In a town that does not have a restaurant scene to rave about, le café de Paris is worth a visit, for several reasons.
The French owner is a kind, attentive host who makes each of his guests feel special. His Lao wife does the cooking, and does it well. The menu features only a few dishes; there is Lao food, but most come for simple French food such as boeuf bourguignon (a classical beef stew) or a fillet of beef that is a staple in French bistros: a thinly sliced (yet not overcooked) steak served with tasty fries, a wine sauce and a green salad with garlic dressing. There was also an excellent pâté, and for dessert: crêpes.
The simplicity of the menu helps in executing everything well and in keeping waiting times down. The interior is nothing fancy, in line with the rest of the town. Be advised that this restaurant is apparently quite popular and doesn't have more seating capacity than the kitchen can handle, so arrive early in the evening or else be prepared to wait or even come back another time.
How to get there: go to the Elephant Crossing hotel (it's one of the hotels on the river), turn your back to it and walk into the street that is now ahead of you, in other words away from the river. You'll see le café de Paris on your left hand side.