City: Phnom Penh
Rating: 4.5 out of 5
Seating: Indoor and outdoor
It is about time I reviewed this restaurant as one of their dishes serves as the cover photo for this section of the blog. Dim Sum Emperors was one of the first restaurants I dined in when I first arrived in Phnom Penh and I have been going back ever since. There are many great Chinese restaurants in the city, but few that do dim sum and even fewer that do it as well as they do. All the classics are on the menu including har gow, shu mai and pot stickers. But the star of the dim sum menu is no doubt the Xia Long Bow, or soup dumplings. And they really live up to their name as each one is filled with flavorful and piping hot soup every time you bite in. But what really sets apart this restaurant from the other Chinese establishments in town is the fact that they serve Western versions of Chinese cuisine. The most important of these is of course the sweet and sour pork, which is tender chunks of pork battered and deep fried then smothered in a sweet and pungent red sauce. The dish comes with an assortment of vegetable bites tossed in with the sauce and is an American-Chinese classic. There are a few other places in town that serve this dish, but Dim Sum Emperors no doubt has the superior version.
Other favorites are on the menu as well from several different kinds of fried rice, noodle soups and the Peking duck is also a must try. The service and staff are very attentive and knowledgeable about the menu. Unfortunately they do not speak much English, but still manage to get every order correct. There is seating inside and outside for those that smoke. The main dining area is spacious and air conditioned and gives customers a direct view of the kitchen so that they can watch the chefs create all of their wonderful dishes. The next time you are in Phnom Penh and crave some authentic dim sum, or some true Western-Chinese fare Dim Sum Emperors should be your first stop.
City: Phnom Penh
Cuisine: French/Western Fine Dining
Rating: 5 out of 5
Seating: Indoor and Outdoor
The best breakfast in Phnom Penh has to be at the Khema Pasteur. They have a wide selection of pastries from croissants and danishes to doughnuts and freshly baked bread. What really shines from their offerings are their egg dishes as they have both an eggs benedict with ham and an eggs royale with salmon. They prepare their eggs with great care as they are perfectly poached over a fresh toasted muffin and topped with a creamy hollandaise sauce. If poached is not your preference then you will definitely want to try the scrambled eggs as they are the creamiest concoction you will ever taste. Additional offerings such as their pancakes and french toast are as much a feast for the eyes as they are for your stomach. And the best part about their breakfast is that for $11 you have the option to make it free flowing, as in all you can eat! Make as many trips to the pastries counter as you want; order as many pancakes as your taste buds can handle and order an endless parade of delectable eggs however way you like them.
Khema is also the perfect place to have lunch in the middle of your busy day as the service is very efficient and food is prepared from the kitchen in a very timely manner. For a great lunch you will definitely want to try the Khema burger, which comes with an insane onion marmalade that now has to be my favorite burger topping. And the ambiance of the restaurant also offers the perfect fine dining experience for dinner as well. You will definitely want to start your meal with a starter as many varieties of appetizers, soups and salads are offered. I highly recommend the lobster bisque, a creative rendition of this classic soup that includes a crab ravioli and a cheese gratin. Their selection of mains includes many great pastas, burgers and steaks. My personal favorite is the beef wellington which is surprisingly one of the best I have ever tasted. The meat inside is cooked to a perfect medium rare, very tender and covered in a flaky puff pastry.
Khema is also known for their special events which are scheduled on a daily and weekly basis. I already mentioned the wonderful free flowing breakfast, but they also offer high tea every day from 2:00 PM to 5:00 PM for only $6 per person. The event includes a wide selection of sweet and savory bites along with an assortment of buffet items, all served with a pot of tea. If tea is not your preference than Khema also has a Wine & Dine event every Thursday from 6:00 PM to 8:00 PM for $22.90 per person. The event includes an endless flow of wine, fine cheeses and charchuterie. Phnom Penh offers some of the best fine dining experiences in all of Asia and the Khema Pasteur is a shining example of this fact.
Cambodian Food Scene
Cambodia is surprisingly filled with many great restaurants, from inexpensive to those closer to Western prices. These are just a collection of my favorite places to eat throughout the country.