Best restaurants in Laos

  • Top ChoiceRestaurants in Vientiane

    Doi Ka Noi

    It took one meal for Doi Ka Noi to become one of our favourite restaurants in Laos. With a menu that changes daily (check the restaurant's Facebook page at around 8.30am to see what's available), the dishes here range from Lao standards to regional specialities most of us have never heard of, with something to appeal to both newbies and grizzled foodies. The dining room has a charming old-school vibe with handsome food-related photos adorning the walls.

  • Top ChoiceRestaurants in Luang Prabang

    Paste

    Offering a Lao fusion menu inspired by the recipes of royal chef Phia Sing and sprinkled with some magic dust from Michelin-starred Thai chef Bongkoch 'Bee' Satongun, Paste brings fine dining to Luang Prabang. Try crunchy cured rice balls with sour sausage and clear curry with beef ribs, or the signature Bangkok Paste dish: yellow curry with blue swimmer crab. There are several tasting menus for those wanting to embark on a gastronomic journey to discover the best in traditional Lao cuisine with a twist.

  • Top ChoiceRestaurants in Vientiane

    Khambang Lao Food Restaurant

    The slightly dreary, semi-open-air dining room couldn't be a bigger contrast with the tart, spicy, bold flavours served inside. This long-standing restaurant is the ideal introduction to Lao food via dishes such as láhp (spicy Lao-style salad of minced poultry or fish); roasted Mekong fish; stuffed frogs; áw lám, described on the menu as 'spicy beef stew'; and tasty Luang Prabang–style sausage.

  • Top ChoiceRestaurants in Vientiane

    Nemnueng Sihom

    Nemnueng Sihom is a long-standing, bustling restaurant that offers a fun eating experience. It specialises in nǎem néuang (Vietnamese barbecued pork meatballs) sold in 'sets' (sut) with kòw Ъûn (white flour noodles with sweet-spicy sauce), fresh lettuce leaves, mint, basil, various sauces for dipping, sliced carambola (starfruit) and green banana – sort of a DIY spring roll.

  • Top ChoiceRestaurants in Northern Laos

    Riverside Restaurant

    Since being damaged by a storm, Riverside has come back better than ever. In the evening its Chinese lanterns sway in the breeze on the decked terrace, beneath the sentinel arms of an enormous light-festooned mango tree. Riverside has gorgeous cliff views, and its menu encompasses noodles, fried dishes, láhp (minced meat or fish salad with shallots and coriander) and Indian fare.

  • Top ChoiceRestaurants in Luang Prabang

    Khaiphaen

    Khaiphaen is a popular training restaurant run by NGO Friends International that operates a network of inspired venues across the region. The menu is Lao with a creative twist and includes buffalo carpaccio, five-spices pork belly and a pea and apple eggplant curry. The shakes are also creative. And do save space for the delicious desserts. Happy hour runs from 3pm to 6pm.

  • Top ChoiceRestaurants in Luang Prabang

    Tamarind

    On the banks of the Nam Khan, mint-green Tamarind has created its very own strain of 'Mod Lao' cuisine. The à la carte menu features delicious sampling platters with bamboo dip, stuffed lemongrass and meuang (DIY parcels of noodles, herbs, fish and chilli pastes, and vegetables). There's also buffalo láhp and Luang Prabang sausage. Deservedly popular.

  • Top ChoiceRestaurants in Vientiane

    Chokdee Cafe

    A Belgian restaurant and bar on the riverfront, Chokdee specialises in dishes from the homeland, including, of course, moules (mussels) and frites (French fries), as well as other hearty but delicious dishes for discerning gourmands. Consider the massive selection of imported Belgian beers, and you have one of the best places in town for non-Lao food.

  • Top ChoiceRestaurants in Luang Prabang

    Dyen Sabai

    One of Luang Prabang's top destinations for fabulous Lao food. The eggplant dip and fried Mekong riverweed are as good as anywhere. Most seating is on recliner cushions in rustic open-sided pavilions. It's a short stroll across the Nam Khan bamboo bridge in the dry season or a free boat ride at other times. Two-for-one cocktails between noon and 7pm.

