Little House is a charming cafe and handicrafts shop serving debatably the finest coffee in Vientiane, as well as selling handmade silk and cotton items. The coffee shop also doubles as a coffee wholesaler which trades with many other restaurants and cafes in and around the city. This is where cafes come to buy coffee – high praise indeed!
Little House is owned and operated by H.P.E. (Handicraft Promotion Enterprise), a group started by Yukiko Tani who has been collaborating with ethnic Lenten tribespeople to produce embroidered handicrafts since 2002. Located on Manthatourat Road, a quiet street leading away from the river, Little House is unlike any other establishment in town.
Walking up the garden path and under the thatched roof, Little House feels more like a friend’s country cottage than a coffee shop, and this homey, rustic charm continues inside with large wicker sofas and kitchen furniture covered in delightfully embroidered bags, placemats and pillow covers. Everything displayed is for sale with profits going straight to the indigenous tribes who painstakingly stitch each piece by hand. Even though H.P.E. is not as famous as other ethical traders in Vientiane, the work here is unique and far easier on the wallet than other ventures around town.
There are two coffees to choose from: medium or dark roast. The dark roast iced coffee is among the best I have ever tried. Rich and bitter; it really put a spring in my step and was served on an H.P.E. embroidered placemat with miniature pots of syrup and milk. All of their coffee is sourced exclusively from the Bolaven Plateau, the coffee-growing region of Laos in Champasak Province and makes an ideal (and ethical) gift for any fans of the world’s favourite morning pick-me-up. There is also a limited range of cakes and pastries to snack on.
Set back a little from the road and fronted by a dainty white-picket fence; the whole experience is peaceful and serene. Instead of air-conditioning, Little House keeps the windows and doors propped open to catch the gentle breeze that blows through their garden and into the house. It’s the perfect place in which to escape the world for a few hours or to sit back with a good book without the drone of a television. There are many coffee shops in Vientiane but none quite like Little House.
Little House Cafe in Vientiane
- Opening Hours: 08:30-18:30 (closed Monday)
- Address: Manthatourat Road, Vientiane
- Tel: 856-20-5540-6036