Since Cambodia’s period of economic boom in 2007, a constant stream of investors has been pouring into Phnom Penh. This is evident in the city centre’s plethora of stores, cafes and restaurants that all attest to the diversity of nationalities investing in the city. Here are 10 restaurants that showcase Phnom Penh’s diversity when it comes to dining experiences.
Run by Cambodian celebrity chef, Luu Meng, Malis serves up fine Khmer cuisine that’s given a contemporary twist. With many of Cambodia’s traditional recipes wiped out during the Khmer Rouge regime, Meng has made it his mission to revive the unique flavours his homeland is famous for. The Kampot rock crab red curry comes highly recommended.
This intimate eatery is in a quiet neighbourhood in Toul Tom Poung, close to Russian Market. Serving up a simple menu with dishes such as killer fresh noodles, gyoza, spring rolls and tofu and kimchi, Sesame Noodle Bar is open for lunch and dinner. The Mighty Thor Buns are a must-try.
If you’re craving some food from the West in the form of authentic Italian pizzas, then look no further than Piccolo Italia Da Luigi. Without a doubt Phnom Penh’s best pizza joint, these thin-crust options come with a host of toppings, with many imported from Italy. Be warned, it gets busy so it is worth booking in advance.
For more than two decades, Topaz has been serving the city with fine French cuisine. The menu features set lunch and dinner options, as well as a la carte dining. A Sunday brunch is also available, and the restaurant regularly hosts visiting chefs from France to cook up a treat in the kitchen.
Catering towards the swelling number of globetrotters that like to inject more healthy foods into their diets, Backyard Cafe offers a range of vegan, vegetarian and raw food options. Think king quinoa, pumpkin and hummus salad, and a hearty earth bowl of lentil, roasted cauliflower, brown rice, roasted red peppers, pickled beetroot, guacamole, spinach and activated almonds.
Nestled in a tropical garden, this restaurant serves up authentic and delicious casual Khmer cuisine. Boasting a cosy and comfortable atmosphere, Eleven One Kitchen cooks up a range of local treats – from chicken and cashew rice and shrimp wontons, to traditional Khmer curries and noodle dishes.
Cambodia’s swelling number of Japanese expats has led to a number of top restaurants serving up delicacies from the country opening in the capital. The Sushi Bar is one of them, with a lengthy list of rolls, bento sets, sashimi and rice dishes. Private rooms are also available for group bookings.
Since 2000, Irina has been providing Phnom Penh with an authentic taste of Russia. The hearty dishes take in classics, such as blini with mushrooms, sryniki, chicken kiev and feta meatballs. Of course, no Russian restaurant is complete without an extensive vodka menu, which Irina certainly has.
If it’s a good curry that you’re craving, then head to Angkor India Restaurant on the backpacker stretch of Street 278. Generous portions mean you definitely won’t leave unsatisfied, with the extensive menu taking in a range of classic Indian and Nepalese dishes.
If Mexican food gets your mouth watering, then there are plenty of options in Phnom Penh, with Mexicano being a stand-out among the pickings. The concise menu has a range of authentic Mexican offerings, including tacos and burritos. The margarita is a great way to wash down dinner.