The Quartier Asiatique, which also goes by the names Petite Asie or Triangle de Choisy, given the rough shape of its outline between the Avenue de Choisy, Avenue d’Ivry, and Boulevard Masséna in the 13th arrondissement, is known for its high-rise apartment blocks, spectacular annual parade, and plethora of top-quality restaurants. Here you’ll find the best Vietnamese, Laotian, Cambodian, and Chinese food in Paris, as well as some incredible Malaysian, Indonesian, Korean, Japanese, and Indian cuisine.
Basilic & Spice, a trendy but elegant restaurant at the northernmost tip of the Quartier Asiatique, specializes in authentic Khmer and Thai cuisine. There is a mixture of booth and table seating, and it is as equally popular for business lunches as it is for family dinners. The seafood dishes on the menu are particularly delectable.
Restaurant Lao Viet, which, strictly speaking, is located just outside the boundaries of the Asian Quarter and further towards the Seine, is the place to go to sample the best of Laotian cuisine. That being said, their Vietnamese and Thai dishes are equally worthy of attention. It’s a fairly traditional place, with white tablecloths and napkins in glasses, where the welcome is immediate and warm.
Another strong contender for the tastiest Laotian food in the capital, Lao Douang Paseuth is a more casual affair, on the opposite side of the neighborhood at the Porte d’Italie. The house specialties have got to be their noodles, prepared in vegetable and meat broths as well as sautéed with the flavors of Southeast Asia. With 48 hours’ notice, they will also prepare a banquet for you in the spacious side room.
Raviolis Chinois, on the western edge of the Asian Quarter, is a friendly, family-oriented restaurant that offers exceptional cuisine from the province of Liaoning in the northeast of China. As suggested by its name, the homemade raviolis, or dumplings, are the standout dish that you would be mad not to try. On the doorstep of the Maison Blanche metro station, the menu is packed with authentic local dishes that you can try without having to take an irksome 13-hour flight from Charles de Gaulle.
Chez Yong, which is equidistant from the heart of the Quartier Asiatique and the beautiful Parc Montsouris, is hands down the best place in town for Sichuan cuisine. Faithful to the particular flavors of the region, this traditional restaurant is famed for its barbecued beef and Chengdu chicken. If you’re in a rush or on a budget, they also offer a 10% discount on takeaway orders.
Back in the center of the neighborhood, Le Sarawan is the home of lovers of Malaysian and Indonesian cuisine in Paris. If you love spicy foods, this is the place for you but even if you don’t, don’t worry, the staff are ready and waiting to advise the uninitiated. The house specialty is a caramelized pork dish that is a veritable delicacy of this part of the world. The menu also offers a mixture of Vietnamese and Chinese dishes.
Mondol Kiri, just to the north of the neighborhood and overlooking the Parc de Choisy, is the best restaurant in the 13th arrondissement for Cambodian food. Dishes that have to be sampled include their grilled, lemon-marinated fish of the day, the green papaya salad, and the sharing platter for two featuring satay beef, lemon chicken, and fine noodles.
Palais de Krishnaa, which is close to the Place d’Italie and the Italie Deux shopping center, is a gastronomic Indian restaurant that specializes in cuisine from across the subcontinent. The place is brightly decorated, and the family-run business is renowned for its genial atmosphere. It also offers a takeaway and delivery service.
Most of the Korean and Japanese restaurants in Paris are found in the 1st arrondissement around the Rue Sainte-Anne, but if you’re in the 13th arrondissement and in the mood for this kind of cuisine then make a beeline for Namoo. Opened in 2002, it’s become famous for its barbecue dishes, but there’s plenty more on the menu to sample besides these.
Just a stone’s throw from Tolbiac metro station, you’ll find the aptly named Paradis Thai. The building’s façade is that of a gigantic temple, and inside there is dining space over two floors. The décor is muted and modern, whilst retaining some traditional Thai charm, and the flavors on the plate are out of this world. This place isn’t to be missed.