We’re sure that you have been to enough cafes to discern that a major criterion for most cafes these days is to have a decor that evokes an untouched facade that’s laced with industrial (and Ikea) furnishing. The key phrase here is ‘to evoke’. The Front Door is lucky enough to have an in-built old world charm that comes from the colonial architecture that holds both the cafe and the Grocer’s Inn, a backpackers’ place. Curiously, the front door of the backpacker’s place is situated at the right side of the yellow slicked establishment whereas for the cafe, well, you can imagine where it is.
The Front Door joins the few cafes that inhabit this street in Chinatown, such as Cafe Amo and Einstein Cafe. Comparatively, The Front Door is straightforward, devoid of froufrou; it appeals to those of us who would just like to pop into a place to have a cup of joe and go on our merry way. But with this place, it’s hard to simply leave without admiring the tall ceiling, the aesthetically dirted, ruined tiled floor, and the incredible stretch of a walkway that leads you to firstly the kitchen and then the washroom. The walk to the end of the building will have your eyes darting in a myriad of directions – to the left, there’s the eclectic mural of a smattering of doodled oddities that appear harmoniously in vivid white paint; to the right, you can either peer into the glass door of Grocer’s Inn or the hustling of the kitchen staff.
On weekends, it’s a swivelling door of customers pouring into the cafe. It attracts kids who probably subscribed to CafeHop KL, rowdy Brady Bunch-esque families, tourists, and people neck deep in stern business discussions – the whole of the capital’s visiting societal crop really. The Front Door’s menu offers the standard variety of pastas, breakfasts, desserts, and coffee, but what they are known for are smorgasbords or open-faced sandwiches, of which they are as gourmet as cafe grub can get. For instance take a look at these gastronomic pairings; grilled chicken and caramelised orange? Cheddar and strawberries? The flavours sit on your tongue and you could literally feel your pupils dilate. We don’t have well-trained palates per se, but could we also humbly suggest that they make really great egg dishes as well?
No matter what you choose to eat or drink during your visit to The Front Door, it’s definitely worth braving the KL traffic to get there.
78, JALAN SULTAN
T: 016 638 6213
OPEN: 10AM – 6PM (MON – THU) / 10AM – 9.30PM (FRI – SUN)