Thanis Lim

All Rounder Chef and Food Journalist

The Brunei Food Guide

My friend from Australia is visiting for 3 days in Brunei and I was wondering – where would be the places I would be proud to take him to eat? We Bruneians are a very hospitable bunch and we love visitors! I sat down and thought of the places I could take him and narrowed it down to these restaurants. This post is meant as a guideline for visitors who want to explore the dining scene in Brunei and also for locals who want ideas on where to eat. Note: Not being included in this list does not mean the restaurants are not worthy. There are still plenty of good restaurants that won’t be listed in this list – in such a short time – and limited stomach space – I would narrow it down to a few of my favourites! So here goes ~~~ The best restaurants to eat the best food in Brunei!

 

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Mmmm so much choices ~~ but where to eat?

Edit: Recently readers have requested for me to label whether restaurants are halal or not. For this guide – I will highlight if the restaurant serves pork (non halal). The other restaurants which do not have the label would be pork free. I’ve also added address and telephone numbers for some of the restaurants.

Chop Jing Chew


Located in Central Gadong. This restaurant has a very long history and is our nations pride. Delicious bread and buns made fresh daily and lot’s of variety of dishes to savour. Their Roti Kuning and Roti Cucur are must tries but my personal favourite is still their Roti Kacang Kahwin! A must try food in Brunei! Recently, they introduced the Roti Cheese, which is a new item you must try. Savoury favourites include their Roti Cucur (French Toast using their yellow bread) as well as their signature Zhi Ma Kway Teow ( Rice Noodles tossed in dark sweet sauce and topped with fried fish fillets)

 

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Address:

Simpang 5, No. 10, Jalan Gadong, BSB, BS 8670, Brunei Darussalam.

2424132 / 2448660
 
http://cookiemonzters.blogspot.com/2008/03/restaurant-review-jinchiew-kopitiam.html

 

Pasar malam Gadong


No trip to Brunei is complete without a tour around the night markets in Gadong. One can bring $5 and have a very very filling meal in these night markets. Grilled chicken, fish and satays are widely available here. Don’t miss Hati Buyah, a marinated and stir fried sliced beef lungs, Ayam Tongkeng (chicken butts!!), pulut panggang (glutious rice stuffed with beef or prawns, wrapped with banana leaves and grilled), Kuih Melaya (Malay style pancake with peanuts, condensed milk and raisins) and lots of good thirst quenching drinks like Samboi (sour plum) and coconut juice. Your trip in Brunei is not complete without a visit to our popular night markets! Oh My Food!

 

Address: Behind Rizqun Hotel at the Mall Gadong – ask the locals for walking directions. They are very friendly!

 

Tarindak di Seni


Situated in Kota Batu, Tarindak has great view of the Water Village as well as a showcase for Handicrafts for tourists to have a look. They also boast a great selection of local food and desserts in their affordable buffet, including the iconic Ambuyat, which is a must try for tourists. I personally like their spacious comfortable setting and good service.

Address:
1st Floor Brunei Arts and Handicarft Training Centre, Jalan Kota Batu,Bandar Seri Begawan
673-224-0422
http://cookiemonzters.blogspot.com/2009/07/tarindak-restaurant-kota-batu.html

 

Aminah Arif Restaurant

A great place to showcase traditional Bruneian cuisine such as Ambuyat, Belutak, Pais, Daging Lalap and much much more~~ give them the traditional Bruneian cuisine experience! Just order the Ambuyat normal or special sets.

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Address: Unit 2 & 3 Blk B Ground Floor, Bangunan Hj Abd Rahman, Simpang 88, Kg Kiulap Bandar Seri Begawan.  Phone: 2653036

http://www.thanislim.com/2013/12/brunei-restaurant-review-aminah-arif.html

 

Pondok Sari Wangi (Gadong and Sengkurong Branch – *Updated Citi Square new branch!)


