Best restaurants in Southeast Asia

  • Top ChoiceRestaurants in Siem Reap

    Cuisine Wat Damnak

    Set in a traditional wooden house is this highly regarded restaurant from Siem Reap celeb chef Joannès Rivière. The menu delivers the ultimate contemporary Khmer dining experience. Seasonal set menus focus on market-fresh ingredients and change weekly; vegetarian options are available with advance notice.

  • Top ChoiceRestaurants in Manila

    Van Gogh is Bipolar

    Every bit as interesting as it sounds, this chaotic restaurant inhabits a tiny space packed with curios and artworks. It's run by artist Jetro, who cooks entirely original, delicious food in a riotous atmosphere that'll likely see you dine wearing a flamboyant hat (grab one from the hatstand). Dinners are three- to five-course set meals, while lunch is à la carte.

  • Top ChoiceRestaurants in Lake Gardens, Brickfields & Bangsar


    Occupying the top level of a multistorey car park overlooking the Perdana Botanical Garden, flamboyant celebrity chef Ismail's restaurant is one of KL's best. The seemingly endless buffet spread is splendid, with all kinds of dishes that you'd typically only be served in a Malay home. Go hungry and book ahead at weekends, when it's super busy.

  • Top ChoiceRestaurants in Colonial District, the Quays & Marina Bay

    Waku Ghin

    The refinement and exquisiteness of the 10-course degustation menu by acclaimed chef Tetsuya Wakuda is nothing short of breathtaking. Using only the freshest ingredients, the modern Japanese-European repertoire changes daily, though the signature marinated Botan shrimp topped with sea urchin and Oscietra caviar remains a permanent showstopper. The newly awarded two Michelin stars has only added to this elusive restaurant's appeal.

  • Top ChoiceRestaurants in Tagaytay & Lake Taal


    One of the finest restaurants in the country, this upscale French-Euro-Filipino eatery offers the chance to rub elbows with politicians and oligarchs over delightfully presented dishes from foie-gras raclette to roast suckling pig – if you can get a reservation. Seating areas include some lovely tables in elegant dining rooms overlooking lotus ponds and a lush tropical garden. Also has a superb garden cocktail bar, the Lanai Lounge.

  • Top ChoiceRestaurants in Riverside, Silom & Lumphini


    Two exceptionally talented chefs run what can easily be called one of the finest Thai restaurants in the world. Its name meaning 'heaven', this chic address has a seven-course tasting menu themed on cooking methods, featuring dishes that are inherently Thai but are executed with the fanciness, finesse and flair worthy of a Michelin-starred restaurant (which it is).

  • Top ChoiceRestaurants in Colonial District, the Quays & Marina Bay


    Cementing its place in the upper echelons of Singapore's saturated fine-dining scene, this modern French restaurant keeps people talking with its newly minted two Michelin stars. With former Jaan chef Julien Royer at the helm, menus are guided by the seasons and expertly crafted. The space is visually stunning, with a soft colour palette and floating aerial installation by local artist Dawn Ng.

  • Top ChoiceRestaurants in Riverside, Silom & Lumphini

    Le Du

    A play on the Thai word for 'season', Le Du intertwines Thai dishes with Western flavours, and applies 21st-century deconstructionist cooking techniques with an emphasis on fresh, seasonal ingredients (including some rather unusual stuff, such as sea grape algae in spring). For the full dinner experience, featuring inventive desserts, opt for the brilliantly conceptualised and presented tasting menus (four/six course 2990/3590B).

  • Top ChoiceRestaurants in Vientiane

    Doi Ka Noi

    It took one meal for Doi Ka Noi to become one of our favourite restaurants in Laos. With a menu that changes daily (check the restaurant's Facebook page at around 8.30am to see what's available), the dishes here range from Lao standards to regional specialities most of us have never heard of, with something to appeal to both newbies and grizzled foodies.

  • Top ChoiceRestaurants in Siam Square, Pratunam, Phloen Chit & Ratchathewi


    This uber-acclaimed restaurant is run by Michelin-starred chef Garima Arora (a protégé of former Bangkok chef Gaggan Anand) who also honed her craft at Copenhagen’s famed Noma. Classic Indian and Thai dishes are the specialities here, upgraded with modern cooking techniques and presented in artful 10- to 12-course tasting menus. Wine pairing (if opted for) doubles the bill. Reservations absolutely essential.

