Lao style

While not as famous as the cuisines of neighbouring countries, Lao food still has plenty going for it. Most main meals come with sticky rice, while a popular cooking method involves using varieties of spicy pastes.


The national drink of Laos is everywhere, cheap and tasty. Forget drinking imported beer while you’re in Laos, Beerlao is the only name you’ll need to remember when you walk into a bar.

Lao coffee

Coffee is grown across southern Laos and when brewed up it’s fantastic. It’s thick and dark and usually served with sweetened condensed milk. Have one of these in the morning and you’ll be set for the day.

Going French

The French colonial influence in Laos has left the country with a taste for French food. Baguettes are popular and make a great snack, while in Vientiane there are some top-class French restaurants, where you can eat a sensational meal that will be Paris-quality at about a tenth of the cost.


Tap water is not safe to drink. In restaurants ask for water that has been filtered or boiled, or drink bottled water instead.