Expect the unexpected when visiting Vientiane’s new L’atmosphere French restaurant; this is a very interesting place indeed. At first glance L’Atmosphere looks incredibly makeshift, like it was plonked together over a weekend and furnished with chairs and tables that fell off the back of a truck. Then, upon second glance, it still looks that way! So, naturally I was a bit apprehensive about the food!
I sat down in a red plastic chair at an old school desk and looked at the menu which was written on a whiteboard. I felt almost as if I was sitting an exam. But soon the waiter and owner, Sebastian, approached to take my order. He was incredibly friendly and went over the menu for me, translating all the french into English, and making some good suggestions. I tried the croque monsieur with frites and my friend had the terrine baguette with salad.
First Sebastian brought over a DIY lemon soda (you mix it yourself which is the French way, apparently) which was very refreshing. Then came the croque Monsieur. It was served on pain amercain, grilled to perfection and with really flavoursome ham. I was impressed! The Terrine baguette was filled with home-made duck pate made by a french expat with his own poultry farm here in vientiane. The salad was fresh with a vinegar based dressing that had a good kick to it, and the french fries were just the right kind of crispy. Serving size was also exactly right. I will most certainly be back for more!
All in all a great lunch spot (if the building doesnt collapse on your head). You can find L’atmosphere opposite the Fench medical centre near Khuvieng Rd. See google map reference here. Also open for drinks at night.