  • Top ChoiceRestaurants in Manila

    Coffee Empire

    A chic industrial open-plan warehouse setup with hessian sacks of single-origin green beans on display in the glassed-in 'green room', plus drawers of roasted beans for sniffing. Excellent food, including huge breakfasts, gourmet sandwiches and New Orleans–style baby back ribs. You can observe roastings on Wednesdays and Saturdays and they also do cuppings (check the website).

  • Top ChoiceRestaurants in Semarang

    Holliday Restaurant

    It's easy to see why this two-storey restaurant is permanently packed: the food is exceptionally good! Earning the unreserved recommendation of the local Chinese population, the restaurant attracts large parties to its circular tables even on a weekday. Dishes of super-fresh seafood, including jellyfish and lobster, and hot plates of bean curd are among the local favourites.

  • Top ChoiceRestaurants in Bukit Bintang, KLCC & Pudu


    Isabel is pure charm and a great addition to KL's dining scene. Both in terms of its menu and contemporary tropical decor, the restaurant provides a sophisticated twist on local classics, with dishes from across the region including a delicious Laotian chicken larb (salad), a mango kerabu salad and luscious oxtail stew as well as various curries.

  • Top ChoiceRestaurants in Bukit Bintang, KLCC & Pudu


    The recipes and ingredients of Tamil Nadu, Kerala and Sri Lanka are the foundation for the sensational tasting menus served at Nadodi (which means nomad). We highly recommend the vegetarian option – 12 courses may sound like a lot, but the sizes of each beautifully presented plate are just right, allowing the chef's artistry to shine.

  • Top ChoiceRestaurants in Borobudur


    For a magical hilltop setting enhanced by traditional music, this vintage restaurant, 4km west of Borobudur, is hard to match. Eat in the formal dining room or out on the terrace with views of the monument. Local dishes are served with modern international flair and there's an extensive wine list.

  • Top ChoiceRestaurants in Colonial District, the Quays & Marina Bay

    National Kitchen by Violet Oon

    Chef Violet Oon is a national treasure, much loved for her faithful Peranakan dishes – so much so that she was chosen to open a restaurant inside Singapore's showcase National Gallery. Feast on made-from-scratch beauties like sweet, spicy kueh pie ti (pastry cups stuffed with prawns and turnip), dry laksa and beef rendang. Bookings two weeks in advance essential.

  • Top ChoiceRestaurants in Chinatown & the CBD

    Hawker Chan Hong Kong Soya Sauce Chicken Rice & Noodle

    With its shiny Michelin star, this humble hawker stall has been thrust into the culinary spotlight. The line forms hours before Mr Chan Hon Meng opens for business, and waiting times can reach two hours. Standout dishes are the tender soy sauce chicken and the caramelised pork char siew ordered with rice or perfectly cooked noodles. Worth the wait? You bet.

  • Top ChoiceRestaurants in Bukit Bintang, KLCC & Pudu

    Jalan Alor

    KL's biggest collection of roadside restaurants and street food vendors sprawls along Jln Alor, just north of Jln Bukit Bintang. While a few restaurants and stalls are open during the day, most open for business in the evening when the street transforms into a continuous open-air restaurant, with hundreds of plastic tables and chairs and rival caterers shouting out to passers-by to drum up business.

  • Top ChoiceRestaurants in Chinatown & the CBD

    Burnt Ends

    The best seats at this mod-Oz hotspot are at the counter, which offers a prime view of chef Dave Pynt and his 4-tonne, wood-fired ovens and custom grills. The affable Aussie cut his teeth under Spanish charcoal deity Victor Arguinzoniz (Asador Etxebarri), an education echoed in pulled pork shoulder in homemade brioche, and beef marmalade and pickles on chargrilled sourdough.

  • Top ChoiceRestaurants in South Jakarta


    One of Jakarta’s most popular dining spots, this casual 1940s Paris–meets–New York bistro is located right in the middle of the busiest business district. It serves classic French brasserie (French onion soup or steak frites) and Asian fare (Indonesian short ribs and Hainan chicken). However, it’s after dark when Loewy really comes alive – it's staffed by top mixologists.