Dinner at IKEA Restaurant & Cafe

I have enjoyed countless meals at IKEA Restaurant & Cafe, but it has always been for lunch. Or even breakfast.

Have you ever had your dinner at IKEA? I have not, and for whatever reason, IKEA was never top-of-mind for dinner.

Cupcake needed to buy something from Art Friend in The Curve, so we drove there on a Friday evening. We couldn’t decide where and what to eat for dinner. As usual, she asked me to pick the restaurant.

Go up on the IKEA escalator

 Out of the blue, I thought of IKEA. Cupcake thought I was suggesting restaurants near to IKEA, at IPC. So, she was surprised when I lead her to go up on the IKEA escalator.

Super crowded around 8pm

 The place was super crowded. Cupcake and I were surprised seeing the massive crowd. Is it a popular dinner joint? We obediently joined in the queue. 

I saw people pushing food trolleys when they were early on in the queue. My brain just failed to connect the dots. Why so kiasu? (Kiasu is a Singlish word that means afraid to lose). I thought trolleys are available near the food counters, where we collect trays.

Upon reaching the food counters, I finally saw the light. Perhaps these people are regulars, so they are already aware of trolley shortage situation during dinner rush hour. 

Abandoned trolley turn into ours yipee!

 So, Cupcake and I took a tray each, which is sufficient for our order. But I found an abandoned trolley along the way, and quickly took it for us.

Gravad Lax, my all-time fav!


5-piece Swedish Meatballs from Kids’ menu

 If I am not wrong, dinner menu is slightly different. But I ordered my usual favorites: Gravad Lax with mustard and dill, a cold cured raw salmon dishes (RM 11.50) and 5-piece Swedish Meatballs (RM 5.00) from Kids’ menu, whilst Cupcake opted for Baked Chicken Leg with Lemon Sauce (RM 13.90). We shared a slice of Almond Cake (RM 6.30), a bowl of mushroom soup (RM 4.20) and a bottle of water. Total damage: RM 44+, thanks Cupcake for dinner treat.

I’ll now write a bit about Cupcake’s observation when we were in the queue, and it’s about BALL. Since I wrote about this topic previously, do read it here before you read on, to ensure that we are on the same page, okay?

My beloved friend saw that most customers have BALL in their food trolley. So, I said “yeah, it’s IKEA’s signature Swedish Meatball. But it’s beef, so you can’t eat it.” 

Then she commented on two things: SIZE and COLOR. Now you see why I asked you to read my earlier post first?

So Cupcake said: And it comes in different sizes, I mean .. quantity. Some a lot, some really a LOT. And some are in different color.

Mind you, the queue was really long, and our eyes did wander a bit … wandered to other food trolleys, to be more specific.

See what makes us great advertising professionals? Powers of Observation!

Different colors, because IKEA now has chicken balls and vegetable balls in their menu. Good news for non-beef eaters! 

Different sizes (quantity), because of different serving sizes lah.

As for me, I was complaining about diners walking away after they are done. What is this thing about table not cleared by diners during dinner time? IKEA staff were busy clearing plates and eating utensils, and used serviettes (yukes!) left by diners. Tsk. Is there unwritten rule somewhere that ‘clearing your own table‘ rule only applies during daytime? We cleared our own table, of course.

Overall, it was a pretty good dinner (with a fantastic companion). I’ll be back!


Travel opens up a whole new world, which is cliche but true. I am a strong advocate for independent and solo travel. I was born and raised in Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia but now live in Bangkok, Thailand, resulted from a chance encounter in 2009 with my why-are-you-Thai bf. I am now split between two countries. One country for my bf, another for the family, for the occasional weekend together.