So it turns out that those people that I accused of romanticising Cambodian rice a few years ago were right. The Phka Malis variety is the best in the world. From the International Rice Research Institute:
Cambodian rice variety Phka Rumduol, often called Phka Malis or Cambodia Jasmine Rice by rice millers and traders, was chosen as the “World’s Best Rice” during the Rice Traders World Rice Conference held in Hong Kong in November 2013.
Rice samples from several countries, including Cambodia, India, Myanmar, Thailand, and the United States, were evaluated in several rounds based on raw (chalkiness, head rice, shape, and size) and cooked qualities (gloss, color, stickiness, flavor and texture).
This was not the first time Phka Rumduol was recognized as such. In a similar competition at Bali, Indonesia in 2012, the variety was also chosen as “World’s Best Rice.”