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“Cous Cous Royal”
Review of Arisai - CLOSED

Arisai
Cuisines: Mediterranean
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Restaurant details
Good for: Business meetings, Special Occasion Dining, Romantic
Dining options: Lunch, Dinner, Reservations
Reviewed 22 April 2012

We love to dine with cous cous royal here. It is true that this dish is not to die for. But what do you expect in Luang Prabang. We are very lucky to have good morroccan food and servicing by beautiful waitress.

Thank Narisaraporn P
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviews (39)
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3 - 7 of 39 reviews

Reviewed 16 April 2012

We were looking for a nice place to eat and ran across this place. We ate upstairs which was very nice. The air conditioning was a plus since it is quite hot during this part of the year.
We were greeted by a very friendly waiter who was very prompt and kept refilling our water.

The food was very delicious. We ordered the brochette duo, lamb penne, and chicken.
Each dish was very well prepared and the chicken dish had a very delicious sauce.

The price was a bit more than other places, but really this place is a fine dinning experience for Laos so you should expect the higher price.

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Thank Tyghe V
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 23 February 2012

i want to like this place. the food is decent and the only real mediterranean in town, but the owner I find to be a pompous chauvinist. the service is ok but nothing special (though this is lao, i am aware) and when you're upstairs if it's quiet you can hear the rats squeeking or even see them running across the floor. I've lived in Laos for over a year and never seen a rat in a restaurant except for here. do yourself a favor and move elsewhere.. unless you really want couscous

Thank stock210
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 13 December 2011

Looking for the tasty Mediterranean food enjoyed by other reviewers we visited Arisai. Last orders are at nine, however they didn't turn away a late visitor who arrived around then.

This small restaurant is in an attractive old shophouse with the kitchen on one side, two tables squeezed on the other and three or four on the pavement in front. As another couple was sitting inside we sat down at one of the outdoor tables, but were asked to move inside by one of the waiters apparently to save the staff a short walk.

My partner was interested in trying the watercress gazpacho, and we asked (in Lao) whether it would be served cold or hot. The waiter told us we could have it how we liked it, and when we repeated the question went off to the kitchen, returning with a detailed procedure for making it, which seemed to imply it would be served cold.

As it was a cold evening we ordered pork pate (38,000 kip), provencal stew of wild boar (65,000 kip) and ailoi with steamed cod and vegetables (about 70,000 kip). Whilst the couple next to us were working their way through a shared dessert of ice-cream and some sponge which looked delicious, the waiter brought an amuse-bouche of an aubergine dip with toasted strips of baguette which was bland, being mostly aubergine puree, but quite tasty.

We shared the pork pate, a large, coarse but well-flavoured piece which came with a small side-salad without bread or toast. I assumed this was simply their presentation but luckily some of the toasted baguette was left from the amuse-bouche and after half-an-hour the waitress brought some baguette - no butter - so we were able to finish the last of the pate with some bread.

The small salad of various lettuce leaves was accompanied by three very salty black olives - rather like those crespa ones - accompanying the block of pate - unfortunately the garlic vinegraitte smelt of rotting vegetables, rather like a truffle, but less pleasant. Neither of us could identify the mystery ingredient, and as we were being serenaded by a noisy rat under the stairs we were distracted.

When my boar stew arrived, I was surprised at the small portion - either three or four 3/4-inch cubes of meat, six carrot batons, three or four chunks of potato, two or three half mushrooms and one olive in a thickish gravy. The meat was rather dry, tough and gristly in parts - evidence of its genuine source combined with poor technique and possibly too frequent reheating. The tomato-based sauce tasted over-reduced. The boiled vegetables thankfully were tasty.

My partner's steamed cod came with a good selection of boiled vegetables and a garlic mayonnaise, however the cod had been substituted with a piece of pla ning, a locally-farmed freshwater fish which in typical local style had been deep-fried to a very crispy dark reddish-brown all over, and was quite tough and dry.

As this was not what we had ordered, I objected. Three waiting staff crowded round all talking at the same time to assure us that since the salt cod had ran out they had served the same fish twice previously without complaint - more or less to say that the problem was ours not theirs. As this is a classic French dish I was unwilling to compromise and after a heated argument they took the 'cod' away and took it off the bill.

Shortly after that we left having had enough.

The bill came to 105,000 kip or around $13.50 for two dishes which I consider excessive for the quantity and quality of food we ate. The service was poor overall with little attention paid to what was going on, and a lack of understanding of their menu.

The staff appear to be out of their depth with the restaurant's ambitions and I would not recommend it except perhaps for simple dishes which don't require preparation or culinary technique.

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Thank jrussell88
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 29 October 2011

love the concept of the restaurant... food was average in comparison to the price which would be one of the most expensive in town, unless comparing to hotel restaurants.

had the antipasto, lamb with cous cous and chicken dish, the rest of the menu didnt appeal to us. It wasnt bad but wasnt great either... serving wasnt generous so lucky there they gave bread to go with the meals!

Nice ambience, simple menu and good wine selection - would appeal to more if price isnt as high and perhaps some more selections

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Thank QTSBee
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC

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