It was a night of elegance and sophistication. Malis put on a fine show of the best food Cambodia has to offer.
Located by the riverside of Siem Reap rests a newly built, palace-like building, which is home to the top Cambodian restaurant in the country – Malis.
Malis plans to ‘safeguard the the nations food heritage for years to come.’ The elaborate menu at Malis truly did showcase some incredible Cambodian food that I am so excited to share with my readers!
Walking in to Malis, I was in awe of the scale of the restaurant, the high roof, the massive sandstone walls, the huge lotus-style chandeliers – incredible!
Stepping out of our tuk tuk, we were greeted by our lovely hostess for the evening, Leakena, who showed us to our table and walked us through the menu for the night.
For entree, we ordered the Takeo Sausages ($9) The Cambodian Skewers ($11) and the Royal Mak Mee ($9).
The Takeo Sausages are made on site using pork mince and coconut shavings. I am not a huge sausage fan, as they usually are very oily and lack flavour. However I would eat these any day! They were very meaty, and lean, with an incredible flavour. I would go as far as to say that these were the best sausages I have ever eaten.
The Cambodian Skewers of tender beef, chicken and pork, marinated in a blend of Kroeung, young peppercorns, chilli and brown sauce. These skewers were very delicious, however I found them to be a little undercooked, and unfortunately I couldn’t finish eating them.
The Royal Mak Mee is a salad that I am still day-dreaming about! It was magical!! Crisp noodles with pork and lemon grass, this salad was so tasty. Apparently, this is the royal Palace’s recipe, and I can see why – it was a salad definitely fit for a king.
For our main, we ordered the Baked Goby Fish with Young Mango Dip, he Kampot Rock Crab Red Curry, and the Kampot Crab Fried Rice. The Gobi fish was the stand out dish of the night! It was baked in salt, and was cut apart at the table by the waiter and served. Goby fish is from the Tonle Sap, and has the texture of crab! I couldn’t believe this. It was the most beautiful, delicate texture, with so much meat and so little bones.
The Crab Curry was full of big, vibrant flavours, yet had the lightness of Khmer Curry, because of the addition of coconut milk. The crab was cooked to perfection, it was very succulent! The only downside was that I felt embarrassed to dive right into the crab with my hands and get all of that delicious meat out, as Malis was very fine dining!
We also ordered the Crab fried rice which was just a standard fried rice, nothing too special about it other than the fact that there was a huge juicy crab sitting on top of the rice!
For dessert we ordered the Durian Delight, however they were out of Durian ice cream, so it was coconut ice-cream. It came with three dessert elements; Taro style dumplings cooked in coconut milk and ginger sauce with Num Ko corn and coconut ice cream. The Coconut ice cream wasn’t as creamy as I would have liked, it was a bit more on the icy side, yet was still very refreshing. The Taro dumplings in coconut sauce were dreamy! The dumplings were extremely soft – the texture was similar to Japanese Mochi. The Num Ko corn was okay, it had a bit of an odd texture but I still enjoyed all of the elements of the dish.
Ultimately, I had an incredible time at Malis and was so privileged to try the food! It was my favourite food experience of my entire 1.5 months in Cambodia, and I would recommend this restaurant to anyone visiting Siem Reap or Phnom Penh.
Malis, Siem Reap
Pokambor Avenue, Siem Reap Riverside, Siem Reap, Cambodia
ph: 016 804 888
*recollectionsoffood were invited to dine at Malis by the Thalias Group, however all opinions are our own.