Logo of Phnom Penh Post newspaper Phnom Penh Post - Foodie file: Spicing things up at Phnom Penh’s Joub Klean



Foodie file: Spicing things up at Phnom Penh’s Joub Klean

Content image - Phnom Penh Post
Among Joub Klean’s most popular dishes is the green papaya salad with beef, which is sold at $10. Yousos Apdoulrashim

Foodie file: Spicing things up at Phnom Penh’s Joub Klean

Two movie stars and two young entrepreneurs have teamed up to start a new chapter as restaurateurs after a year of success in their online food business.

“We started our cloud kitchen more than a year ago. We were flooded with orders for delivery so we decided to open a restaurant where people could sit down and enjoy their meal comfortably,” says Sarat Thaymay, one of the restaurant’s owners.

Called “Joub Klean,” which means “meet [when we’re] hungry”, the restaurant focuses on four elements – sustainability, hygiene, taste and service.

“Having a physical store would enhance the customers’ experience and bridge our connection with them as compared to the takeaway service we used to run.

“Now they can talk to us and share their feedback, all while bearing witness to the quality service that we provide,” she says, as she admits they still have a long way to go for the newly-opened restaurant.

Located on Street 340 in Tuol Tompoung commune, Joub Klean serves spicy dishes on eco-friendly dinnerware.

Surrounded by coconut, mango and dwarf palm trees, along with some vibrant flowers, the restaurant was decorated to cater to frequent users of the photo and video-sharing platform, Instagram, says another owner Chioung Sovithyea.

“Our restaurant sets a nice background for their photographs. They can get nice selfies anywhere here, and enjoy the garden by day and the beautiful lighting by night. We want our restaurant to be as in touch with nature as it can,” he says.

The choice for eco-friendly dinnerware lines up with the Go Green initiative of another owner, actress Salath Sreylang, who actively engages in tree-planting and forest protection activities.

Aside from serving delectable dishes, Sreylang wanted to raise the customers’ awareness of the environment.

Content image - Phnom Penh Post
The papaya salad at Joub Klean is the result of the different tastes restaurant owner Sarat Thaymay cultivated from her experiences travelling across Asia. Yousos Apdoulrashim

However, she admits that it has been a challenge trying to convince their customers that the bamboo straws are the healthier and greener option.

“I’ve tried to replace plastic straws with bamboo ones even though I’ve heard some customers say they preferred the former because they were easier to use and seemed cleaner,” she says.

Bamboo straws are sterilised and cleaned properly before they reach the dining tables, assures Sreylang.

“Switching to sustainable products is not a cheap choice. A bamboo straw costs 100 riel (2.5 US cents). With that kind of money, we could actually purchase dozens of plastic straws but we are committed to sticking to the more sustainable alternative.

“We’re also considering sourcing sustainable food containers and biodegradable bags for our takeaway service soon,” she says.

Among the restaurant’s most popular dishes are the green papaya salad set, grilled seafood and beef and green papaya salad with beef – all sold at $10. Deep-fried green papaya salad ($4) and Laos-inspired beef larb ($3) also tops the list.

Another favourite, the spicy green papaya salad – or bok lahong – can be served with different side dishes such as meatballs ($7), pork belly or deep-fried fish ($7.50), assorted seafood ($10) or a giant platter ($15).

Content image - Phnom Penh Post
Surrounded by coconut, mango and dwarf palm trees, along with some vibrant flowers, the restaurant was decorated to cater to frequent users of the photo and video-sharing platform, Instagram. Yousos Apdoulrashim

Thaymay, who is in charge of the menu, says: “The deep-fried papaya salad here is one of a kind. We have a special technique used in deep frying the papaya slices and preparing the sauce. I developed this recipe with my friend, a skilful chef from Thailand.”

Inspired by Thai street food, she says their papaya salad is the result of the different tastes she’s cultivated from her experiences travelling across Asia.

In addition to dining, the restaurant also set aside an area for people who plan to drink until late at night.

“They can sit on the spot under the bridge. It has been bedecked with beautiful lighting. We dim the light to give off a chill vibe,” she says.

Though only a few weeks have passed since its establishment, the four co-owners are already eyeing an expansion at Kampot province, which prides itself with delicious seafood.

Joub Klean is located at No 14, Street 430, Phsar Doeum Thkov commune, in the capital’s Chamkarmorn district. For more information, contact 010 728 299 or 093 748 797.

Watch video:

MOST VIEWED

  • Cambodia unveils new quarantine regulations

    The government has modified Covid-19 quarantine requirements, shortening the duration for, among others, Cambodian officials, foreign diplomats and delegations, investors and inbound travellers in general. According to an official notice signed by Minister of Health Mam Bun Heng late on October 16, quarantine length for Cambodian

  • Cambodia sets new Covid-19 quarantine rules

    The government has modified Covid-19 quarantine requirements, shortening the duration for, among others, Cambodian officials, foreign diplomats and delegations, investors and inbound travellers in general. According to an official notice signed by Minister of Health Mam Bun Heng late on October 16, quarantine length for Cambodian

  • Hun Sen: Cambodia set to fully reopen

    Prime Minister Hun Sen concludes that the October 5-7 Pchum Ben public holiday, during which many people either flocked to their hometowns for family reunion or gathered at tourist attractions across the country, has not caused an outbreak of Covid-19. In a special address to

  • Will Evergrande change the way Chinese developers do business in Cambodia?

    China’s property sector policy has exposed the grim financial condition of real estate developers including those operating in Cambodia, which raises questions over the viability of their projects and business going forward The dark blue netting draping over one of Yuetai Group Co Ltd’

  • Cambodia resumes issuance of tourist visas

    The Ministry of Foreign Affairs and International Cooperation has announced the resumption of its tourist visa and visa exemption programme after a long hiatus due to the Covid-19 pandemic. In a letter dated October 20 and addressed to foreign embassies and consulates, foreign minister Prak Sokhonn

  • S’ville set to turn into ‘second Shenzhen’

    The Ministry of Economy and Finance has awarded a master plan consultancy contract to top Chinese institute for the development and transformation of Preah Sihanouk province into a “Model Multi-Purpose Special Economic Zone”, Southeast Asia’s next logistics and resort hub and innovation centre. The