Best Asian Restaurants: Laotian

Northwest by Far East: the Insider’s Guide to Asian Food in Seattle

January 25, 2011 Published in the February 2011 issue of Seattle Met


Soba noodles with sesame oil, seaweed, and Thai chilies.

Food Styling: Tyler Rebman
Prop Stylist: Gabriel Trivelas

Image: Paul Kooiman


The proprietors of this spotless Roosevelt refuge are Lao, but much of the menu is Thai; it can be hard to tell where one ends and the other begins, since Issan (northeast Thailand) was originally part of Laos. Laotian dishes tend to be earthier and less sweet, notably a pungent, shrimp-paste-infused version of shredded green papaya salad.

Who’s here Globally curious Caucasians, who come to try novel Lao dishes and some of the best Thai cooking in town.
Don’t miss On the Lao menu, gai yang, curried game hen, and toam kaim moo, stewed pork in sweet soy sauce with veggies and boiled eggs, sister to classic Vietnamese thit heo kho.
Pssst Savatdee, with the V pronounced like a B, means “hello.” Let on that you know a bit about Laos and that you think it should get Issan back, and you might get extra prawns in your stir-fry.


The decor is tropical shabby chic, and the service diffident. But the food is welcoming—warm, oily, and pungent, with Thai standards and Lao specialties sharing the menu. Sticky rice, the chewy, comforting regional staple, served in wicker baskets, is the glue—almost literally—that holds it all together.

Who’s here Native speakers—this is Southeast Seattle.
Don’t miss Crackling sweet-and-sour deep-fried fish and a heaping portion of piquant, tangy, slightly briny squid salad.
Pssst It’s cash only, closes at 8pm…yet still they keep coming.

NEXT: Best Malaysian

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