We ate at Tamarind twice, but, the competition in Luang Prabang for traditional Laos food is not that good, well apart from a small street near the night market, where quite a few stalls set up at night to tempt you with grilled fish, chicken and Laap salad. More on that later.
It's located down a quiet street opposite a Wat, which in the late afternoon you can hear the monks chanting their prayers. The restaurant is only open from 11am till 6pm everyday, but the week we were there they were closing much earlier as the owners were away. Which was disappointing as I wanted to attend the cooking class there, as I had heard it was very good and very hands on.
What they serve is not really full meals but more of a Laos Brunch. More than a snack but less than a meal. The menu tells the story of all the players in the restaurant, and gives a run down on traditional Laos food. Plus highlights some local charities and exhibitions by local artists. It's quite a read.
As it wasn't going to be our main meal of the day, but more of a light lunch. We opted for two sharing plates, so we could get a wider taste of Laos food. Both came with sticky rice, which seems to be eaten by all Laotians anytime of the day, and is my favourite form of rice.
The first one was more of a dipping plate. It consisted of a tomato and chilli dip, coriander dip, an aubergine dip (which really reminded me of baba ganoush), a fish and chilli dip and a sheet of dried river weed, which was coated in sesame seeds. It ate better than it sounds.
The second plate had more substantial foods like local Luang Prabang sausage and dried buffalo meat, some rolled cabbage with a sauce inside, some lightly cooked greens and some shredded chicken and beansprouts.
Both plates were presented very well and were excellent eating. The dips were spicy enough and went well with the sausage. The buffalo meat was divine. I could of eaten that all day. The greens I could of left but were pretty good. The drinks were heaven also. Lemongrass and ginger juice. Very refreshing.
All in all we spent two pleasant afternoons in Tamarind.
If you get the chance and do the cooking course, send me an email and let me know how it is. Gutted that i missed it. Next time.