Hold your nose

Laos Café

On Chinese New Year day, my Dad and I tried the new pop-up Laos Café by Saiphin, who runs Rosa’s Thai Café in Soho, London. It runs until the end of February, and is located 3 minutes’ walk away from London Victoria station on:

25 Gillingham Street London SW1V 1HN
Mon-Sat 12:00-22:30
Sun        14:00-22:00

I myself would not recommend it, but I think I am the odd one out, as everybody else (see photo) seemed to be enjoying themselves, and this other review says that the food is authentic. Maybe I’m just not suited to Laotian cuisine.

Service: The waiters were polite and friendly, even if they varied between being not so attentive to being overly attentive.

First impression: It smelt like the toilets, but I think I was smelling their fish sauce…we moved to a window seat to escape the smell, but to no avail. Ironically the one place in the café that did not stink of the smell were the toilets in the basement. Unappetising.

Drinks: The lemon iced tea (£3) and homemade milk iced tea (£3) were not too sweet, which is how my Dad and I like it, but unfortunately  the same was true for the prices.

Food: Everything except for the sausages and vermicelli was too spicy, too sour, and too salty. We shared spicy minced duck (£8) at the recommendation of our waiter, fermented pork & toasted rice (£8), Isaan sausages (£5), and rice vermicelli (£3). The flavour of the duck and of the pork was very similar, and unexciting. I mean, can you even tell the duck from the pork in the photo below if the lettuce was arranged differently? I rest my case.

Laos Café dishes

Clockwise from top: Isaan sausages, spicy minced duck, fermented pork and toasted rice

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