Indonesian cuisine at its best! The restaurant that sparked the Ayam Penyet craze in Brunei, copied by many but none managed to wrestle the title of best Ayam Penyet from this restaurant. The restaurant has managed to modernize some Indonesian classics while adding some Chinese influence to their menu.  Good dishes one mustn’t miss are their Ayam Penyet, Ayam Rendang, Iga Penyet (beef ribs), Tauhu Telur, Gado Gado,

Simply delicious Beef Satay (using Wagyu beef), Gulai Lamb Shank and many many more! I am especially a big fan of their Sambel Hijau (only available at Sengkurong branch). The restaurant you must visit in Brunei! **Update: Recently they opened a branch in Citi Square which serves bebek penyet (DUCK PENYET) and Gulai Iga (angus beef ribs in rich spicy gravy) - oh my Indonesian food!



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Address:

Pondok Sari Wangi Restaurant Gadong
Unit 12 & 13 1st Fl Blk A Abd Razak Complex Jln Gadong
673-244-5043

Pondok Sari Wangi Restaurant Sengkurong
Unit 12 & 13 Bgn HYA Jln Tutong Kpg Sengkurong A
673-266-1893

Pondok Sari Wangi Restaurant Serusop
17 Gr Fl Spg 72 Delima Kpg Delima Satu Jln Muara
673-233-1151
http://cookiemonzters.blogspot.com/2011/11/pondok-sari-wangi-has-been-serving.html

 

Excapade Sushi


One of Brunei’s main attraction is Excapade Sushi. People from Miri and KK actually put Excapade as their must go place for Japanese food when they visit Brunei. It’s very affordable yet good quality sushi. If you had tried budget sushi places in Malaysia, Singapore and Australia – you will be surprised that Excapade is pretty good value for money. They have many branches throughout Brunei but I always prefer the Gadong branch.

Excapade Sushi Belait

2 Gr Fl Blk B Bgn Pg Hj Hashim Pg Mohd Jadid Jln Jaya Negara Kuala Belait

673-333-3993

Excapade Sushi Bunut

A2 Spg 638 Gr Fl Bgn Lim Seng Kok

673-265-4312

Excapade Sushi Gadong

Unit 4 & 5 1st Fl Abd Razak Complex Blk E Gadong

673-244-3012

Excaped Sushi Kiulap

Unit 5 Gr Fl Blk A Q=lap Complex Kpg Kiulap

673-223-4012

Excapade Sushi Regent Square

Unit 1 & 2 Gr Fl Regent Square Kpg Kiulap

673-223-4011

Excapade Sushi Seria

No 80 Jln Bunga Melor

673-322-1155

Excapade Sushi Serusop

5 Gr Fl Blk A Bgn Desa Delima Jln Muara Kpg Pancha Delima

673-233-5512

Excapade Sushi Times Square

G1 Gr Fl Times Square Shopping Centre Berakas

673-234-2912

 

Kimchi Korean Restaurant


Located at Regent Square in Kiulap and it’s right next to a the most popular boutique Deseo, Kimchi has great range of Korean cuisine, BBQ and desserts. This is my go to place for my Korean Food cravings.

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Address:

19 Gr Fl Blk B Regent Square Kpg Kiulap
673-222-2233
http://cookiemonzters.blogspot.com/2012/11/kimchi-restaurant-annyeong-haseyo.html

 

Sapphira Cake House


This cake house specializing in traditional Malay cakes is one of the best places for tea. There are  a wide variety of really good traditional cakes to choose from and I must mention I am a fan of their Nasi Lemak Ayam (Braised chicken with coconut rice served with a spicy chili jam). Sapphira has a branch in Kiulap but recently opened up a new branch in Bandar so be sure to check them out!

 


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Address:

Sapphira Kiulap, Spg 88 3 Gr Floor Seri Anigma, Kiulap (next to Yappy Kopitiam)
673-223-2021

Sapphira Bandar, Same row as Coffee Bean (Opposite HSBC Bandar)

 

Noralizah & Iskandar's House of Curry (same row as KFC)


This place simply has the best murtabak. Good crispy fragrant texture, served with delicious condiments like sardines and corn beef, this place is my favourite place for Murtabak. It’s so good, friends from Singapore actually felt this is better than their native Roti Canai! Their Roti Kosong is simply good enough to eat on it’s own but even better with the condiments and curry! My personal favourite condiment is the sardine! A special mention goes to their Roti Pisang (Banana Murtabak) and be wowed!



