Vientiane: Flavours & Spices

If your tummy starts to rumble at the thought of spicy rice with tender, falling-off-the-bone meat, rich coconut curries, or a cool mango lassi on a hot Vientiane day, you're in luck. There's a new (Indian) kid on the block - Flavours and Spices.

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Flavours & Spices just opened in mid November and serves breakfast, lunch and dinner. It occupies the ground floor of this 2-storey building with generous indoor and outdoor seating. When the weather is a bit cooler, it will be great to sit outdoors in this sunny spot.

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I love the beginnings of the green walls on either side of the outdoor area - they'll look terrific when the plants start to bud and flower.

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Inside, everything is brand new from the tables and chairs to the freshly painted walls. The decor is simple - polished, caramel wooden tables and chairs offset the grey back wall with the striking Flavours & Spices logo at its centre.

Natural light pours in from the front windows while the ceiling lights cast a clean yellow sheen on the walls. Simple brown prints adorn the walls, ingredients "Cardamom", "Cinnamon" etc, and their definitions. An enormous congratulatory bunch of flowers leans against a wall.

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The menu follows the grey and yellow branding and is full of enticing, authentic Indian cuisine. There's a generous vegetarian section and even the south Indian staple, thosai, a crisp, wrapped pancake enclosing a curry filling.

Flavours & Spices makes for a great neighbourhood lunch spot; I headed there with a friend and we ordered up big. We had the signature claypot fish curry, mutton biryani, chicken tikka masala, parathas (Indian bread), brinjal (eggplant), and the long beans (which ironically were chopped into tiny pieces). 

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The food was delicious - the meat tender, the curries full of flavour and spice without being overpowered by chilli, the vegetables fresh and not over-saturated with oil, and the parathas light and fluffy. We both ate long after we were full - the sign of a good meal!

It's exciting to welcome another restaurant to Vientiane and Flavours & Spices is one I'll be seeing again soon.

Flavours & Spices is on Sokpaluang Road near the turn off to VIS and Panyathip kindergarten. It's open from 10am-10pm