Grocery Shopping in Siem Reap | Wandering Soup
We actually went to the grocery store on our first day in Siem Reap and we were pleasantly surprised at our first foray in Angkor Market. It's very similar to shopping in the U.S. , including U.S. prices, and the selection included plenty of Western favorites mixed in with some common Asian items.
If anything I thought the Asian section was Western as well in that most of the products I've seen in the local farmers markets or ethnic grocery stores in the Atlanta region. If you are from a smaller food choice area of the world, your thoughts might differ. I'm still baffled by their love of Pringles along with the slew of flavor offerings. Really Pringles? Of all chips?
As mentioned pricing is randomly high with a lean toward higher for purely Western items that locals just wouldn't buy. Anything else is normal priced and nothing unexpected. Essentially you may be able to find that one item you have to have from home but you will pay for it. On the other hand you can be open and shop "local" flavors and ingredients.
The ground floor is all groceries in most stores with the first (second for us U.S. folks) containing pots, pans, cleaning supplies and various other sundries. It's one stop shopping on a small Wal-Mart scale. Speaking of pots and pans, they are ridiculously priced here. It's really baffling how a basic $5 pot in the U.S. will run you $25 here. Cups, mugs, plates all priced higher than cow tits. Someone really needs to open a Dollar Store here. Not me, but someone.
We tend to shop weekly because we cook at home more now versus when we first arrived and fresh veggies are plentiful and cheap. My tummy thanks me along with another lower orifice that shall remain nameless. If you are single I wouldn't even bother, it's cheaper to eat out daily, once your tummy has gotten use to the cooking standards. That being said, there are several grocery stores in Siem Reap, each slightly different but very similar. There's even a store similar to a Sam's Club or Costco. Depending on our mood, what part of town we may be in and what we are looking for, we vary which one we go to.
Shopping itself is interesting. We get more than our fair share of stares and follows. I'm not sure "yet" if it's due to skin color or the oddity of the skin color. Either way I'm over it. Now mind you I'm not complaining about the customer service just the abundance of workers when I'm on an aisle vs when I see others on the same aisle. Raisin in a glass of milk...
Here's a quick video of one of our latest shopping expeditions! Hopefully it makes sense of the rambling above.