 5pm
Closed on Wed
Enter KAKIYUKI, a Japanese-style artisanal shaved ice dessert bar that uses fresh fruit and premium ingredients.
This cafe is worth a visit, especially if, like me, you’re a shave ice lover. Cold desserts are what we need when we spend too much time in the sun. With Matcha Brulee, Hōji Mountain, Watermelon Kiss, Black Forest S’mores, and more, you’d definitely be spoiled for choice!
They also have Anmitsu Ice, an ice-based Japanese Anmitsu dessert bowl, and classic Japanese confectionery!
Location: 11, Jalan Austin Heights 8/5, Taman Mount Austin, 81100, Johor Bahru, Malaysia
Contact: +60 7-351 9907
Mon, Wed to Sun: 1pm – 11pm
Closed on Tue
This industrial-themed cafe specializes in Japanese cuisine and matcha drinks, and you’ll instantly enter a dystopian society. Or on the set of The Hunger Games. However, the interior design is reminiscent of a modern art gallery. Be warned to arrive early to avoid long waits.
Recommended are Matcha Strawberry Sando (RM14), Truffle Carbonara Udon (RM26), and you can never go wrong with some crispy Karaage (RM16). Afterwards, wash it all down with a tall glass of refreshing Watermelon Matcha Iced Latte (RM15).