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Exquisite Lao cuisine in the heart of Hà Nội
by Bảo Ngọc
The food of Laos is a representation of the country as a whole: untouched, intense, and unique. It is sometimes overshadowed by the more well-known cuisines of its neighbours (Thailand, Việt Nam and China), but its unique flavours are unforgettable.
If you’re looking for the best Lao food in Hà Nội, make sure to check out the restaurants on our recommended list.
Address: 1st floor, building M3 – M4, 91 Nguyễn Chí Thanh, Đống Đa District, Hà Nội
Opening time: 11:00 – 13:30, 18:00 – 21:00
Khao Lao is a popular choice among many excellent Lao eateries in Hà Nội.
The restaurant’s design is one of a kind, fusing sophisticated and opulent elements with understated dark brown tones.
You may be taken aback by the restaurant’s striking decor, which is inspired by Lao culture. The restaurant decorates several areas with eye-catching embellishments, making it great for photographs.
There are more than 50 options on the menu, ranging from appetisers to main courses, and they include aromatic herbs, rice, noodles, fish, chicken, beef, and pork.
Lao salad, vegetarian silkworms, tofu with tamarind sauce, Lao sticky rice and seafood dishes including pan-fried prawn vermicelli and mango salad with deep-fried fish are some of the restaurant’s bestselling dishes.
However, when visiting Khao Lao, you shouldn’t miss out on the seabass with three-spice sauce, duck larb, seafood spring rolls with durian sauce, or the suki hot pot.
Though prepared with Vietnamese ingredients, the dishes at Khao Lao nonetheless maintain the quality of Lao flavour, much to the delight of the diners.
Address: 296 Lê Trọng Tấn, Thanh Xuân, Hà Nội
Opening hours: 9:00 – 23:00
Lào MeLao restaurant is another appealing option for those fascinated in knowing more about Lao cuisine.
This restaurant is famed for its refreshing beer, perfect for the scorching heat of summer. However, booze aside, the food here is also sure to please guests.
Lào MeLao is a hip hangout with plenty of room and a classic pub design. You’ll get a warm and welcoming vibe here, with the decor reminiscent of Vietnamese bars.
The restaurant’s chefs have extensive expertise crafting foods to go with Lao beer, guaranteeing an enjoyable dining experience for patrons. There’s a story in every bite, and the way the flavours mingle in each dish is something to behold.
Address: 59 Nguyễn Khánh Toàn, Dịch Vọng Ward, Cầu Giấy District, Hà Nội
Operating hours: 09:00 – 23:00
Even though it has only been open for a short time, Lào Quán has already made a lasting impression on lovers of authentic Lao cuisine.
Everything about the restaurant’s cuisine, from the way it’s processed to the products it uses, is infused with Lao culinary tradition. It’s delicious and healthy as everything is made with all-natural ingredients and has no preservatives or additives.
Lào Quán’s architecture also has a youthful and dynamic style, and the walls are decorated with many colours, with unique and eye-catching images. It is a smooth combination between the two cultures of Việt Nam and Laos, both familiar and new.
The menu is also extremely diverse, combining Vietnamese and Lao cuisine. The decoration is also inspired by Lao culinary culture. The dishes are served in bamboo trays, banana leaves and woven baskets, creating a feeling of closeness to nature.
The restaurant is a gastronomic heaven, with more than 50 different Lao dishes available. A wide variety of meals, from snacks like crispy yellow fish and green mango salad to main courses such as stir-fried noodles with chicken and mushrooms, mixed vermicelli, braised pork sticky rice, minced beef porridge, and fried rice with pickled vegetables.
Some of the restaurant’s most popular dishes are Lao larb, duck larb, Tomyum soup, and rare roast beef. VNS
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Sesame-Crusted Tuna Tataki with Wasabi Cream and Mixed Salad
The combination of tropical fruit and succulent tuna, blended with rich wasabi cream of this standout starter is a perfect choice for those who are looking for a healthy and balanced meal.
The tuna is coated with toasted sesame seeds and then seared briefly on each side, resulting in a tender and juicy fish that is cooked to perfection. The mixed salad and a subtle kick of spicy wasabi cream provide a refreshing and crunchy texture that balances the flavours and adds more nutrients to the dish.
- Tuna: 120g
- Dijon mustard: 50g
- White sesame: 50g
- Black sesame: 50g
- Baby cucumber: 50g
- Cherry tomato: 30g
- Beansprouts: 10g
- Edible flowers: 3 pieces
- Wasabi mustard: 5g
- Whipping cream: 60g
• Marinate the tuna with yellow mustard, then roll in white and black sesame.
• Sauté the tuna for 10 seconds on each side.
• Thinly slice the baby cucumber and roll into delicate wheels
• Mix the wasabi mustard and whipping cream until the mixture thickens.
• Cut the tuna into thin slices and place on top of the mixed salad.
• Dab some mustard cream sauce on the tuna and around the plate.
• Garnish with beansprouts, edible flowers, cherry tomatoes, and cucumber
You can enjoy Sesame-Crusted Tuna Tataki or a Business Set Lunch at C’est La Vie Restaurant, 2nd floor, Mai House Saigon Hotel, 157 Nam Kỳ Khởi Nghĩa Street, Võ Thị Sáu Ward, Hồ Chí Minh City. Tel: +84 (0) 2873039000. — VNS
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