Fire x Soi 38
In 2021, Pulteney Street staple Soi 38 moved over to Pirie Street. But the team also held onto the original premises and reopened as Fire x Soi 38: a bricks and mortar iteration of their popular festival stall.
While Soi 38's menu continues to delve deeper into the regional foods of southern and western Thailand and the country’s ethnic minorities, Fire is taking the opposite path – here, it’s all about unabashed fusion. Think dumplings in green curry sauce, sticky wings with sriracha mayonnaise, and popcorn cauliflower. Also, brisket infused with lemongrass and fish sauce, pork ribs that have been twice-cooked in master stock, and Thai fishcake burgers.
Another highlight is the spicy Chiang Mai-inspired chicken hotdog with pickled slaw – a riff on the massive, curled, spiced sausages (sai ua) popular in Northern Thailand. Made with lemongrass, kaffir lime, ginger and curry paste, they’re traditionally served as a whole curl of the sausages by the kilo; never by the piece. Fire has adapted this by working with (Nomad Farms) to create sausages that are 150 to 200 grams – the perfect fit for a hot dog bun.
Owner and chef Terry Intarakhamhaeng has enlisted Baily Spada as the head chef for Fire. The two met at The Sailing Club in Port Elliot a few years back, which led to Spada working at the original Soi 38 for a while, before becoming involved with Fire.
Although the focus is on bringing their festival menu to the permanent Pulteney Street site, classic Soi 38 dishes haven’t disappeared completely (you might see a green or massaman curry grace the menu). The restaurant’s interior isn’t dramatically different from what it was when it was Soi 38, either. Designer and co-owner Dave Lawson (from Design People) has retained the interior's pastel colour palette. New to the space are stickers playing on the fire theme, and matchbox-style lightboxes inspired by street signage in Thailand.