  • Top ChoiceRestaurants in Vang Vieng

    Tham Mada

    The name here means 'normal', but there's lots that's unusual about this place. Chief among these is that the Korean owner is doing some of the better Thai-Lao food in town. Choose from a small menu that includes noodle soup, braised pork leg over rice, fried rice, and lighter dishes, all of which are prepared with care and are very tasty.

  • Top ChoiceRestaurants in Northern Laos

    Gecko Bar & Shop

    Handmade woven gifts and tea are for sale at this delightful, memorable little cafe (two-thirds of the way down the main drag, on your left heading south). There's a nice terrace to sit and read on, the owners are charming and the food, spanning noodles to soups, and pancakes to curries, is among the most raved about in the village.

  • Top ChoiceRestaurants in Vientiane

    Ka-Tib-Khao

    Ka-Tib-Khao (Rice Basket) has a reassuringly short and delicious menu of dishes, many from the country's north. Think sheets of deep-fried Mekong River weed served with a spicy dip, lemongrass-stuffed pork and Luang Prabang–style herbal sausages, all served in a setting that manages to feel both sophisticated and traditional.

  • Top ChoiceRestaurants in Luang Prabang

    Bouang Asian Eatery

    This attractive eatery on the main drag puts a smile on your face with its colourful chairs, funky light fixtures and mural-covered wall. The hand-written menu of exceptional (and affordable) 'Lao revision' food includes intriguing fusions like gnocchi green curry and cinnamon-pork stew. The plating is as playful as the vibe.

  • Top ChoiceRestaurants in Nong Khiaw

    Coco Home Bar & Restaurant

    Run by Sebastien and Chok, this leafy riverside oasis has a great menu, with dishes like papaya salad, mango sticky rice, mok phaa (steamed fish in banana leaves) and duck in orange sauce. It's arguably the best place in town to delight your taste buds. Eat in the lush garden or upstairs on the terrace.

  • Top ChoiceRestaurants in Savannakhet

    No Name Grill Place

    Keep your eyes peeled for smoke from the grill and uniformed officials – two signs of a good place to eat in Laos. This tin-roofed, dirt-floored place excels at anything grilled – simply point to what looks good – especially when coupled with sides of spicy papaya salad, hearty bamboo soup and sticky rice.

  • Top ChoiceRestaurants in Vang Vieng

    Korean Restaurant

    Initially, we were drawn in by the Bee Gees soundtrack, and were pleased to discover that this place does some of the better foreign food in town. Let the friendly Korean owner guide you to a dish, which will inevitably be accompanied by banchan, an array of tart, spicy, salty and crunchy side dishes.

  • Top ChoiceRestaurants in Vientiane

    PVO

    This fresh, no-frills eatery is one of the better places in town to grab lunch, and in addition to a variety of Vietnamese dishes, does some of the best kòw jee (Vietnamese-style baguette sandwiches) in town. Finish with the free, self-serve dessert bar.

  • Top ChoiceRestaurants in Central Laos

    Ping Kai Napong

    Ping Kai Napong specialises in grilled chicken, but the menu is a virtual tour of Lao cuisine, ranging from salads (the duck láhp – minced salad with shallots and coriander – is sublime) to soups. Easily the best of the riverside places.

  • Top ChoiceRestaurants in Vientiane

    Suzette

    This bright, contemporary-feeling place specialises in galettes (crêpes made with buckwheat flour). Pair yours with a dressed salad and a bottle of cider, and you have one of the tastiest, best-value French meals outside of the EU.

  • Top ChoiceRestaurants in Vientiane

    Pimentón

    Pimentón, with its open fire pit and beefy menu, is all about the meat. But to be honest, we didn't make it past the lengthy and appetising tapas menu. For a bit of everything, the set lunch (95,000K) is a wise strategy.