the cause was great, the setting interesting, the food, well left you eyeing the door… to the exit or the bathroom, whichever was closer. if this is the food that people who are not living with landmines and poverty have to endure, you really have to feel for those who are still living in cambodia right now.
As a part of ‘Night of a Thousand Dinners‘, we decided to go to Angkor Restaurant on Queen East.
Our host was great – jolly and personable with an effusing passion for his cause – erradicating land mines from cambodia. While one might question his style, you can’t question his dedication. The entrance wall is covered with newspaper and magazine clippings of Chandaramony (our host) along with guests such as Jean Chretien, Jack Layton, Bill Graham, among others. There was even a framed letter from the current King of Cambodia (considering that Cambodia is communist, I’m not sure where this king currently is) thanking Chandaramony for his commendable efforts.
But that is where the praise stops. The atmosphere of the restaurant is a bit sketch – with way too many oversized fish swimming around aquariums which normally would only hold one of the fish. The entire time you’re eating, you’re staring at these massive fish knocking each other around. Unfortunately, the food at the restuarant also does not make you want to sit around and learn more about Cambodia’s plight. I’m still not sure I could tell someone what Cambodian food is. While it was amusing to hear that cambodian food was stolen by the Thai, or that the cambodian name for Pad Thai is Stir-fry noodles, the joke grew old quick and left the impression that just any foods were being thrown together and passed off as Cambodian. The dishes comprised of chicken fried rice, stir fried veggies (the kind you’d get in a 3am chinese restaurant), Pad Thai, Tom Yam soup (apparently the Cambodian name is Mushroom soup), beef chow mein, and some chicken dish that was so spicy that it made your nose run.
On a positive note, the food was bearable and didn’t make me sick as I was expecting and so I would recommend to visit the restaurant if only to learn more about the tragic situation in Cambodia. Below are some links that are worth looking at
and here is a site with a review by another dinner guest – it’s a bit kinder that I am….