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Cambodian Cuisine Returns - in a truck

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Longtime Brooklynites, may remember the Cambodian Cuisine restaurant that stood prominently in the middle of pre-gentrified Fort Greene. It's giant sign stood out and, well before pho and banh mi became common parlance in the food world, it was one of the only Southeast Asian places outside of the city's three Chinatowns.

It's long since closed and the location has been the home of Smoke Joint, the barbecue-centered sibling of Peaches and Peaches Hothouse.

I had only ever been to Cambodian Cuisine a few times and only really remembered it as a landmark of a lost time. Regardless, I have wondered, from time to time, what ever became of them. Last week, I found out when I stumbled upon their newly launched food truck, Cambodian Cuisine Torsu across from Washington Square Park in The Village.

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Next to the truck, beside the pictures of various food options, there's a posting board papered with articles and blog posts and a three page statement from the owner decrying the injustices that forced them under and the mobbed up lawyer who screwed him.


The menu itself is full of options that I hope to sample as the weather warms up. When we were in Cambodia, the tourist town we were in mostly catered to foreigners and the food didn't really amount to much. I'd like to get a better idea of what the cuisine is really all about.

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This time around, I chose to get the only sandwich on the menu. With banh mi on my mind so much lately, I thought I'd see if it was anything like the Cambodian sandwiches I had in Siem Reap or at least the deliciousness of Num Pang.

Sadly, it was neither. Sure there was some crumbly sausage lining the side of the roll, but the rest of it was turkey and ham cold cuts swaddled in mayo and jammed with iceberg lettuce.

Disappointing, though it was, I'm thinking that the addition of the sandwich may just be their attempt to be 'with it' and not really the thing they specialize in. The people were very nice and after the nonsense they had to deal with, I wish them the best of luck. I will definitely return and look forward to snacking on some of their dishes on a sunny afternoon in the park.

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