When living or travelling abroad, a taste of one’s home can be more than just another meal, it can be a reminder of who you are and where you come from. This Australia Day, Phnom Penh’s Australian community will come together to celebrate at Aussie XL, the city’s most popular Australian restaurant and pub.
For the past four years, Aussie XL has been serving authentic Australian food to hungry Australians as well as diners from around Cambodia and the world. Its friendly staff and warm atmosphere have made it an institution on Rue de Pasteur.
Adelaide native Peter Stewart and his nephew Brian Stewart took the reins of Aussie XL a little more than a year ago and are frequently around the restaurant chatting with regulars or making new friends.
“Our goal with Aussie XL is to make it a home away from home for Australians and New Zealanders here in Phnom Penh,” the elder Stewart said.
In addition to Aussies, Kiwis and other foreigners, it is common to find Cambodians at Aussie XL, some coming alone and others with their Australian co-workers or friends. Stewart said his restaurant’s hamburgers and wood-fired pizzas were particularly popular with locals.
Australian cuisine features many dishes common in other cultures around the world – a reflection of the diversity of the immigrants that have populated the country during the 288 years following the arrival of the first British ships at Sydney Cove in 1788.
Aussie XL’s menu reflects these different influences, which range from English to Greek and Italian to Cantonese.
But for the uninitiated, there are some truly Australian experiences on offer at the restaurant, including Aussie Parma schnitzel, sausage rolls, pies, and of course, Aussie-style mixed grill. Diners in search of a complete Aussie dining experience can also choose from Australian wines by Yellow Tail and cold bottles of Coopers pale ale or sparkling ale.
As any Australian will tell you, Australia Day is not just an excuse to eat and drink one’s fill, it is also the day that people across the country turn on their radios for the annual Triple J Top 100 Countdown, which Stewart said will be broadcast live. In addition to the countdown, Aussie XL will be offering specials on roast lamb as well as $4 bottles of Coopers.
Aussie XL is located at Number 205A, Rue de Pasteur (Street 51) in BKK1.