[Stockport] Mekong Cat

Their first place, Angkor Soul (now Kambuja), in Marple, specialises in Cambodian food. We went in 2018 and had a pleasant evening but, with a couple of similarish Vietnamese restaurant nearer home, we never felt the need to schlep out to Marple again. This latest venture, which opened in Stockport town centre last year, spreads its menu wings wider to incorporate food from several of the countries that the Mekong river flows through – Laos, Thailand, Cambodia and Vietnam.

It’s a small, very casual place with wooden booth seating down one side, a few tables on the other and an open kitchen at the end. Midweek, it was full with diners being reminded of their two hour slot because other customers were due and walk-ins being turned away, so we were pleased we’d reserved. Service is willing and friendly.

We are omnivores but my partner decided to order from the vegan menu. To start, their non-meat take on wings. Very al dente cauliflower in a crisp, sweet chilli coating. Nice. And, to follow, bahn mi – the classic Vietnamese sandwich. Warm, crisp baguette stuffed with mushroom pate, vegan mayo, carrot, daikon, onion, cucumber and coriander. And your choice of protein – in this case, seitan. Nice sandwich.

I started with two very well made summer rolls, generously filled with noodles, veg, coriander and, for my choice of protein, prawns. They come with a lovely peanut dipping sauce. For a main, I ordered Mee Kathang, from the list of “non broth noodle” dishes. Now, I don’t know whether I was served the wrong dish or the menu description needs adjusting, but this was definitely “brothy”. Definitely, not what I was expecting or wanting. So, it’s that old dilemma. Do you send it back and watch your partner eat dinner and then later they watches you eat dinner. Or do you just get on with it and have dinner together. I got on with it, asking for a spoon. You needed a spoon – this was as brothy as a pho. It all tasted fine – noodles, chicken, veg – and lots of broth.

It’s fair to say that the food from this region is not high on our list of “favourite foreign cuisines”, and we always find menu choice a bit limited. So, whilst we’re pleased to know it’s there, I doubt we’re going to become regulars.


You’re right, John - they served you the wrong dish, or perhaps a wrongly-prepared dish, as Mee Katang is definitely not supposed to be brothy.

In the Khmer language, “Katang” means “Cantonese”, and “Mee Katang” is Cambodia’s take on Cantonese noodle stir-fry. The dish would have a thick, unctuous gravy - as a cornstarch slurry may be added towards the end of the cooking process for the gravy used to top the stir-fried noodles.

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Exactly as Peter described. Mee katang is verysmilar to Thai Lad Na.
Except for Issan and Laos food, those 4 cuisines don’t have all that much in common other than geography. Then to try adding in an entire vegan section to the menu, it sounds like they are overly ambitious. That said, your bahn mi sounds excellent. And if they’re so busy that they’re turning customers away, they must be doing something right, even if it’s only “something for everyone.”

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Thanks both. Peter’s description of what it should be ties in with the menu description. Served the wrong dish then. Hey ho.

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