Eating out in restaurants back in Ireland or any other western county can be pricey and sometimes only happens on special occasions. And when I talk about eating out I don’t mean a take away from Lennox’s or Four Star Pizza. I mean going to a restaurant, sitting down, having food, a few beers and catching up with friends. This is what Phnom Penh does best!
There are hundreds, if not thousands of restaurants in PP to choose from, some better than others and some hidden gems that are rarely talked about by the expat community in order to keep off the backpacker trail.
TripAdvisor is a great way to visit some of the top places to eat in a city, but sometimes it doesn’t have everything, or some of the establishments do not receive the recognition that they deserve. It is good to use TripAdvisor as a guide, but don’t take is as Gospel!
The following are some of my favourite places to eat in PP:
- Chat and Chew – No. 54, St.172, Phnom Penh
Owned by Sony and his wife, it is a nice small friendly place where you are always greeted with a smile, and if you’re luck you will get one of the two tables outside. The walls are decorated with various pictures of the Khmer culture, from Khmer boxing to the rural rice fields.
Chat and Chew is a local spot for most Expats in PP who have tried a lot of different eateries in the city. It’s breakfast options vary from omelettes, to muesli to a full English Breakfast, and my personal favourite, egg and soldiers!
Main courses are the main reason that the expat community keep coming to Chat and Chew. Burgers, pasta, pizza, salads and the Western Specialties such and Chicken Cordon Blue, Beef Wellington and BBQ Ribs are all top quality and ensure that you don’t leave hungry.
Its local Asian and Khmer Menu offer some cheaper alternatives to the Western menu. Nasi Goreng, Fried Rice/Noodles, Khmer curry, Amok, Chicken and cashew are all available. The unique taste from each dish will ensure that the next time you return you will want to taste something new and see it can beat your last order.
- The Irish Place – Street 110, No. 119, Phnom Penh
Phnom Penh’s equivalent to Cheers, the place where everyone knows your name. Ran by Pat Hurney from Dublin, Ireland, The Irish Place is the only TRUE Irish Bar in the city of Phnom Penh. The Irish Place is full of Expats who come for the cold beer, atmosphere and the FOOD!!
Best option to order on the menu is the Fish and Chips. If you manage to fish this serving you are doing very well for yourself! (a half portion option is available)
If you manage to wake up early, get yourself to The Irish Place for full Irish Breakfast, complete with tea and toast! This is by far the best breakfast in PP and luckily is still not too famous. But for sure the word will spread like wild fire!
The toasted sandwiches are the best in town, proper bread, proper cheese and peppered ham that is second to none!
The Irish Place also offers accommodation upstairs so be sure to check it out!
- Katy Peri’s Pizza – https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Qc2IMxyLhAw
First of all this is a mobile wood fired pizza oven that makes the best pizzas in PP! Hands Down! It only opens after dark because the guys who work there have other jobs in the morning. After 11pm it can be found on the corner of St 51 and St 172 and it will stay there until about 4am or until they run out
So its location varies during the the week 5pm-10pm:
Thursday – Showbox
If I didn’t mention it already, this is the best pizza in PP! Small pizza’s start from $3 to $5 for a large! Words can’t justify the taste of this pizza. Just ask any person who lives in PP and they will tell you about it.
It is usually consumed at about 3am after Howies or Love Bar. If you are lucky, you will get a seat and a table to eat off of.
- Restaurant 18 – St 108 (Next to the Night Market)
This is a local Khmer beer garden style place where you can find all the local delicacies and free flowing Anchor! The menu is similar to a phone book and is full of pictures of the food that they have to offer. There is always a BBQ flaming in front of the restaurant, a fish tank that offers the freshest of fish and personal cook-it-yourself gas burners for soup or fried meats.
Some of the best dishes on the menu are the fried frog, mango salad, battered prawns and the whole fried fish.
With jugs of Anchor going for $2 a pop, it is a great place to meet with friends, chat, drink and eat before the night ahead
I’m starting to get hungry now so I’m going to stop!