The traditional cuisine of land-locked Laos is not widely known outside the country itself. Lao food has simple flavours, composed of fresh, hearty ingredients, and is distinguished by its ubiquitous sticky rice, spicy meat or fish laap, as well as distinctive sour notes. Here are ten restaurants to discover in the UNESCO World Heritage Site Luang Prabang and capital city Vientiane.
Opened in 2005, Tamarind offers travellers a true taste of Lao cuisine and stands out in Luang Prabang’s culinary scene as one of the first, and finest, establishments to do so. For those unfamiliar with the unique flavours and textures of Lao food, Tamarind promises a gentle introduction to authentic, local home cooking with the freshest of ingredients, and is well known for its tantalising sampling platters and Friday night tasting events. This family-run business is headed up by Joy Ngeuamboupha and his Australian wife Caroline, who are always happy to explain how the dishes are cooked and, more importantly, how to eat them. For gourmands wishing to recreate the Lao dining experience at home, Tamarind also runs a cooking school, held in a picturesque lakeside pavilion, which includes an informative market tour.
Tamarind, Ban Vat Sene, Luang Prabang, Laos, +856 (0)20 77770484