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Address:

No. 15, Ground Floor, Kompleks Awang Hj Ibrahim, Kg. Lambak B, Jalan Berakas (same row as KFC and WYWY Lambak)

Contact Number: +6738675781
http://www.thanislim.com/2013/11/brunei-restaurant-review-noralizah.html

 

Lao Di Fang – Nostalgic Restaurant


Situated at Central Gadong, Lao Di Fang recently opened a nostalgic themed style restaurant. Tourists would enjoy the old school Chinese style décor while enjoying the good grilled satays(only available at night). A good place for photography while enjoying a good snack.



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Address:

Simpang 21, Block A, Unit 7, Gadong Central, Kampong Menglait

242 7217
http://cookiemonzters.blogspot.com/2011/11/lao-di-fangnostalgia-restaurant.html


Glamourous Seafood Buffet at Pantai Restaurant at The Empire Hotel

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Pantai seafood restaurant has recently went through a restaurant makeover and I must say I am very impressed with their new look! They also feature fresh seafood including Crabs and fresh oysters, Japanese style grilled satay, sliced ribs from the carvery, fried rice or udon noodles stations, great appetizers and their signature desserts like kueh batik!

NOTE: It has come to my attention that recently oysters are not in the buffet spread anymore but do call to double confirm with the restaurant. The ambience is still a good reason to bring important guests and your loved ones for special occasions.

 

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Address:

The Empire Hotel and Country Club

Jerudong BG3122,

673 241 8888

For review of their buffet spread: click the link below. (note: buffet spreads change over time)

http://cookiemonzters.blogspot.com/2013/05/brunei-restaurant-review-empire-hotels.html

 

The Energy Kitchen

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They say travelling around doesn’t mean you can’t go for healthy options. If you’re a truly healthy fitness guru type –look no further than The Energy Kitchen, the first truly healthy eating restaurant co founded by International celebrity Wu Chun 吴尊! Think gluten free pancakes, fresh healthy super foods salad, cold pressed juices and flourless chocolate cakes ~ the best part is – it’s just right below the biggest gym in Brunei – Fitness Zone.

Address: Ground Floor, Fitness Zone, Kiulap

Phone 223 3323

http://www.thanislim.com/2014/06/brunei-restaurant-review-energy-kitchen.html

 

MrBaker’s Bakeshop

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MrBaker’s Bakeshop is my go to place for premium healthy breads. They have one of the best croissants in Brunei and their bagel sandwiches are pretty good! They recently opened a branch in Jerudong International School.

Address:

Main branch: Unit 106, Ground Floor, Bangunan Bersurat, Jalan Batu Bersurat, Gadong (7:30 am till 9:30pm) Tel: 2426020

Mr Baker’s Cafeteria: Unit 47, Ground Floor, Block C, Gadong Central (7:00 am till 9:00 pm) Tel: 2427554

JPMC bakery: Main lobby area, next to the gym (7:00 am till 9:30pm)

All outlets are closed on Fridays from 12:00 pm – 2:00 pm.

http://www.thanislim.com/2014/02/brunei-restaurant-review-mr-bakers.html

 

Deals Restaurant (Radisson Hotel)

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Deals Restaurant has recently won me over for their good quality fine dining. The setting is romantic and the service very good. It is my go to place for a romantic dinner!

 

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Be sure to check out their New Zealand Oysters whenever they’re on promotion and I’m a big fan of their Blue Cheese Ice Cream! Unique and delicious!

Address:

Radisson Hotel, Jalan Tasek 2203, Bandar Seri Begawan BS8211, Brunei
+673 224 4272

 

Sorisso Restaurant

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Sorisso in my opinion is the best Italian restaurant in Brunei – hands down. My favourite is their Sorisso pizza, which consists of thinly sliced raw beef carpaccio, with shaved parmesan slices and truffle oil. Authentic pizzas and pastas, as well as a good selection of Anti-pastos prepared by an Italian Chef Salvo is extremely friendly and fun to have around! Look out for their specials from time to time such as lobsters, truffle burgers and foie gras!

Address: Regent Square, #14/15 Block B Grd Floor, Kiulap
BE 1518 Bandar Seri Begawan

Tel: 223 3030

 

Ximply Chriz Café

This café recently opened and is raved for their exquisite desserts that are attracting quite a crowd! A family run business where both mother and daughter are passionate about great desserts and good coffee. They’re located at Regent Square Kiulap opposite Kimchi restaurant’s block!

