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Pick your own juice - in Laos.  <img src='http://www.guidegecko.de/images/spyglass1.png' align='texttop' /> Click for full image
Travel Guide > Asia > Laos

Laos Restaurants & Eating

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Lao cuisine is very similar to the food eaten in the north-eastern Isaan region of Thailand: being very spicy, more often bitter than sweet, and using lots of fresh herbs and vegetables served raw. Some of the raw vegetables can be used to cool your mouth when the chilis are overwhelming.


Rice is the staple carbohydrate. The standard kind is sticky rice (khao niaow), eaten by hand from small baskets called tip khao. Using your right hand, pinch off a bit, roll into a ball, dip and munch away.


The national dish is laap (also larb), a "salad" of minced meat mixed with herbs, spices, lime juice and, more often than not, blistering amounts of chili. Unlike Thai larb, the Lao version can use raw meat (dip) instead of cooked meat (suk), and if prepared with seafood makes a tasty if spicy carpaccio.

Tam Maak Hung

Another favourite is tam maak hung, the spicy green papaya salad known as som tam in Thailand, but which the Lao like to dress with fermented crab (pudem) and a chunky, intense fish sauce called pa daek, resulting in a stronger flavor than the milder, sweeter Thai style. Other popular dishes include ping kai, spicy grilled chicken, and mok pa, fish steamed in a banana leaf.

Khao Jil Pat-Te and Pho

In addition to purely Lao food, culinary imports from other countries are common. Khao jii pat-te, French baguettes stuffed with pate;, and foe (pho) noodles from China are both ubiquitous snacks particularly popular at breakfast. Note that foe can refer both to thin rice noodles (Vietnamese pho) as well as the wide flat noodles that would be called kuay tiow in Thailand.


Lao coffee (kaafeh) is widely reckoned to be amongst the best in the world. It's grown on the Bolaven Plateau in the south; the best brand is Lao Mountain Coffee. Unlike Thai coffees, Lao coffee is not adulterated with ground tamarind seed. To make sure you aren't fed overpriced Nescafé instead, be sure to ask for kaafeh thung. By default in lower end establishments, kaafeh lao comes with sugar and condensed milk; black coffee is kaafeh dam, coffee with milk (often, however, you'll get non-dairy creamer) is kaafeh nom.

Tap water

Tap water is not drinkable, but bottled water is cheap and widely available.
There is not much nightlife outside of Vientiane and Vang Vieng. To have a beer in some places, simply visit a restaurant.

Restaurants in Laos

International Blue Lagoon Restaurant
Offers Luang Prabang-Lao highlights and Swiss classics as well as tender local beef and a large variety of delicious snacks and fresh salad creations. The generously compiled drink list provides an exquisite selection of wine, fruit juice, cocktails, mocktails, ... more
in Luang Prabang
International Boulevard Restaurant
A new Al Fresco style restaurant under the same wing of New Daraphet Villa behing JoMa Bakery. Owner has recently brought in sound equipment and a new acoustic guitar for music enthusiasts to jam. The restaurant has 2 sides for both proper dining and casual drin... more
in Luang Prabang
International Cafe 5/6
A nice two-floors cafe to relax and enjoy great tapas (10000 to 20000 Kiep) and shakes. They have chill background music and WiFi internet access. Located on Chao Fa Ngnum (about 150m West of the Post Office (La Poste).
in Luang Prabang
Vegetarian Hmong Night Market (Vegetarian + Vegan)
One food stall says vegetarian and the other "végétalien" (vegan). Approximately 5000 K for a plate. Cash only. Market is open 5PM-10PM.
in Luang Prabang
International "The House"
Belgium's only Restaurant & Bar in Luang Prabang. Excellent price-quality cuisine. It has an appealing range of Belgian Beers, Cocktails and Word Wines. Well known for it's Lasagna, Beef Stews, Asian Curries, French Fries and also Belgian Chocolat... more
in Luang Prabang
International Indochina Spirit
Excellent Lao and Thai cuisine. Great value. Everything is tasty but try the minced fish and aubergines. Has old, stuffy, and not so pleasant odor in the interior tables, so be warned.
in Luang Prabang
International L'Elephant
Around the corner from Saffron Caffe. A lovely restaurant with a unique mix of Laotian and French cuisine. The food is extremely good, but has its price. It is directly in front of a small guesthouse, and not far away from Les 3 Nagas hotel and Villa Santi hote... more
in Luang Prabang
International Sala Caf&#xE9;
Nice place with a view on the Nam Khan river. This restaurant-bar offers an open air terrace where you can relax while trying homemade Vietnamese,French and Lao specialities. Menu regulars are pastries, Bourdaloue tart,Mango crumble,Chocolate mousse and cocktail... more
in Luang Prabang
Bakery Scandinavian Bakery
Serves western quality breakfasts, burgers and pizzas. Food must be paid for before eating.
in Luang Prabang
Dessert Shakes & Crepes
a no name place serving delicious shakes for 5000 kip and fantastic sweet crepes starting from 7000 kip. In front of Croissant d'Or on the main street.
in Luang Prabang
These are just 10 of 97 Restaurants in Laos. Show more.

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