Here at the Jeepney Stop, food is akin to the Holy Grail. No travel adventure is complete without sampling the local fare. Consider your trip to Siem Reap a total failure if you don’t experience the street food and other cuisines that make the city a food-lover’s paradise.
From obscure alleyways to busy street corners, tourists should not miss out on the chance to sample the amazing array of cuisines that range from local Cambodian dishes to Western dining options. For the ultimate street food adventure, sample the many offerings in the Old Market and Pub Street Areas. The choices are endless!
For the best of the best, follow my food trail below:
• Bahn Mi – Imagine biting into a crusty and perfectly-toasted mini baguette and tasting the spicy, tender grilled pork and the shock of tart and refreshing coleslaw that balances out the heat. And all this for $0.50. Hungry yet? It’s the perfect early morning breakfast to energize you before heading out to explore the city. Where to find it? From Sivatha Boulevard, take a right after the Terrace of the Elephant restaurant (before even getting to Pub Street), walk straight towards the Old Market, along the way after the row of travel and tour offices, you’ll see the small cart with a smiling lady flipping pork skewers on the grill and cutting bread.
• Pho: For a huge bowl of Beef pho with fresh rice noodles, beef balls and a side of basil, cilantro and bean sprouts head over to the street vendor right beside the building where Club X is along Sivatha Boulevard. It’s right beside the convenience store and across Pub Street.
• Loklak: Right beside the Pho stand is another food cart serving traditional Khmer food, order the Loklak Fried Rice and a glass of Dragon Fruit shake or any shake you want. I personally prefer the Lemon.
• Amok: The best Amok is at the Khmer Family Restaurant. They serve it into a bowl fashioned from a banana leaf. You need to have rice on the side.
• Fried Crispy Noodles: Anywhere. I had my first taste of this outside Angkor Wat. It’s just like your standard instant ramen noodles but with vegetables, chili flakes and a fried egg. The perfect snack after an exhausting day of temple climbing.
• Fresh and Fried Spring Rolls: I’ve had fresh spring rolls every day during my stay there and nothing beats the one at the Khmer Family Restaurant along Pub Street. Fresh veggies, ground pork, baby shrimp wrapped in rice paper dipped in a delightful peanut sauce. YUM!!!
• Ice Cream: Hands down, head to Blue Pumpkin for a scoop of heavenly ice cream that comes in a wide variety of flavors. Lounge in their sofa to rest your aching feet and escape the searing heat of the sun.
• Coffee: Sure I like the Cambodian way of drinking coffee by adding lots of sweet milk but at the end of the day I needed my espresso-laden, steamed milk and foam-topped cappuccino. Cafe Central across the Old Market serves up the best coffee and the sexiest cup of foamy cappuccino goodness. Their western big breakfasts are equally awesome.
• Crepes: Well, Siem Reap was colonized by the French so of course they have crepes. Visit La Creperie, a quaint cafe within the city’s maze of alleys. From Pub Street, make your way through the alley beside Khmer Family Restaurant, go straight and take a left, you can’t miss it. The Banana Nutella Crepe is sinful. How can something so bad taste so good?!?! Answer me! I love the small native bananas they used that are not so sweet and not mushy at all.
Of course, don’t forget that the best kind of foodtrip is the one you make on your own. So follow your tastebuds and discover your own food trail!
Anyway, let’s not waste time on words and move on to the hunger-inducing pictures!!!