Khmer cuisine is a voyage of discovery, but sometimes all you really want is the comforting taste of home. These are the international chains and restaurants that should be on your radar.
There comes a time in every holiday when all you really want is a pizza. Or fried chicken. Or a coffee that isn’t made with sweet milk and served in a plastic bag. The good news is that international chains are popping up all over Phnom Penh.
One of the world’s biggest fast food brands, KFC, is now well and truly established with a total of nine outlets across the capital rolling out “finger lickin’ good” deep-fried chicken pieces coated in Colonel Sanders’ patented recipe of 11 herbs and spices.
If you find yourself daydreaming about flame-grilled burgers, take solace in the fact that Burger King has multiple outlets in the capital. They have all the favourites you’d find back home. Grab a King Box for great value and variety.
Another major US burger chain now in the Kingdom is Carl’s Jr., which has come to the Cambodian market with a menu stacked with iconic hamburgers, including The Super Star with Cheese, and the Western Bacon Cheeseburger. They share their BKK1 premises with Cold Stone Creamery, which has another outlet in Toul Kork selling their irresistible ice creams.
An international chain renowned for its great tasting Italian food is Pastamania, with affordable dishes that can now be enjoyed at their convenient Riverside location. While you are visiting the restaurant, enjoy a delicious Italian artisanal gelato at Gelatofix located in the same venue.
Hard Rock Cafe has arrived in Phnom Penh (there’s been one up in Siem Reap since 2014), so you can savour authentic American cuisine such as their Original Legendary Burger, fresh salads, and flavourful sandwiches, while marvelling at the numerous rock memorabilia that adorns the walls.
The Pizza Company has the standard selection of pasta, pizzas, salads and appetisers which are ‘flavoured to excite’. Look out for special Asian tastebud treats such as Tom Yum Kung pizza topping (chilli paste, prawns, calamari and mushroom) and Tropical Seafood.
Domino’s Pizza has has quickly become a firm favourite among Khmers to grab a slice. All your favourites are here with their signature base. Enjoy a Pepperoni, Hot & Blazing, or Meatzza pizza amongst others, along with chicken wings, cheesy bread, and Chocolate Lava Cake
Auntie Anne’s is the classic US franchise that sells hand-rolled pretzels and freshly-squeezed lemonade. Customer favourites like the Original Pretzel, Cinnamon Sugar and Sweet Almond are a must try.
Tous Le Jours is a French-Asian Bakery serving a unique selection of bakery goods made with the highest quality ingredients from South Korea. They have a huge range of savoury and sweet breads, pastries, and cakes.
For a coffee fix there’s an abundance of places in the capital. Costa Coffee is part of the UK’s most popular coffee chain, which was founded in London in 1971. Here you can sip the ultimate handcrafted cappuccino and enjoy a blueberry muffin on the side. Since opening its doors in December 2012 in BKK1, a string of other branches have followed suit with more outlets expected to open in the future.
Global coffee giant Starbucks has also a presence in the Kingdom. At the time of writing, there are four outlets of this massively successful cafe: in the airport, inside Aeon Mall, in BKK1, and now at Sorya Mall also.
Krispy Kreme, meanwhile, is ready to satisfy sugar addicts’ cravings for real American doughnuts and quality coffee.
For those really hot days you’ll likely want to grab a crisp, smooth. refreshing Pepsi from any of the multitude of outlets that sell it.