After the dissapointing experience of Green Elephant, we dicided to try something local and highly recommended in our LP guidebook.
It is a Shan cuisine restaurant where all cooked food is presented to the customers. You just ask what is this and that , place your order by pointing what you like and then enjoy your meal (at least you know what you have chosen). The restaurant caters both locals and foreigners ( I was surprised to see even groups there, meaning it IS good). Recommended!
A trip to Lashio Lay Shan restaurant at any time of day seems like a trip to Backpacker Central - everybody seems to end up there sooner or later, and some people never eat anywhere else. Whilst this doesn't do justice to the many other good restaurants in the city, it's understandable as the food here is very good.
The surroundings are fairly basic, and you go to the counter where there are numerous curries and other Shan dishes laid out in large pots. Just point to which one you fancy and it will be served at your table along with rice and all the accompaniments.
The Lonely Planet guide says it is open until 2200 - it's not really, unless you're just finishing up your meal slowly. By 2130 it's effectively closed, and it's best to get there before about 2030 as the food starts to run out and choices become limited.
A filling meal and a beer will cost you about 3 USD.
Definitely worth at least one visit, but do try some of the others as well.
Favorite Dish: One of the Shan meat curries. I'm not sure of the proper name (there's no menu) but it was lovely.
This restaurant is a legend in Mandalay, and rightly so, the food is superb.
Most tourists end up here for at least 1 meal.
Favorite Dish: It's all so good