The Promise Restaurant Doesn’t Disappoint.

When it comes to ‘all you can eat’ buffets, Vientiane has always been in desperate need for a quality one. I tend to shy away from buffets, for two reasons. Reason number one: I am a picky eater and buffets tend to have a common theme- blandness. Reason number two: I have been REPEATEDLY told by numerous people, including my own mother, that the amount of food I consume is not worth the value of the actual buffet, which makes sense (please refer to back to ‘reason number 1’). So when The Promise opened its doors as an ‘all you can eat’ buffet, my enthusiasm was lackluster. However, after seeing so many Facebook check-ins on my Newsfeed (if it’s Facebook approved, it’s a must try right??) I decided to give it a shot.

Located above the Champa nightclub, The Promise Restaurant offers two floors of seating, with the buffet located on the third level and casual dining located on the second. The first thing I noticed when entering was that the restaurant was very clean, with no stale stench of old food smells or flies flying about. My party and I were promptly seated upon our arrival to the third floor, and we didn’t waste any time.

The self-serving hot food station had very tasty Lao food, well seasoned and well balanced, but nothing that you couldn’t find at any other buffet in town. However, I was immediately attracted to the cooking stations. The first station had raw clams sitting in a cooker with a chef prepared to steam them to my liking. The second station offered yellow noodles and Pho, with choices of wontons or roasted pork and had the option of adding TomYum sauce that gave it a delicious kick. The next station was the ‘tam’ station, where I had the chef tailor the papaya salad to my taste buds. The fourth station, my favorite station, served up ‘yum’ salad with seafood and just the right amount of accompanying ingredients. There was also fresh salmon sashimi offered along with a variety of other sushi items, that  customers are able to help themselves to (I applaud this establishment for giving their customers the ability to eat fresh sushi sashimi at their own free will, without a fresh sushi sashimi guard distributing plates with 2 sashimi slices at a time .)

The Promise Buffet Vientiane Cooking Station

After devouring our plates a second time (for some people in my party a third and a fourth *ahem*) we made our way over to the dessert table. The dessert table had the traditional do-it-yourself ‘nam van’ with all the fixings, along with fresh fruit and some other well known Lao desserts that weren’t too sweet. The pastries were my personal favorite, not too sweet and not too buttery. They were portioned well too, so you could have a chance to try a little bit of everything (or for some people in my party, a lot of bit of everything *ahem*).

So how much will it cost you for this feast?? Not too much, actually. For adults it’s 69,000kip, for children it‘s 39,000kip. The Promise Restaurant is open Monday-Saturday for lunch at 11AM-2PM and for dinner 6PM-10PM. Drinks are included within the price, including your typical soda flavor along with red wine and Beer Lao. For the delicious choices that were available to us, along with drinks and sushi, we promise that ‘The Promise’ won’t disappoint. (pun intended)

Article Contributed by Malie Silavong

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