Hi guys, sorry for the lack of updates lately, but I’m glad to announce that I’m finally done with exams. I’m officially freeeeeee!! I’m in a surprisingly cheerful and happy mood despite how deprived of sleep I am. But anyway, enough about me, I’m sure you guys only read for the food. #NoShame. Hahah.
Let me just rave about Phom Penh. Even the name has the word “nom” in it. Enough said. The magic in Phom Penh lie in their butter beef and chicken wings. They are must order items. I will shake my head at you if you come here and don’t try these two items. Seriously, they’re awesome.
Marinated butter beef ($13.95): The thin slices of rare beef are served in a sauce made up of complex flavours. It is savoury and tangy, slightly sweet and incredibly flavourful. The cilantro and fried garlic really compliments it. The acidity in the dish totally revs up an appetite. The beef is tender, but a little clumpy and hard to separate into pieces to share, but who wants to share anyway?! Just take the whole dish to yourself. (Jokes!) I have to mention that I have always had an aversion to raw meat, but this is the dish that converted me.
Phnom Penh deep fried chicken wings (L $13.50): I can only tell you how many times I’ve heard people compare these wings to crack. They are literally addictive. The chicken is fried to perfection, crispy on the outside, juicy on the inside. They’re seasoned with lime salt and pepper. These infamous babies are just unlike any other wings I’ve tasted. They’re so flavourful on their own that I don’t even dip it in the dipping sauce it comes with.
On this particular visit, we also ordered the beef luc lac, a hot and sour soup, dry noodles, a plate of veggies and dessert.
Filet beef luc lac on rice with egg ($10.95): The beef luc lac is another popular item at Phnom Penh. It is a very hearty dish. The beef is very soft and tender. The flavour is savoury and a little sweet. While the beef is saucy, there wasn’t enough sauce to go with the rice.
Phnom Penh hot and sour soup with prawns (S $12.95): This Cambodian soup really warms you up. There’s plenty of bean sprouts, sliced tomatoes and prawns in the bowl. It’s sweet and tangy with just a very mild kick, very tropical and complex. However, the flavours were a bit strong, so a few sips were more than enough for me. Also, this soup would’ve earned more brownie points if they used fresh pineapples instead of canned ones.
Phnom Penh dry two kinds of noodles (rice and egg noodles) ($7.95): The noodles were mixed with prawns, pork, pork innards, ground pork and dried shrimp. Served dry with a mushroom soy sauce. Make sure you mix the noodles before you eat it because the sauce gets lost. I’m not a fan of innards or dried shrimp and the flavour was pretty lackluster compared to everything else we ordered.
Sauteed gai lan ($11.75) This particular visit was with Totoro. Totoro always likes to order some veggies. The gai lan was fresh and tender, and the stems had a nice firm and crisp texture, however, they were pretty bland and way overpriced.
Nine layer cake ($4.85) These little cakes are so fun to eat, I just love peeling them, and eating them layer by layer. Probably psychology, but Baby-Paca agrees with me that they just taste better eaten this way. The texture is gelatinous and a little chewy. Flavour-wise, I’d say it’s comparable to pandan. I don’t actually think they taste any special, but I just like the interactive component, I’m just a kid that likes to play with her food.
Service is pretty minimal as per usual for casual Asian restaurants and cleanliness is a bit permissive at times. Phnom Penh gets pretty busy. There’s always a wait whenever I come here, but the chicken wings and butter beef are definitely worth it!
+1 (604) 682-5777
244 East Georgia Street, Vancouver