Posted on 12 / 22 / 2014
I ate here 3 times during 10 days in Siem
Reap and after the first visit, I was ready to pronounce Chamkar my favourite restaurant in the WORLD! Unfortunately the second two dining experiences weren't quite as memorable but Chamkar still right up there.
It's a small place and, having sat inside, upstairs, and on the street, I'd say with certainty that the little table for two on the upstairs balcony is the one you want to secure, even if you have to book.
On our first visit we ordered the Wedding Day Dip, Rediscovering Tofu, and a rich, coconut based curry with sweet potato and cherry tomatoes. The dip is a rich, thick curry sauce, based on coconut, peanut, and mushrooms, served with slices of fresh, white baguette. It's heavy, delicately spiced yet warm and pungent. Totally decadent. Their standout dish by far. The tofu was nice too. Stuffed with I can't remember what and slightly tangy, sweet, and spicy. The curry was a winner as well. Again, expertly spiced with warm, woody flavours. I need to learn how to cook like that!
At lunchtime the next day I came alone and ordered the Monsoon Salad which I'd been hanging out for since the night before when I'd eyed it on the menu. It was a great, fresh balanced dish. Perfect for lunchtime on a hot day but wasn't nearly as impressive as our meal the night before.
We were excited to come again for dinner on my birthday. Sadly, I don't remember much about our meal that evening. I think it was fine but obviously not outstanding. We tried another, lighter curry dish which didn't really live up to our expectations.
The take home message: their rich, coconutty dishes are their strong suit. Don't miss them!
Wedding Day Dip, coconut curries , polite staff, pleasant atmosphere
menu not full of all stars