Tag Archives: French Indochina

Baguettes in Cambodia

It’s Bastille Day today – and that means ETW is going to be featuring some French food. But this year how about something a bit different in terms of Gallic cuisine? When we were in Cambodia a few weeks ago we were struck by the sheer amount a baguettes for sale. Yeah, French baguettes piled precariously high on nearly every food cart! Cambodia, along with Vietnam, was part of French Indochina until the 1950s, and the French seem to have left behind a culinary legacy – at least in terms of omnipresent baguettes.

Leave a comment

Filed under World Eats

French Indochina: Le Colonial

Le Colonial
N. Rush
Chicago, IL

180px-flag_of_colonial_vietnamsvgYes, we are aware that French Indochina does not exist. However, Le Colonial does its best to channel a romantic fin-de-siècle Vietnamese atmosphere with elegant decor and potted palms. We enjoyed a very continental 9 o’clock dinner, which was too dark for a good ambiance shot – so here’s a photo from the restaurant’s website. The menu itself is a fusion of Vietnamese dishes with some French flavors and techniques.interiorlc

To start off we ordered a few appetizers. M ordered Banh cuon (9.50), which was a chicken and mushroom stuffed rice noodle ravioli. It came with a delicious lime garlic sauce. L started with Tom cuon ram (10.50) which were shrimp beignets with an orange ginger sauce.

For entrees, L ordered the Tom xao sate ($24), which was a sauteed mixture of spicy shrimp and asparagus over a bed of rice. This is not a dumbed-down dish. It had more than a little heat to it and some great bite from the garlic and ginger. M ordered Ga xao xa ot (19) lemongrass-flavored chicken and portobello mushrooms, with a basil chili sauce. M felt the lemongrass was a bit overpowering, but L being a lemongrass lover was not bothered.

We don’t know how we had any room left after all of that food, but the Ciao Bella gelato looked enticing so we each had a scoop of mango (M requested his with chocolate sauce). And perhaps coolest of all, as we were sipping on our after-dessert espresso we had a Stephanie Izard sighting. Guess we were in the right place!

Leave a comment

Filed under Reviews