Phnom Penh After Dark
Phnom Penh is welcoming a host of new spots to have a memorable drink. By Naomi Lindt
Published on Mar 6, 2012Page : 1 2 3
THE PLACE For years, Metro Hassakan—or simply, Metro—has been the capital city’s go-to spot for classy cocktails, elegant nibbles and a refined yet casual atmosphere. So it makes sense that Metro’s second incarnation, Metro Rahu, has been a hit since opening up the street in July 2011. This is the darker, sexier, more ambient sister, with concrete walls and floors, black leather seating, low lighting and a somewhat sinister-looking painting of a young monk watching over customers. Cocktails are mixed behind the huge wooden bar, which flanks the entire length of the space. THE DRINKS Try the Ginger Rogers (mint, ginger syrup, gin, lime juice) or a tamarind martini, perfect with treats like truffle-infused mac ’n’ cheese. 159 Sisowath Quay; +855 23 215 179.
THE PLACE With empty bottles of vino used as decoration and vintage-stamped wooden tables reminiscent of wine crates, it’s not hard to guess what the theme of this French-run bar is. Settle into a cozy red-leather booth and sip your choice of pour in this tranquil, conversation-friendly gathering spot, where exposed brick, metal chandeliers, large windows and a dominant wooden bar create an industrial-rustic-chic setting. Look out for specialty theme nights, like the oyster and wine event. THE DRINKS Nearly 20 varieties of mostly French reds, whites and rosés are served by the glass, including Médoc and Château Doisy Daëne. There’s also a range of home-infused vodkas (pepper-vanilla, sweet basil, ginger) for one-of-a-kind martinis. 3 St. 246; +855 77 881 103.
Le Moon Terrace
THE PLACE Phnom Penh’s Tonle Sap riverside is at its most captivating at dusk, when the recently completed promenade comes alive with dance crews, exercise classes and vendors selling colorful balloons and fried crickets and grubs. Take in the action from on high at this sleek, minimalist lounge that offers unobstructed, 180-degree views of the river, the Royal Palace and the city’s saffron-hued temple rooftops from its perch above the Amanjaya Pancam Hotel. The city’s young and hip linger here well into the night, relaxing amid curved, woven gray sofas and chairs, light gray wood decking and huge potted plants. THE DRINKS Sip a mojito or a cocktail like the Khmer Happiness—locally made rice wine, fresh lime juice, a dash of melon syrup—while nibbling on a plate of salmon blini or prawn-wrapped bacon-wrapped prawns. Amanjaya Pancam Hotel, 1 St. 154, Sisowath Quay; +855 23 214 747.
THE PLACE Though the stretch of Street 51 where you’ll find this small, unassuming boîte is best known for its hostess bars and late-night dance clubs, it’s now also home to one of Phnom Penh’s most original drinking experiences. Don’t be fooled by L’Absinthe’s dive-bar appearance: genial Corsican owner Thibault Sargentini has shipped in nearly 20 varieties of the storied anise-based spirit that gave the spot its name, along with all the necessary accoutrements: petite glass goblets, intricately perforated spoons (for holding that cube of sugar) and a four-spout slow-drip absinthe fountain. THE DRINKS Bottles originate from France, Germany, the Czech Republic, Switzerland and Spain, spanning the palate from bitter to sweet. Ask Sargentini to recommend one to suit your taste. 216 St. 51; +855 97 285 3217.
Score Sports Bar & Grill
THE PLACE Concrete walls, cherry-red seating, soaring ceilings and artfully graffitied walls make this easily the capital’s most stylish spot to catch a game or play some pool at one of the imported slate tables. No wonder—the man behind it is Canadian Pascal Plamondon, whose cluster of Phnom Penh F&B ventures includes design-conscious bar-restos Liquid and Flavour. Mingle with football, cricket, rugby, American football and hockey fans, who flock here to watch their teams on one of the eight flatscreen TV’s or the gargantuan five-by-five meter projector screen. Pair your beverage with the bar’s hearty fare: char-grilled Tasmanian steaks; juicy burgers. THE DRINKS As you’d expect, beers feature heavily (Angkor draft, Anchor and Tiger on tap, bottles of Kingdom and Beer Lao), but there’s also a full cocktail list—don’t miss the well-made margaritas. 5 St. 282; +855 23 221 357.
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