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There’s a good reason they named this dessert Heavenly Chocolate!

Address:

Gr Fl Blk A Regent Square Kpg Kiulap (opposite Kimchi Kiulap and same row as Excapade Regent Square)

Paddington House of Pancakes

Paddington House of Pancakes is highly recommended for their beautiful yet cosy ambience – suitable for a simple date for two, a group of friends or even families. Their savoury and sweet choices make it a must try place to visit! Did I mention they have great coffees as well!?

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To get to Paddington House of Pancakes – turn in from the Airport roundabout into Jalan Berakas – take the First U-Turn and you will see the Happy Star Building~~

If you’re coming from Berakas – The Happy Star Building should be on your left – just before Sekolah Menengah Berakas.

Call them to make pre-orders and reservations at 2331668

http://www.thanislim.com/2013/07/brunei-restaurant-review-paddington.html 

High Frequency Lifestyle Cafe

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High Frequency Café not only offers a cosy hipster ambience for you to enjoy your coffee – but they actually make really good coffee! One of my favourite places to enjoy a cuppa while serving a good range of delicious brunch and dinner items.

 

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Feel like taking someone special out for brunch or dinner? Or just want to pop by for a chat with friends over a cup of coffee? High Frequency is always a good choice!

Address:

1st Floor, Unit 5, Blk B Sempurna Complex, Baru Bersurat, Brunei

(Opposite Fun Bee Park – up the hill of Batu Bersurat – in the newer blocks)

http://www.thanislim.com/2014/02/brunei-restaurant-review-high-frequency.html 

Charcoal BBQ and Grill Restaurant

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Charcoal restaurant is one of the iconic grill and bbq restaurant in Brunei – famous for their delicious range of beef ribs, steaks and comfort food – with a good mix of sauces to suit both local and Western taste buds. Besides that, they are famous especially for their superb Skewers all you can eat buffet that happens during the fasting month every year!

Address: Kilometers 2.5, Jalan Tutong, The Crowne Princess Complex, Bandar Seri Begawan BA1779
+673 222 1171

http://www.thanislim.com/2014/07/brunei-sungkai-2014-charcoal-bbq-n-grill.html 

MyTown Eating House

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Mytown Eating house is a locally created heritage style restaurant that features great food created specially for the Bruneian taste but with affordable local prices! One of my favourite dishes is their chicken skin fried kway teow ~~ *swoons* They also offer freshly baked buns and tarts daily so be sure to pop over for a quick snack or meal!

 

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They really know how to win you over with nostalgic biscuits such as these on your drink ~~ mmmm

Address:

Ground Floor, The Crown Princess Complex, KM2.5, Jalan Tutong, BA1779, Brunei

+6732241880

http://www.thanislim.com/2014/06/brunei-restaurant-review-mytown-eating.html

 

Bahn Nucha at the Mall Gadong


There are many good Thai restaurants in Brunei and I personally like Bahn Nucha at the mall. One simply must try their Claypot Tanghoon Salad, which fully utilizes the coriander root to give a strong flavour.

Address: 2nd Floor, Mall Gadong
https://www.facebook.com/media/set/?set=a.459711661416.238393.581271416&type=3

 

Nur Wanita Thai Restaurant


Located in Kiarung. Nur Wanita feels like a classy Thai restaurant (Northern Thai and Chiang Mai style) and serves both traditional and modern creative Thai style cuisine. I personally loved their Crispy Deep Fried Kang Kong and their Spicy Green Curry Spaghetti. Good service and ambience – a must try if you love Thai Food!

 

Address:

Unit 10 Block B, Kiarong Complex, Brunei Darussalam, BE1318

6732426789
http://cookiemonzters.blogspot.com/2013/04/brunei-restaurant-review-nur-wanita.html

 

Thiam Hock (non-halal)


Famous for their Curry Fish Head, they are also the go to place for good Chinese cuisine. Be sure to check out their signature tofu, German Pork Trotter and Thai style soft shell crabs (my favourite soft shell crab dish in Brunei!) Delicious! Located in Gadong just behind the Mall.

