In Old Lille, Lucky Panda has become a restaurant.

A tree, lanterns, some greenery, we are even greeted by a maneki-neko (Japanese lucky cat), made up in the form of a panda. We are at the new headquarters of Lucky Panda. The Vietnamese caterer on rue Royale moved to Terrasse Sainte-Catherine in April to become a real restaurant.

When we think about moving, we think about boxes and often about leaving without a return… But it also happens that the move is literally a stone’s throw away, without long goodbyes. This is exactly what happened to Vietnamese catering company Lucky Panda, which moved from 35 rue Royale to 3 terrasse Sainte-Catherine on April 12. Or thirty meters away.

This is not the only novelty: a brand that was only catering has become a restaurant. “We wanted a setting where people could eat there, says Maihan N’guyen, co-founder. Our clients wanted to take it easy.

Ho Chi Minh City – Calais – Lille

This adventure is based on two pillars. First, finally, the first mentioned above is Maihan Nguyen. She grew up in Calais, far away from her native Ho Chi Minh City, but Vietnam never left her. This was followed by studies at EDHEC, an eight-year stay in Shanghai and a return to the North.

John is a cook. Mayhan and Benjamin run Lucky Panda.

It was at this point that Maikhan had the idea to go into the restaurant business away from trade.”bullshit‘ as she explains. Especially since the kitchen is a family affair, as his mother owns Au Little Saigon in Calais. Ambitious, she decided to open her own Vietnamese catering company with her former neighbor. This is Benjamin Robin, he has been a web developer for twenty years and already had an appetite for Asian food.

In April 2018, they found their premises on rue Royale, then in April 2022 they moved and opened their restaurant a stone’s throw from it. “We jumped at the chanceBenjamin continues. We signed on December 24, and then work began in January. It was tiring, but we got there.

Vietnamese formula

Lucky Panda first of all pays attention to the quality of its dishes. These are fresh products (except shrimp) served according to Asian recipes. Particular attention in tandem is paid to the addition of herbs and spices. The restaurant serves soup, traditional dishes and roasts every week. For example, soup bun riêu cua (a mixture of crab, shrimp, tomato, noodles, lemon and soy), General Tao’s chicken and Thai pad.

Not to mention the waiter’s fixed menu with salads, plates for two, etc. We will send you a web page for more details. The team is also gearing up to launch their Vietnamese brunches on Sunday afternoons. Top start May 22.

Many projects

When we say “full projects”, we insist. The brains of Benjamin and Mayhan are teeming with ideas. “We want to colonize the top two floorsthe manager says. It will be a completely new experience.The co-founder adds:Something between an opium den and a restaurant.

As for the second floor, we hear about very large tables designed for business or family meals. There will definitely be electrified tables where you can eat Chinese fondue. And there can be no question of doing all this in three years. “The tenants above will leave. We would like to put this into effect in January 2023.“, concludes Maikhan

Lucky Panda is now located at 3 Terrasse Sainte-Catherine and is open Tuesday to Saturday, noon and evening. You can follow the adventures of Lucky Panda on Facebook and Instagram.

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