I have fond memories about the old Cambodian Cuisine restaurant (since closed) in Fort Greene. The restaurant was one of my first food memories of NYC, and my very first introduction to Cambodian cuisine. So I ventured in last night, trying to keep my high expectations at bay - this was, after all, opening week.
The place is really spacious - definitely an upgrade from its former location. It's a clean bilevel space with high ceilings and modernish decor (along the lines of Sriphaphai's). The paint had barely dried - and in fact, I caught whiffs in between the wafting spice smells from around me.
I shared the fish patty app, 4 silver dollar sized whitefish patties with shredded lime leaf and kicky chilli spices, served with sweet/sour/spicy crunch veggie pickles with peanuts. The pickles were how I remembered them. The patties were perfectly seasoned. The chicken skewers (2pcs) with veggie pickles were tasty and seasoned nicely, though generally avg to good. The S.E.A. lemongrass (a hodgepodge saute of chicken and veggies) in a slightly citrusy lemongrass/galangal gravy was just eh. Not a whole lot of flavor for the intricate menu description, IMO. SO described as "boring" and it remained half eaten for the rest of the meal. The piquant coconut curry with chicken and vermicelli (more like a soup than anything) was tasty - with the right mix of spicy and sweetness. Those items plus two cambodian ice teas amounted to about 45 dollars. Fair enough pricing, for ample food, I thought. I'd love to return and try some of the other more exotic items when they've had time to settle in. There were definitely big issues with service (not that the staff weren't pleasant) and timing. I won't go into details of everything, but people waited (and waited) for their food and other things. Some were angrier than others.
After all I've heard about their labored and problematic opening process, I'm really rooting for them. They seem to have a lot of heart and I'm hoping they'll be able to bring it back to its former glory
BYOB for now.
1664 Third Ave (Nr 93rd St)
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