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Address:

No.5, Yong Siong Bldg,

Lot 9452, Gadong

244-1679

http://cookiemonzters.blogspot.com/2013/04/brunei-restaurant-review-thiam-hock.html

 

Ocean Quarry Kolomee (now at Sukanya Restaurant) (non-halal)


I had been eating this delicious kolomee since I was a young boy and this kolomee has become increasingly mobile lately, always moving and changing places. At the moment, Uncle Lai, the creator sells his kolomee at Sukanya Restaurant along Jalan Madewa

The famous Ah Lai Ocean Quarry Kolomee that I grew up eating.

 

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I must say they have quite a selection of good quality Kuching style dishes such as this gorgeous Tomato Kway Teow!

Address:

Restaurant Sukanya

Spg 618, Madewa Bunut Area

http://www.thanislim.com/2014/04/brunei-restaurant-review-sukanya.html

Hing Nam Fong restaurant (non-halal)


Located near the workshop areas of Menglait. Hing Nam Fong has good kueh chap (pork spare parts soup), kolomee and one must try their Fried Indomie with Lap Cheong (Chinese Dried Sausage) and sunny side up egg

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Delicious Indomie Goreng with Ba Teng (Spiced Pork Cubes) and eggs. Must try! 

Address:

Menglait Area at the stretch of workshops.
http://cookiemonzters.blogspot.com/2008/04/brunei-restaurant-review-hing-nam-hong.html

Lim Ah Siaw Restaurant (non-halal)


Regarded as the most HARAM restaurant in Brunei – this restaurant is located within the Pork Market behind terrace hotel. It has popular pork dishes such as Kueh Chap Soup (pork spare parts), pork leg Kolomee and I’m a big fan of their Nai Su Chicken (crispy milk powder chicken)

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Address: The pork market – turn in on the road between Terrace Hotel and Radisson Hotel In Bandar. 

http://cookiemonzters.blogspot.com/2011/11/lim-ah-siaw-restaurant.html

 

Renyi Filipino Restaurant (non-halal)

Filipino food has been hailed for it’s richness and comfort food. A visit to Renyi restaurant to sample their Filipino cuisine is a must! You won’t be disappointed! Just make sure you go during lunch time!

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Address is in Menglait Gadong – read the post for driving directions.

http://cookiemonzters.blogspot.com/2013/03/brunei-restaurant-review-renyi-filipino.html 

Dane’s Café (Non Halal Café)

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Dane’s Café is one of it’s kind in Brunei for being the first Non-Halal café and also serving arguably the best kolomee in Brunei. The café serves authentic Kuching kolomee but I am very fond of their Kolomee Special, which adds bacon and a sunny side up egg! Simply heavenly! I loved the superhero themed tables and the cosy dim settings! They also serve good coffee and other bacon goodness sandwiches and all day brunches ~ #neverenuffBACON!  I also highly recommend their Coconut Cheesecake which is simply divine! #favcheesecakeEVA!

Address: Unit 102, Bangunan Batu Bersurat

(basically the buildings next to the Batu Bersurat Basketball Court, used to be TAFU restaurant) 

Delicious Laksa from Soon Lai (non halal)

Soon Lai restaurant has a pretty good curry laksa noodles and it’s considered one of the places I am proud to bring my friends for food.

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The address is in Menglait, Gadong – read the post for more detailed explanation

http://www.thanislim.com/2013/06/brunei-restaurant-review-best-laksa.html 

 

Coconut Grove Restaurant - Best fried mee and fried bee hoon in Brunei (non halal)

In my opinion, one of the best place in Brunei to have great fried mee and bee hoon. Check out their signature fried bee hoon with sunny side up egg. You will not be disappointed.

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Address:

Location and driving directions in the blog link below.

http://www.thanislim.com/2013/09/brunei-restaurant-review-coconut-grove.html



Honourable mentions: Gold Leaf also serves quite good roasted and barbecued pork (suckling pig only on Sunday). Ideal Restaurant is another local franchise you should try - for their delicious honey chicken!

Disclaimer: There are probably some gems that I missed which should be in this list – especially restaurants in KB and Seria. It would be great help to suggest restaurants that should be in this list.

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