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Wooden Box: Secret Hideout In A Vintage Shophouse With A Japanese Cafe & Cosy Reading Space

Wooden Box in Batu Pahat, Johor

New cafes seem to be popping up one after another around Malaysia these days. Over in Johor, the city of Batu Pahat has its own share of welcoming cafes boasting the winning combination of good food and a great ambience.

A spot you can spend hours chilling in is Wooden Box, a four-storey hideout in a vintage Johor shophouse. The building has a charming all-wood interior, and is home to a cafe that serves coffee and cakes, and a reading space to lounge in.

A four-storey hideout with quaint wooden interior

Wooden Box in Batu Pahat - shophouse
Image credit: @airdinn

It’s hard to tell what Wooden Box is from the outside due to its modest shopfront. 

But step inside the shophouse, and you’ll discover a quaint four-storey space outfitted with sleek wood elements. This includes hardwood floors, coffee-coloured window sills, dark wood furniture and charming stairways with gorgeous hand-crafted railings that exude a natural warmth and cosiness.

Wooden Box in Batu Pahat - stairs
Image credit: @chobitschyi

Dine on cakes and hearty Japanese dishes, or simply spend a lazy afternoon discovering various photogenic corners in the building.

Wooden Box - interior
Image credit: @liz.huan

Bookstore located on the top floor of the shophouse

Wooden Box - book
 Dada Reading Space is a perfect literary escape, with its snug area filled with books and the scent of coffee wafting from the cafe below.
Image credit: @chaijingming

Bookworms will be thrilled to know that there’s even a bookstore located on the fourth floor of Wooden Box.

With rustic bookshelves brimming with soulful reads on art, society, and philosophy, the reading space – called 亣亣書冊 Dada Reading Space – is where patrons can unwind with a good book in hand. Or, simply take home a loot of reasonably priced books and borrow books like we used to from bookstores.

Japanese meals, pretty cakes & quality coffee

Wooden Box - food
Image credit: @azuanaashqn

Tucked within the building is a cafe that serves a variety of of food, beverages, and desserts. Occupying a floor in the building, Kokoro Noodle has a Japanese-inspired menu consisting of savoury mains such as Japanese Soy Sauce Noodles with sides of crispy fish (RM18) or crispy chicken (RM15).

Wooden Box - cakes
Their cakes are so gorgeous, they practically beckon you to taste them.
Image adapted from:
Wooden box & Wooden box

Apart from the cafe’s delicious mains, other highlights include their sweet treats and coffee. Their cakes and pies tantalise and tease with their dainty floral decorations and pastel tones. The flavours don’t disappoint either.

There’s the Mango Pandan Chiffon (RM15/slice), which alternates layers of cottony pandan chiffon cake and mango slices sandwiched in aloe vera-infused buttercream. 

For something more fragrant and floral, try the Rose Lychee Chiffon (RM15/slice) – a dreamy structure of three-layered soft chiffon cake, perfumed by natural French Rose pollen and lychee.

Wooden Box - pies
Image credit: @woodenboxmy

Their pies are not to be missed out on if you can’t resist crumbly pastry and sweet fillings. At RM13 a slice, you’ll have a bevy of unique pie flavours to choose from – Salted Caramel Nut Pie, Taro Butter Puff Pie, Avocado Cream Cheese Pie, Strawberry/Mango Almond Cream Pie, and Chocolate Caramel Banana Pie.

Their Classic Apple Pie (RM14) is worth getting as well, and is as laudable as the rest of their bakes.

There’s no better pairing than a horde of sweets with top-notch coffee drinks – here, beverages are brewed by a team of passionate baristas. On their menu, they have Hazelnut Caffe Latte (RM13) and Gula Melaka Macchiato (RM13), as well as non-caffeinated ones such as Houjicha Latte (RM12) and Earl Grey Latte (RM12).

Wooden Box in Batu Pahat, Johor

We’ve seen local cafes mushrooming across the country with minimalist decor and drool-worthy dishes as their stand-out elements. Wooden Box in Batu Pahat, Johor, has an in-house cafe that ticks all the boxes of a trendy space for food and photo ops.

So whether you’re looking to spice up your Instagram feed or searching for a quiet refuge with good books and amazing food, this cosy cafe is definitely worth the visit.

Address: 20, Jalan Pasar, Pegawai Village, 83000 Batu Pahat, Johor
Opening hours: Fri – Wed 12PM-7PM (Closed on Thursdays)
Telephone: 019-388 1017
Wooden Box’s Facebook | Instagram

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Cover image adapted from: @elis_0117, @azuanaashqn, and @chaijingming